That’s the word from Allison Sherry of the Denver paper this afternoon. Circling back with three GOP members of Congress, Reps. Scott Tipton, Mike Coffman, and Cory Gardner, who had expressed support for extension of the wind power tax credit considered key to the preservation of hundreds of related jobs in Colorado, Sherry finds that the three of them do still support the extension–even in the wake of presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s avowed opposition. Mindful of the potential for an embarrassing split ahead of Romney’s visit to the state, Rep. Gardner was careful to note that even though he disagrees with Romney on this issue, he still thinks “the wind energy industry will be better off with Mitt Romney in the White House.”
Unfortunately, as Politico reports today:
Mitt Romney’s announcement this week that he opposes any extension of the wind production tax credit derailed a bipartisan agreement in the Senate to renew the industry’s crucial tax break, sources said Wednesday. [Pols emphasis]
The wind PTC, which expires at the end of this year, was originally going to be included in the bipartisan deal that the Senate Finance Committee announced early Wednesday, senior Senate sources familiar with the negotiations told POLITICO…
The fight between the presidential campaigns over the wind credit quickly heated up following the Romney campaign’s announcement, with fiscal conservatives backing Romney’s stance while Democrats and some Republicans – including Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad – expressed dismay.
This seems to us to be a fully expectable development: with the party’s de facto nominee publicly out in opposition, why would Republicans in either chamber lift a finger to pass this–bipartisan support or no bipartisan support? It’s worth noting that one of the Senate Republicans involved in negotiations, Orrin Hatch, denies this report that Romney’s opposition has had an effect.
Our question is, how could it not?
And how can Gardner say the wind power will be “better off” under Romney, when the industry itself says if Romney gets his way, thousands of wind power employees will lose their jobs?
If you can’t reconcile this contradiction, don’t feel too bad: voters won’t be able to either.