*UPDATE: IowaGOP.org has suddenly become ‘temporarily unavailable’ just minutes after drawing criticism for including calls to repeal the Renewable Fuel Standard in their official Party Platform under the section, IowaGOP.org/About. The timing of the website coming down seems a little too convenient to be a coincidence.
Statement from Jeremy Funk, Comm. Director, Americans United for Change: “If the Iowa Republican Party is busy scrubbing their website of calls to repeal the RFS, they needn’t bother because we have a screen grab of their original Platform content. If the Iowa GOP are in fact busy scrubbing their website, that is tantamount to admitting they’re wrong and Joni Ernst’s ‘philosophical opposition’ to the RFS is wrong for Iowa’s economy and completely out-of-step with Iowa voters. The Iowa GOP and Joni Ernst have every right to reject the RFS as their Big Oil donors want them to — but don’t try to pull the wool over voters’ eyes about it.”
From: Jeremy Funk
Sent: Thursday, August 28, 2014 1:12 PM
Subject: Iowa Republican Party Platform Actually Calls for Repealing the RFS. OOPS…
Did You Know the Iowa Republican Party Is Just as Misguided as Joni Ernst on the Renewable Fuel Standard?
Iowa GOP’s Platform Actually Calls for Repealing the RFS. OOPS…
Washington DC – As it turns out, Joni Ernst is not the only one in Iowa on the wrong side of voters with her ‘philosophical opposition’ to the Renewable Fuel Standard. Like Ernst, the Iowa Republican Party’s ‘perfect world’ is one devoid of the RFS, a program that has helped Iowa farmers earn a decent living and made the state a global leader in renewable fuel production. Considering that 73,000 Iowa jobs are supported by renewable fuels today, voters might be surprised to learn that the Iowa Republican Party Platform explicitly calls for the repeal of the RFS, available for all to see on IowaGOP.org/About :
8.6 The use of biofuels, such as ethanol blended gasoline, biodiesel, and E-85 should be encouraged, but must not be mandated or subsidized.
8.7 We oppose the use of any regulatory body to dictate the type of energy that will be produced and used. Energy production should be based on free-market economics…
…8.9 We should end the federal petroleum mandate and allow for consumer fuel choice
How out-of-touch are Ernst and the Iowa GOP? A recent Des Moines Register poll found an overwhelmingly 77 percent of Iowa voters support extending the RFS.
Jeremy Funk, Communications Director for Americans United For Change, made the following statement: “Looks like Joni Ernst isn’t the only one in the Iowa Republican Party who is ‘philosophically opposed’ to the Renewable Fuel Standard – that’s now the formal position of her political party. What were they thinking including RFS repeal in their party platform? Obviously not much about Iowa jobs, and obviously too much about Big Oil money. From the Koch Brothers to the American Petroleum Institute to Exxon-Mobil, to the U.S. Chamber, to the Iowa Republican Party, it’s no coincidence that Joni Ernst is getting her strongest support from the strongest opponents of the RFS. In fact, the American Petroleum Institute, which joined Exxon in cohosting a fundraiser for Joni Ernst, has said that repealing the Renewable Fuel Standard is their ‘top priority.’ The oil industry can’t believe their luck in finding a Senate nominee from Iowa who is philosophically opposed to supporting an industry that supports more than 73,000 Iowa jobs. Iowa needs a strong leader for renewable fuels in Washington – not someone who surrounds themselves with Big Oil lobbyists and special interests that would lead Iowa’s economy into the ditch. This is just another example of how the Iowa Republican Party leadership and Joni Ernst are in lockstep with one another – but far outside of the mainstream.”
While the Iowa Republican Party is clearly a flawed surrogate to defend Ernst’s misguided position on the RFS, it is not stopping them from trying. Earlier this week, the Iowa GOP promoted a news clip of a former Democratic Senator from Virginia echoing the same anti-RFS sentiments that Joni Ernst has voiced time and again. That the Iowa GOP would choose to highlight this news clip suggests that they believe Joni Ernst is above criticism for her anti-RFS views because they are shared by a former Senator from Virginia, a state which produces a tiny fraction of the biofuels that Iowa does. News flash for Iowa GOP: Virginia is not Iowa. News flash for Joni Ernst: you’re running to represent Iowa, not Texas.
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§ 08.01.14 A Banner Week for Exxon Ernst