Obama’s War on Coal Also a War on Red States and the Poor

I know that you remember back in the day when Obama was first running for president and he promised to bankrupt the coal industry.

Last week he made good on this promise with new EPA regulations. As Stephen Moore points out today in the Washington Times, these regulations are going to punish red states while having little impact on blue states.

Mr. Obama announced last week the toughest environmental regulations ever against coal. This is part of the president’s war on coal that he announced when he was running for president in 2008. He has long admitted these policies to reduce emissions from coal burning electric power plants by one-third below 2005 levels by 2030 will “bankrupt” the coal industry. It’s working. Coal towns are being vaporized across America and coal companies are going out of business.

But the pain from the new EPA rules won’t be evenly distributed across America. Far from it. The coal producing states like West Virginia and Wyoming will see massive job losses and increases in electric utility costs. The nationwide costs will be about $100 billion a year eventually or a reduction in GDP by about one-half percentage point, the Heritage Foundation finds. But for heavily impacted states — Republican areas in the Midwest, South and mountain states — the costs will reach about $1,200 a year to average families. Mr. Obama’s policies that have had such a crushing effect on middle-income family finances are about to get a whole lot worse.

The liberal coastal states will feel only modest effects because they don’t use much coal. …

The de facto tax that Mr. Obama wants to impose on American coal is doubly dastardly because it’s impact will be felt hardest in relatively poorer states. And because Census Bureau data confirms that poor households spend 4 times more of their income on energy than rich families, the Obama policy will make income inequality much worse. But of course the upper crust Manhattan liberals who fund the Sierra Club and Mr. Obama and profess to care so much about the poor, can live with that. So much for “environmental justice.

And then there’s this interesting tidbit from Mr. Moore’s piece:

It’s time to label the Obama green policies what they truly are: steep taxes on red state America. By the way, many purple states like Pennsylvania, Ohio and Virginia also get hammered by Mr. Obama’s climate change agenda.

Yesterday on “Meet the Press,” the media’s latest darling, Gov. John Kasich (RINO-O), lapped up F. Chuck Todd’s reference to the Time mag (rag) article referring to him as the “Pope Francis” candidate, and went on to say that he doesn’t agree with the Bishop of Rome about capitalism, but does tend to go along the environmentalism pap. Newsflash: those two things are completely inconsistent. Wouldn’t it have been nice if, on the Fox GOP “Debate,” someone had asked the governor of Ohio about how these regulations are going to hurt his state instead of asking about a feud with Rosie O’Donnell?

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