What the Presidential Election Might Mean for the Chesapeake

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With all the rhetoric that’s been tossed back and forth during this campaign, we Americans are now well aware that the 2012 presidential election is the most important one in our lifetimes and perhaps U.S. history, that one choice will irreversibly doom America and the other will restore her to her former greatness, yadda yadda. But we may not have considered how presidential politics plays into conservation efforts focused on the Chesapeake Bay.

The environmental group the Chesapeake Bay Foundation does not endorse candidates but nevertheless is keeping a “close eye” on this election. If Obama wins they anticipate four more years of substantial financial support from Washington and a sympathetic EPA administrator. If Romney takes the White House, they’ll be crossing their fingers they don’t see a dip in federal funding given the Republican’s focus on cutting spending and lowering the national debt.

The League of Conservation Voters have been more aggressive politically, endorsing the president and calling the Tea Party-influenced House of Representatives the “most anti-environment” House we’ve ever had.

During campaigns, presidential candidates frequently promise results in areas traditionally outside of their purview, but one thing the president has a very direct effect on — given his powers to propose funding in the federal budget and appoint leaders of various agencies — is environmental policy.

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