Last fall, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) sought to kill the EPA’s Cross-State Air Pollution rule, one that requires coal-fired power plants to curb smog and particulate-forming pollution in 27 states. Known as a “good neighbor” protection, the rule ensures that air pollution created in an upwind state doesn’t add to unhealthy pollution levels in downwind states — like New Hampshire.
Thus, Republican Sen. Kelly Ayotte (NH), along with five fellow GOP senators, joined with Senate Democrats to defeat Paul’s effort to overturn the rule.
At the NBC/Facebook GOP presidential debate in New Hampshire today, Mitt Romney was asked whether he sides with his endorser Ayotte or believes that the rule is another example of “job-killing regulation.” Following his non-committal playbook, Romney suggested, “I’m not familiar with the specific regulation as it applies to New Hampshire.” Watch it:
Romney was willing to make vague statements in an attempt to win over New Hampshire voters who support the rule, adding, “We have to find ways to keep pollution from one state overwhelming the ability of another state to have clean air.”