DENVER (AP) - The wind energy boom President Barack Obama touted as key to his energy strategy has hit a wall in an election-year dispute over taxpayer support.
The government poured billions of dollars into renewable energy, hoping to unleash a wave of good-paying, high-tech manufacturing jobs. But federal spending to help develop green energy has dropped 75 percent since 2009 amid tea party criticism that it's wasteful.
Congress' failure to extend past December the production tax credit, a wind-energy tax break first signed into law by President George H.W. Bush, has contributed to job cutbacks from South Carolina to Washington state.
Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney and Obama collided during the campaign over the tax credit's fate. Romney has called for its expiration, while Obama supports its renewal.
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