Republican Congressman Tom Latham has issued a statement critical of a Romney subordinate. At issue is Mitt Romney’s long-standing opposition to extending the wind production tax credit, which is set to expire at the end of the year.
WASHINGTON, DC – Iowa Congressman Tom Latham issued the following statement on Monday in response to a report in the Des Moines Register newspaper that quotes a Romney spokesperson saying that they oppose renewal of the wind energy tax credit:
“I’m disappointed that the statement by Governor Romney’s spokesperson shows a lack of full understanding of how important the wind energy tax credit is for Iowa and our nation. It’s the wrong decision. Wind energy represents one of the most innovative and exciting sectors of Iowa’s economy. Nearly 7,000 hardworking Iowans are employed by over 250 businesses associated with the wind energy industry in our state, making Iowa the top state in wind energy employment. A continuation of the wind energy tax credit is in the best interest of our nation’s all-of-the-above energy policy for American energy independence and for our economy. I invite Governor Romney to step forward and re-evaluate the statement issued by his campaign spokesman.”
As Radio Iowa reported last week, Romney’s opposition to the wind production tax credit is nothing new.
…Meanwhile, in Sioux City, Obama’s campaign arranged a news conference that featured a Republican businessman who takes issue with Romney’s opposition to a tax break for the wind energy industry. Rob Hach runs a business in Alta that installs and maintains wind towers.
“Mitt Romney has not understood the impact of the production tax credit,” Hach told reporters in Sioux City. “He has routinely asked for the removal of the production tax credit and he just really hasn’t understood what Iowa is about.”
Romney’s campaign website talks of the “failure of windmills” to make a profit and suggests it’s a waste of “both time and money” to invest in wind and solar technology “projects that do not bring us dividends.”
Hach and his wife started their company in 2002 and earlier this month it had 31 employees.
“On Friday we lost two employees. We have no intention to replace them right now,” Hach said. “There’s just not the demand there and we need to be able to have that tax credit in order to create the certainty in order to continue to grow our company.”
Hach told reporters a politician’s stand on the wind production tax credit is key in his decision-making.
“This fall, when I have a chance to be in a voting booth by myself, I will pull the lever for Congressman King and I will pull the lever for President Obama,” Hach said. “Both them are supporters of me, my job and my childrens’ future.”
Steve King and the rest of Iowa’s congressional delegation support extending the tax break for the wind industry.
Below is the relevant section of Romney’s campaign website on energy policy:
Government has a role to play in innovation in the energy industry. History shows that the United States has moved forward in astonishing ways thanks to national investment in basic research and advanced technology. However, we should not be in the business of steering investment toward particular politically favored approaches. That is a recipe for both time and money wasted on projects that do not bring us dividends. The failure of windmills and solar plants to become economically viable or make a significant contribution to our energy supply is a prime example