The Democratic Party presidential nomination process rolls on (who’d have thunk it that we still wouldn’t have a nominee this late in the game?) with the next primary June 3rd in Montana, as well as Democratic and Republican primaries in South Dakota and the New Mexico Republican primary on the same day.
Both Sens. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama granted interviews with the Flathead Beacon (in Kalispell, MT) and made their pitch to win over voters. Part of their pitches included the topic of renewable energy:
Q: A new Bush administration report says most of the oil and nearly half of the natural gas beneath public lands in the U.S. are off limits to drilling. To get at those resources would require Congress to roll back environmental safeguards and lift drilling prohibitions on large areas of the Rocky Mountain West. As president, would you favor lifting some of these restrictions to increase domestic energy production?
Obama: I do not believe that we can drill our way out of the energy problem. I think that the way we solve our energy problem is by investing in a new generation of technologies: solar, wind, biodiesel, making our cars far more fuel-efficient. That’s the answer to our long-term energy needs and the more we put that off by trying to drill our way out of the problem, the bigger the price we’re going to pay down the road. Now is the time for us to start and that’s why I’ve said I’m going to invest $150 billion dollars, over ten years, $15 billion dollars a year, on an “Apollo Project” for energy independence and we are going to not only invest in science and research but we’re also going to invest in major projects that are going to produce millions of “green” jobs, all across the country, including Montana. That’s, I think, the kind of leadership that we need out of the White House right now.
Clinton: Not at this time, no. I’m familiar with the discussion about drilling on the Rocky Mountain Front and on other federal lands. I do not favor that at this time. I think we ought to be much more focused on energy efficiency and conservation and looking for sources of renewable energy like investing in clean-coal technology. I agree with Senators Baucus and Tester that keeping the Rocky Mountain Front untouched by drilling is essential to the enjoyment and economic security of local families and communities along the Front and all of Montana.