WASHINGTON, D.C. –The League of Conservation Voters (LCV) today announced a new $850,000 television ad campaign re-launching an ad featuring a former employee of a local wind turbine manufacturing plant who says he “got laid off because Mitt Romney and his friends in Congress want to eliminate tax credits for wind energy.” The ad begins airing tomorrow in the Denver media market and runs through Election Day.
“Mitt Romney’s anti-clean energy policies would create jobs, but they would be overseas and not here at home,” said Navin Nayak, LCV Senior Vice President of Campaigns. “If the extreme Big Oil-backed policies of Romney and his allies are already costing Colorado workers like Chris their job, imagine what he would do if he got to the White House.”
The ad features Chris Maese of Pueblo, Colo., who built wind turbines at Vestas’ Pueblo facility. Vestas is the world’s largest wind turbine manufacturer. In the ad, Maese talks about how Romney’s opposition to extending the Production Tax Credit (PTC) for wind energy helped cause his layoff in August.
Politico reported that senior Senate sources have said that Romney’s opposition to extending the PTC “derailed” a bipartisan Senate agreement to renew the tax credit. The New York Times similarly reported that “Senate Republicans removed” the PTC extension from the Senate Finance Committee’s tax extenders package “to show their loyalty” to Romney. Two weeks later, Vestas announced the layoffs at its Pueblo facility.
"Mitt Romney's opposition to the wind energy tax credit has cost 200 Coloradans their jobs and more will be at risk if he is elected President," said Pete Maysmith, Executive Director of Colorado Conservation Voters. "As Romney flip-flops in his support of wind energy in the final days of the election season, Coloradans need someone they can trust in the White House who believes in the future of renewable energy and clean energy workers like Chris Maese."
The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) has found that in 2011, the wind industry alone supported 4,000-5,000 jobs in the state– many of which would be endangered if the tax credit expires. AWEA has estimated that letting the tax credit expire will cost 37,000 jobs nationwide.
Romney’s position puts him at odds with Republicans, Democrats and local job creators in Colorado. Three of the state’s four Republican Congressmen have expressed support for extending the PTC. Although Romney would devastate the renewable energy sector, he would continue giving billions of dollars in taxpayer-subsidized handouts to oil companies, some of the most profitable companies on the face of the planet.
The League of Conservation Voters Victory Fund originally launched this ad with a $500,000 television ad campaign earlier this month ahead of the first Presidential debate in Colorado.
In April, the League of Conservation Voters Victory Fund and Priorities USA Action partnered to release a television ad titled “$200 Million Man” to highlight Romney’s pledge to protect Big Oil at the expense of middle class Americans. Between his two Presidential campaigns, Romney has received more than $5.2 million from oil and gas interests. The ad ran on television and online throughout Colorado.