- Energy policy is shaping up to be a key issue in the 2024 presidential race as President Joe Biden’s massive climate spending and regulatory agenda takes hold of the U.S. economy.
- Several 2024 GOP primary hopefuls told the Daily Caller News Foundation their administrations would repeal Biden’s signature climate law, defund the Environmental Protection Agency and withdraw from the United Nations Paris Climate Agreement.
- “Governor Burgum will cut red tape, prioritize innovation over regulation, improve permitting reform, expand energy production and support technology that allows America to produce energy that is cleaner, safer and cheaper than anywhere else in the world,” Lance Trover, spokesman for Burgum’s campaign, told the DCNF.
Several 2024 Republican presidential candidates would defund the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and repeal President Joe Biden’s signature climate law if elected, they told the Daily Caller News Foundation.
Gas prices are rising, power plants are closing and regulations are impacting internal combustion engine vehicles and appliances like water heaters. Along with slashing the EPA and repealing the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), many GOP hopefuls also pledged to withdraw from the United Nations Paris Climate Agreement if they secure the White House in 2024, several candidates told the DCNF.
“Any aspect of the IRA that is detrimental to economic growth adds unnecessary regulations, restricts energy production, exacerbates inflation, or does not align with our vision of a prosperous America would be reversed or repealed,” former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson told the DCNF. “As president, I will evaluate the IRA meticulously and make decisions that are in the best interest of the American people.”
Hutchinson slammed the Biden administration’s IRA for being an example of “out-of-control spending,” which he said he opposed. The former governor argued it wouldn’t be possible to entirely repeal the legislation, but said his administration would review any provisions that hinder economic growth.
Hutchinson would also withdraw from the Paris Accords if president, he told the DCNF. Under a Hutchinson administration, the EPA in its current form “would be a thing of the past,” as it imposes too many regulations that are crippling to businesses and Americans, Hutchinson told the DCNF.
Former Vice President Mike Pence would “immediately” withdraw from the Paris Accords, a spokesperson for the former vice president told the DCNF. The nonprofit founded by the former vice president supports repealing the IRA due to the provisions related to electric vehicles (EVs),” the spokesperson said.
Pence pledged to “eliminate” the EPA in his economic policy roll out on July 26. His plan would also reallocate the EPA’s authorities to other agencies, which he argued will save over $250 billion over the next decade.
“Joe Biden’s two-year war on domestic energy production has come at a terrific cost to our nation: families and small businesses are struggling to afford increased fuel and energy prices and keep up with persistent inflation and higher costs,“ Pence said in a statement along with the unveiling of his energy plan. “On day one of my administration, we will set about reversing course to return America to the energy independent nation and global energy supplier it was when I served as Vice President.”
— Mike Pence (@Mike_Pence) August 8, 2023
Former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley would also withdraw from the Paris Accords, and she “would repeal the IRA’s green energy subsidies that could cost American taxpayers as much as $1.2 trillion,” Ken Farnaso, press secretary for Haley’s campaign, told the DCNF.
Haley rolled out her energy policy agenda on June 8 while visiting an oil rig in Texas, where she pledged to bolster American energy production while ensuring the EPA doesn’t hinder new projects, according to a press release.
“We’re going to stop controlling where they produce and how much they produce. We’re going to pull back those greenhouse subsidies and all of those green deals that Biden has put in place,” Haley told Newsmax following her policy rollout. “We’re going to make sure that we speed up the permitting so that we can get more pipelines in the mix. And more than that, always remember, a strong foreign policy is a connection to a strong energy policy.”
The IRA unlocked $370 billion for green energy initiatives, but could end up costing $1.2 trillion over the next decade, according to Goldman Sachs. The EPA is also spearheading Biden’s push to clamp down on fossil fuel-fired power plants that produce reliable and affordable energy.
Biden reentered the Paris Accords during the first month of his presidency after former President Donald Trump pulled out on the grounds that the agreement represented “another scheme to redistribute wealth out of the United States.”
North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum has made energy one of his main policy platforms of his presidential campaign, along with the economy and national security. The governor frequently argues that the way to approach energy policy in America is with “innovation over regulation.”
“Governor Burgum believes the Biden Administration has weaponized the EPA, and he has pushed back against EPA overreach as governor. By pushing to shutdown energy production through regulation, red tape and increased costs it seems as if Joe Biden’s energy plan is being written by China,” Lance Trover, spokesman for Burgum’s campaign, told the DCNF. “Governor Burgum will cut red tape, prioritize innovation over regulation, improve permitting reform, expand energy production and support technology that allows America to produce energy that is cleaner, safer and cheaper than anywhere else in the world.”
While former Texas Rep. Will Hurd acknowledged that some IRA provisions are adding to the country’s growing debt and worsening inflation, the former congressman made an argument for other provisions he supports.
“Incentivizing nuclear energy production, enhancing American manufacturing to reduce our reliance on China, retooling closed traditional energy facilities in an effort to revitalize those communities, and investing in innovative technologies like sustainable aviation fuels,” are positive portions of the IRA, Hurd told the DCNF.
The former congressman told the DCNF he would audit the EPA to analyze where cuts should be made and argued that the agency should “streamline its efforts,” while not hindering economic growth. Hurd sharply condemned the Paris Accords, highlighting that the deal “hamstrings the U.S. energy sector,” as he said to the DCNF.
Conservative radio personality Larry Elder’s administration would “heavily defund the EPA” and withdraw from the Paris Accords, he told the DCNF while slamming Biden for readmitting the country into the agreement. Elder argued the IRA is an overreach of executive power and that there are some provisions that should be “revisited,” like voluntary carbon reductions.
“I would use the bully pulpit to educate Americans on the downsides of the Democrats green agenda,” Elder told the DCNF. “I would also rely heavily on executive orders. Many so-called ‘green’ initiatives have been created via executive order, and they can be reversed the same way.”
South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott would also withdraw from the Paris Accords, a spokesperson told the DCNF. The senator has been highly critical of both the EPA and the IRA, but a spokesperson for the senator did not say what actions he would take against either if elected president.
Scott is the only GOP presidential candidate who has had to take a vote on Biden’s policies. The senator voted against the IRA, and he blamed Democrats for trying to “spend their way out of … inflation,” according to the Aiken Standard.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis will address such topics soon in an upcoming policy rollout, a spokesperson for the campaign told the DCNF. DeSantis said at a June campaign event in Texas that fast-tracking the Keystone XL pipeline is a “no-brainer,” adding that a prospective DeSantis administration would “open up all the oil and gas in the United States for development because it’s important.”
When it comes to domestic energy production, DeSantis said that “the bureaucrats have to stop holding this country up.” He called the Biden administration’s energy agenda and goals “absurd.”
While former President Donald Trump’s campaign did not immediately respond to the DCNF’s request for comment about his policies in a potential second administration, he pledged during his first term to slash billions from the EPA’s budget and rolled back nearly 100 EPA regulations.
“I will cancel Biden’s destructive Green New Deal … it’s an insane thing. I’m for the environment, I want clean water, crystal clean, I want beautiful, clean air. But what they’re doing to this country is incredible,” Trump said Aug. 5 during a speech in Columbia, South Carolina.
Biden did not immediately respond to the DCNF’s requests for comment.
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