planned to criticize Romney's support for repeal of wind-energy tax credits, and fresh attention was focused on the coal industry's role in the election. (Associated Press photo by Mary Altaffer)
Romney pledged that by the end of his second term, North America would be energy-independent. "If you don't believe in coal, if you don't believe in energy independence for America, just say it," Romney said at Murray Energy's Century Mine in Beallsville, about 25 miles southwest of Wheeling, W.Va. "If you believe the whole answer for our energy needs is wind and solar, then say that." The Obama campaign responded by noting that Romney supported anti-coal regulations as governor of Massachusetts, and said a coal-fired power plant "kills people." A story by Joe Vardon and Joe Hallett of The Columbus Dispatch is here.
Murray, Joe Craft of Alliance Resource Partners and Richard Gilliam of Cumberland Resources Corp. are among a group of coal executives who "have been among the most prolific donors to Republican candidates for office in what they see as an existential fight for survival," Manuel Quinones of Environment & Energy News reports, noting that the industry's contributions "have doubled since the 2008 election cycle, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. . . . This week a group of coal boosters from several producing states unveiled the COALition for Romney." (Read more)
The United Mine Workers of America isn't planning to endorse for president, apparently because of Obama's stands on coal, but former UMWA President Richard Trumka, now president of the AFL-CIO, stars in a direct-mail piece the labor federation is sending to 100,000 Ohio households. The piece identifies him as a "UMWA member." For a copy, via Politico, click here. Meanwhile, the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity released a video of "two small business owners whose livelihoods depend on the survival of the coal-based electricity industry."