This morning, the Romney campaign is airing two new television ads hitting the Obama administration on regulations that have hurt — some say crippled — the coal industry. Expect to see them on the airwaves in Ohio and Virginia.
The first is entitled “Way of Life.”
The second is entitled simply “War on Coal.”
The Obama administration’s view was never so succinctly put as it was by Biden at a 2008 rally, “No coal plants here in America.” Or perhaps it was when Obama told the San Francisco Chronicle editorial board, “If somebody wants to build a coal plant, they can, it’s just that it will bankrupt them, because they’re going to be charged a huge sum for all the greenhouse gas that’s being emitted.”
After giving then-Sen. Barack Obama a full-throttled endorsement in the 2008 presidential election, the United Mine Workers of America has decided not to endorse either Obama or the presumptive Republican nominee, Mitt Romney, in 2012.
The Obama campaign, after strong criticism from coal-industry folks and Democrats in coal country, has quietly fixed its ‘all of the above’ energy policy Web site. The original version included seven pillars of the policy but made no mention of coal — which, after all, generates nearly half the nation’s energy supply.
Earlier this year, EPA Region 1 Administrator Curt Spalding spoke at Yale University and declared:
[EPA Administrator] Lisa Jackson has put forth a very powerful message to the country. Just two days ago, the decision on greenhouse gas performance standard and saying basically gas plants are the performance standard which means if you want to build a coal plant you got a big problem. That was a huge decision. You can’t imagine how tough that was. Because you got to remember if you go to West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and all those places, you have coal communities who depend on coal. And to say that we just think those communities should just go away, we can’t do that. But she had to do what the law and policy suggested. And it’s painful. It’s painful every step of the way.
Then of course, there was the EPA official who described his job and philosophy of enforcement as “crucifying” them:
Kind of like how the Romans used to conquer villages in the Mediterranean — they’d go into a little Turkish town somewhere and they’d find the first five guys they saw and they’d crucify them. Then that little town was really easy to manage for the next few years.