Maryann Tobin

Mitt Romney has been vague on details for what he might do if elected president. That is not the case with the environment: Romney would destroy it.

“What Governor Romney is proposing is that state governments, which already control the development of energy resources on their own and private lands within their borders, would also control the development of energy resources on federal lands within their borders,” said Oren Cass, the campaign’s domestic policy director, in a conference call with reporters Wednesday, according to the New York Times.

America's national parks would no longer be protected from oil drilling, fracking and coal mining.

Romney claims the permanent destruction of America's natural environment is an acceptable trade-off for jobs and alleged energy independence.

Additionally, Romney would eliminate most, if not all, clean environmental regulations, leaving the public exposed to chemical pollution containing known carcinogens. His plan to expand coal-mining operations would not only permanently damage the land; it would also increase pollution from one of the dirtiest sources of energy in America.

Perhaps the most tragic offense in Romney's plan to pander to the Koch brothers, his biggest energy business campaign donors, is oil drilling in America's pristine national parks.

"Congress has received hundreds of thousands of emails, faxes and phone calls from citizens opposed to drilling in the Arctic Refuge, an outpouring that has helped make the difference. And polls have consistently shown that a majority of Americans oppose drilling, even in the face of high gas prices and misleading claims from oil interests," according to the NRDC.

But Romney would ignore those pleas. He would also threaten America's shores with deregulated off shore oil drilling.

Imagine the potential for repeated BP Deepwater Horizon disasters from new off shore wells not required to be inspected by government safety officials.

The battle between jobs, energy and the environment has been a long one for pro-big oil Republicans. But it is also one that Americans have spoken loud and clear on: They do not want the country permanently destroyed on behalf of big oil.

What Romney fails to disclose in his quest to use job creation as an excuse to pollute and destroy is the undeniable fact that oil produced in America does not mean lower energy prices.

No matter where oil is produced, it is sold on the open market and speculators drive prices. So if America flooded the market with oil, while it may temporarily cause a glut, any price reductions would be temporary, as they have always been in the past.

Furthernore, any threat of disruption in political stability of the Middle East would still send gas prices skyward, no matter how many national treasures are sacrificed in the U.S.

Americans are susceptible to scare tactics when they are given the promise of jobs. But promises from politicians in an election year are not worth a dime. Just look at Congress. Two years ago, the Tea Party swept control of the House on the promise of more jobs. Where are they?

As for Romney's energy plan for jobs: What good is a job if the pollution is causes kills you?

If you like to write about U.S. politics and Campaign 2012, enter "The American Pundit" competition. Allvoices is awarding four $250 prizes each month between now and November. These monthly winners earn eligibility for the $5,000 grand prize, to be awarded after the November election.


Romney energy plan removes limits on carbon dioxide air pollution

Ohio Republican admits voter suppression targets African Americans

Romney-Ryan tax plan: A path to the next Great Recession

Romney muddles facts on his Medicare plan