How close is the United States to reaching the elusive goal of energy independence?
President Obama last week set a goal of cutting oil imports by one-half by 2020, while GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney said in his energy plan that he could make North America energy-independent by 2020. House Energy and Commerce Committee holds a hearing on that Romney's goal on Thursday. Presidents dating back to President Nixon in 1973 have called for weaning the country off of imported oil.
But what does the phrase "energy independence" exactly mean? Is the goal of becoming energy-independent really possible? And what policies could the government, including the executive branch and Congress, put in place to get closer to this goal?