Congressman Morgan Griffith (R-VA) today joined a crowd of coal miners and other friends of coal at the Stand Up for American Energy Jobs Rally on the west side of the U.S. Capitol Building. Griffith was one of many lawmakers to address the rally. An excerpt from his remarks:
"Several years ago, the President said, ‘When I was asked earlier about the issue of coal, you know, under my plan of a cap and trade system, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket. Even regardless of what I say about whether coal is good or bad. Because I'm capping greenhouse gases, coal power plants, you know, natural gas, you name it, whatever the plants were, whatever the industry was, uh, they would have to retrofit their operations. That will cost money. They will pass that money on to consumers.'
"Mr. President, who do you think the ‘consumers' are? The consumers are you, they're me, they're the hardworking men and women of the United States of America who are going to pay for the policies – not only in lost jobs, but they are going to pay for the policies through skyrocketing electric rates all over this country. The President knew it, he set out to do it. …
"And he went on in that same interview to say, ‘So if somebody wants to build a coal-powered plant, they can. It's just that it will bankrupt them.'
"But ladies and gentlemen, it's not just the people building the coal power plants. It's the coal operations that are being bankrupted, it's the businesses that rely on the coal operations, it's the miners, it's the workers, it's the people who work at the factories that make things for the coal mines. It's the restaurant in Big Stone Gap that I love to go to that's no longer open because business is bad. It's the hospital in Lee County that, along with Obamacare, the bad economy forced out of business. It's the Mom-and-Pop-shops all over coal country that the President is bankrupting. And ladies and gentlemen, I'm glad that you brought the fight and the anger here to Washington, because our legislators both in the House and the Senate need to hear from you! …
"I hope that [Environmental Protection Agency Administrator] Gina McCarthy and the President will come to Central Appalachia and see the devastation that they're doing to our economy. Maybe then they will understand that the future of America is with coal, and not against coal.
"Ladies and gentlemen, I appreciate each and every one of you being here today. I hope you talk to your Congressmen and to your Senators and we get that message across."