The words exited Mitch McConnell's mouth two weeks ago shortly after the election, but I'm sharing them today because it greatly amuses me.
During an appearance at the University of Louisville, the Senate majority leader subtly admitted that ending President Obama's so-called "war on coal" will not actually bring back coal jobs or the coal industry.
Moreover, and much to my amusement, McConnell also said he is not willing to spend money to help people who've lost their jobs.
In a [November 11th] appearance at the University of Louisville, he tamped down any expectations that coal jobs would come back. “We are going to be presenting to the new president a variety of options that could end this assault,” McConnell told attendees. Then he added “Whether that immediately brings business back is hard to tell because it’s a private sector activity.”
McConnell also noted that he did not intend to spend any government dollars to help those who have lost coal jobs and may not regain them. “A government spending program is not likely to solve the fundamental problem of growth,” McConnell argued. “I support the effort to help these coal counties wherever we can but that isn’t going to replace whatever was there when we had a vibrant coal industry.”
For McConnell to tell his constituents in Kentucky that the jobs probably aren't coming back and that he won't lift a finger to help those who've lost jobs is especially amusing to me because Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton actually did pledge to spend money to help them. Clinton proposed spending billion of dollars to assist and retrain workers who've been displaced throughout Appalachia and coal country.
I don't particularly delight in the plight of others, but voters had a choice to make and they chose the party and candidates who pledged to fuck them over for the umpteenth time. They also voted for the party and candidates who pledged to take away their healthcare, but that's another topic.
The so-called "war on coal" doesn't actually exist so, naturally, ending a thing that never existed won't bring jobs back. It's true the Obama administration drafted new regulations that would force ancient coal-fired power plants to clean up their act, but those regulations have been tied up in court since before the regulations were even finalized and published. Very few new regulations have actually made it into law to be enforced.
The force that is really responsible for the demise of coal is actually the Infallible, Revered, Holy, Supreme, Invisible Guiding Hand of the Free Market.
Market forces have driven coal toward ruin in America, not regulations or a "war on coal." Mitch McConnell evidently knows this, but telling voters that you're going to end Obama's war against them sounds sexy.
Green energy sources such as solar and wind have already become cheaper than coal and global demand for coal has decreased.