In 2008, he urged the Bush administration to roll back the so-called "ethanol mandate'' which requires the federal government to annually boost biofuel production, mainly through corn-based ethanol. When he entered the race in August, renewable energy lobbyists said they would wait and see whether he would strike a different tone as a presidential candidate.
Well, now they've waited and seen, and they don't like it. The Iowa Renewable Fuels Association put out a statement today that calls his oil-heavy energy plan "a one-two punch in Iowa's economic gut.'' It also assails the television ad he is running in Iowa that promotes oil and natural gas.
"When Gov. Perry entered the presidential race, Iowa's renewable fuels community said it would keep an open mind and not hold past actions by the Governor in his state role against him,'' said Walt Wendland, president of the association. "But we also noted it would be important going forward to determine if Perry is running for President of the United States or President of Texas. Unfortunately, that answer seems to be leaning heaving toward Texas.''
While the ethanol issue doesn't seem to have the same potency in presidential politics that it used to, Perry needs all the friends he can get in Iowa, where Mitt Romney and Herman Cain lead the polls.