A video clip that surfaced on YouTube on Tuesday shows Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney discussing energy policy on CNBC’s “Kudlow & Company” four years ago, and agreeing that U.S. energy policy should reflect, in part, an acknowledgement that the earth’s climate is changing.
“With regards to global warming, that’s something which you’re right, the scientists haven’t entirely resolved,” Romney told host Larry Kudlow. “But no question about one thing — it’s getting warmer, and [there are] a lot of good reasons for us to use less energy, to use it more efficiently and to develop sources here in this country that could allow us to be more independent of foreign sources.”
In the Feb. 7, 2007 interview, broadcast just five weeks after Romney left the office of Massachusetts governor, included questions about gasoline taxes, U.S. dependence on foreign sources of oil, and carbon caps.
“The things we do to create energy independence,” Romney said at one point, “also allow us to put less carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. … For all good reasons — improving our economy, making us more independent on a foreign policy basis and potentially reducing the warming of the planet — it’s a good idea to become more energy independent.”
The former governor dismissed the idea that new energy taxes should be enforced as a way to change Americans’ consumption habits, but said he would listen to experts who disagree.
“I’m not a man that favors taxes,” he said. “And so, I’m not going to make a statement of that nature. But I can tell you that, you know, I don’t close off inquiry and discussion on a lot of topics, and I’m willing to talk to people about their perspectives.”
Ultimately, though, Romney agreed that a $1 per gallon gasoline tax, like the one favored by Harvard economist Greg Mankiw, “would terrify everybody in the whole country. A gas tax of that nature, I think that’s not something that’s going to be politically acceptable to the American people.”
David is The Daily Caller’s executive editor. Follow him on Twitter