Friday, October 8, 2010

Is Colorado’s senate race a referendum on Obama’s energy policies?

Tea party politics has caught fire in Colorado, where Democrat Sen. Michael Bennet is being pushed to the brink by GOP challenger and tea party favorite Ken Buck.

Bennet, who has never won elected office, believes the government must act aggressively to reduce greenhouse gases and drive the expansion of renewable energy through tax subsidies and the use of federal land.

Such positions, which largely mirror the Obama administration's policies, stand in stark contrast to Buck's small government, and some say anti-environmental, rhetoric. Among other things, Buck has openly challenged the science behind global climate change and believes the federal government should keep out of state energy policies.

But the outcome of the Bennet-Buck contest could have wide-ranging implications not only in Colorado -- which has one of the nation's strongest renewable energy standards -- but across the West, political observers say. Some say it could even serve as referendum on the Obama administration's energy and public lands policies.    More

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