The Campaign Issue 'That Dare Not Speak Its Name'

Everyone is talking about the rising price of oil -- everyone it seems except the people running for president.

Published: 16-Jan-2008

Oil and energy policy might seem like a natural topic for debate among those seeking the highest office in the land considering oil topped the $100 threshold earlier this month (Before settling back down around $93) and gasoline prices rose 10 cents a gallon to a national average of $3.07 this week. But oil and energy policies have generated little substantive discussion on the election trail.

There is no shortage of rhetoric about making America energy independent, and the occasional effort to feel the pain of homeowners and commuters feeling the sting of prices at the pump. But the campaign talk is largely decoupled from policy ideas capable of delivering on the rhetoric.

Michigan -- the home of the struggling American automobile industry that spearheaded the craze for the gas-guzzling SUV -- might have been a good place to jumpstart a discussion on oil since vehicles will likely be at the center of any proposal to lower oil consumption and curtail emissions. But Michigan voters are going to the polls on Tuesday knowing little about how the candidates will actually reverse the rising trend in fuel prices and growing reliance on Middle East supplies.

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