As governor of Massachusetts in 2006, Mitt Romney opposed a Republican proposal to suspend the state gas tax during a gasoline price spike, saying “high gasoline prices are probably here to stay.” Romney’s “fit into his broader effort to promote ‘smart growth’ policies in Massachusetts,” Alec MacGillis of the New Republic reports. Romney told the Quincy Patriot Ledger that he opposed increased gasoline consumption:
“I don’t think that now is the time, and I’m not sure there will be the right time, for us to encourage the use of more gasoline. I’m very much in favor of people recognizing that these high gasoline prices are probably here to stay.” [Quincy Patriot Ledger, 5/06]
Now that Romney’s running for the Republican nomination and seeking the support of right-wing oil magnates like the Koch brothers, he’s changed his tune. On Sunday, Romney argued that the “gas hike trio” of Energy Secretary Steven Chu, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, and EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson should “hand in their resignations” — because they and President Obama have pursued policies in line with Romney’s former position:
There’s no question but when he ran for office he said he wanted to see gasoline prices to go up. He said that energy prices would skyrocket under his views. And he selected three people to help him implement that program: the Secretary of Energy, the Secretary of the Interior, and the EPA Administrator. This gas hike trio has been doing the job over the last three-and-a-half years and gas prices are up. The right course is, they ought to be fired, because the president has apparently suffered an election-year conversion. He’s now decided that gasoline prices should come down.
It appears Romney’s Etch-a-Sketch runs on oil.