In addition using his company as a bank, Rogers also defended President Obama’s record. In an interview with Soledad O’Brien on CNN during the Democratic Convention, Rogers defended the President, saying, “Well, from an energy sector, we're better off today than we were four years ago. Think about it. President Obama pursued all-of-the-above strategy.”
By any objective measure, Obama’s energy policy is not for all sources of energy.
Jim Rogers’ answer totally ignored President Obama’s war on coal, and the dramatic rise in gasoline prices that are a result of the President’s energy policy. In fact, because of EPA regulations, Duke Energy is closing coal-fired power plants in Indiana, North Carolina, Ohio, and South Carolina.
Rogers was a major backer of the President’s cap-and-trade energy policy. In an effort to pass the law, Rogers aggressively lobbied for the legislation including testifying in Congress and joining the United States Climate Action Partnership – a coalition of businesses and environmental activist groups that want nationwide limits on carbon dioxide emissions.
Unsurprisingly, Rogers’ support of President Obama and his policies has rewarded Duke Energy and its CEO generously. Duke Energy was a grant recipient of Obama’s stimulus plan, including a whopping $200 million award from the Department of Energy for development of smart grid technology.
Rogers was also rewarded for his DNC fundraising chore by obtaining a speaking slot at the Democratic Convention.
It’s possible that Jim Rogers’ unwavering support of President Obama is motivated by seeking a position in the next Obama Administration if the President is re-elected. In 2008, The Washington Post mentioned Rogers as a candidate to head the Energy Department, and his herculean efforts supporting Obama in 2012 might be enough to secure the post.
Rogers denied he was angling for the Energy Department post in response to a question posed by my wife Deneen Borelli at Duke Energy’s 2011 shareholder meeting. Despite his denial, his actions point to a different conclusion.
Undoubtedly, Rogers has gone above and beyond to trumpet the progressive agenda, and to support the re-election effort of President Obama.
While crony capitalism undermines free enterprise, Roger’s form of progressive cronyism offers a more dangerous version, where a CEO uses his company to support his personal political beliefs and possibly secure his next job.