|Romney and Ohio miners (Getty Images)|
Ohio is ranked 10th in coal production and gets 86 percent of its electricity from coal, and "is among the most crucial prizes in the presidential campaign," Cockerham writes. Virginia and Colorado are also significant coal producers and "key battleground" states. There's also a lot of talk about what a Romney presidency could mean for the industry in the top coal-producing states: Wyoming, West Virginia, Kentucky, Pennsylvania and Texas.
Romney is telling voters that the Obama administration is waging a "war on coal," the battle cry of many state and federal lawmakers from coal-producing states. He's promised to reverse Environmental Protection Agency regulations if elected, and recently attended a political rally at an Ohio underground coal mine. Obama has played up coal differently, suggesting the country should invest in "clean coal" technologies. His campaign has circulated radio ads in Ohio "hammering on that theme and portraying Romney as the one who's really anti-coal," Cockerham reports. (Read more)