Right Hooks

Successfully Hammering the Coal Industry

Both Obama and Clinton are working to bankrupt coal.

Business Review Board · Sep. 6, 2016

One of the biggest problems with Barack Obama isn’t that he broke his promises, it’s that he kept so many of them. For example, in 2008, he promised to bankrupt the coal industry with his climate and environmental regulatory regime. “So if somebody wants to build a coal-powered plant, they can,” he said then. “It’s just that it will bankrupt them, because they’re going to be charged a huge sum for all that greenhouse gas that’s being emitted.”

Mission almost accomplished. The Daily Caller reports, “A 2015 study found the coal industry lost 50,000 jobs from 2008 to 2012 during Obama’s first term. During Obama’s second term, the industry employment in coal mining has fallen by another 33,300 jobs, 10,900 of which occurred in the last year alone, according to federal data.” To be sure, we should note that one of the coal killers is actually competition from cheap natural gas — that’s the way the free market works. But the coal industry is caught between and Obama’s hammer and the anvil of competition.

And if Hillary Clinton is elected, you can expect her to finish the job. Back in March, she said her own policies were “going to put a lot of coal miners and coal companies out of business.” She tried to walk that back, saying her comments were taken “totally out of context from what I meant,” but everyone knows she’ll continue using the EPA just like Obama has — as an unaccountable hammer for every problem that looks like a nail.

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