Obama’s “Consistent” Record on Coal

Thursday, October 18th, 2012 and is filed under Blog, Issues

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Obama employed a useful strategy during Tuesday night’s debate.  When pressed about the failures of his record, even on policies that he once openly flaunted, Obama denied that his policies ever existed.  Nowhere is this more evident than when he spoke about energy policy.

OBAMA: “So what I’ve tried to do is be consistent. With respect to something like coal, we made the largest investment in clean coal technology to make sure that even as we’re producing more coal, we’re producing it cleaner and smarter.” (President Barack Obama, Presidential Debate, Hempstead, NY, 10/16/12)

Reality: During the 2008 campaign, Obama openly bragged that his cap and trade bill will bankrupt coal-fired plants. “So, if somebody wants to build a coal plant, they can — it’s just that it will bankrupt them, because they are going to be charged a huge sum for all that greenhouse gas that’s being emitted.” (Sen. Barack Obama, Interview With The San Francisco Chronicle’s Editorial Board, San Francisco Chronicle, 1/17/08)

Also, never forget Joe Biden’s moments of candor:

No Coal Plants Here In America.” (Joe Biden, Remarks At A Campaign Event, Maumee, OH, 9/16/08)
We’re Not Supporting Clean Coal.” (Joe Biden, Remarks At A Campaign Event, Maumee, OH, 9/16/08)

In fact, the Obama administration has such a visceral hatred for coal that they are now shutting down construction projects that have very little to do with coal, yet are deemed to be coal projects.  Take a look at this story concerning construction of an airport runway in southwest Virginia:

Officials from two Southwestern Virginia counties say a project vital to the area’s economic development has been held up for years because of a dispute with federal regulators over what is an airport and what is a coal mine.

Local leaders say the three-year battle with the U.S. Office of Surface Mining over plans to extend the runway at Grundy Municipal Airport has cost taxpayers in this poverty-stricken corner of Appalachia millions of dollars in lost opportunities, and a list of regulatory hurdles remains before construction can even begin.

“We were attempting to permit this project as an airport project, not a coal-mining project,” said state Sen. Phillip P. Puckett, a Democrat from Lebanon who has been involved for three years with the effort to lengthen the runway from 2,200 feet to more than 5,000 feet — the length needed to comply with insurance standards for corporate jets. The holdup: Federal regulators have refused to allow the runway project to go forward without a mining permit because of the coal deposits below the land that will be dug up during construction.

“That’s where the permitting process got caught up — in determining whether it was an airport project or a mining project, by the Office of Surface Mining in Washington,” Mr. Puckett said. “We’ve tried to resolve that with them for the last couple of years. We’ve had very little success.”

Regulators contend that a mining permit is needed because local authorities plan to sell the coal dug up in extending the runway to help finance the overall project. The Office of Surface Mining said it “will continue to work with the state, as well as other affected local and federal officials, regarding the best way to proceed with the proposed airport expansion.”

So not only will the administration shut down any coal project, they will scuttle any construction that even contains the sale of coal!

Mr. President, why don’t you man up and tell the American people the truth about your intent to eliminate all fossil fuel production in this country?  Why do you have to lie?