The wind industry employs between 4,000 and 5,000 people in Colorado, according to industry group the American Wind Energy Association. The group said losing the credit would kill 37,000 jobs nationwide, while extending it would preserve 75,000 jobs.
Obama has sought to turn Romney’s opposition to that 2.2 cent per kilowatt-hour credit for wind power production into an albatross for the GOP challenger in Colorado.
Colorado's Democratic Sens. Mark Udall and Michael Bennet have urged Congress to extend the credit to preserve jobs, calling Vestas Wind Systems a cautionary example of what might happen without the incentive. The major wind turbine maker has pegged recent layoffs at a handful of its Colorado facilities on the uncertainty surrounding the expiring credit.
Both candidates also have tried to portray themselves as friends of the natural-gas industry, which is thriving in Colorado.
Obama often notes oil-and-gas production increased during his term, and has praised natural gas for providing a lower carbon-emitting energy alternative to coal.
But Romney is quick to point out a bulk of the production increase has occurred on private and state lands. He wants to open drilling on federal lands that Obama has kept off-limits to further increase oil-and-gas development.
Though Romney failed to grab the Post’s backing, he did pick one up in another battleground state, winning the endorsement of Florida’s Orlando Sentinel. That paper had backed Obama in 2008.
RealClearPolitics shows Romney with a 2.6 percentage point lead in the race for Florida’s 29 electoral votes.