Mine Closure for Romney Rally May Not Have Been Legal

Remember the story about the Ohio coal miners who lost a day's pay and were told their attendance at a Romney rally was mandatory? It turns out that may not be been entirely legal, and the action undertaken by Murray Energy is being challenged by the Service Employees International Union, District 1199.

Murray claims they closed the mind for safety, but the Secret Service did not request the mine's closure for safety.

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A union is asking Ohio and federal labor officials to investigate whether a company violated wage and hour laws when it shuttered its coal mine to host a campaign event for Republican Mitt Romney.

Murray Energy Corp. said it closed its mine in eastern Ohio for one shift during the Aug. 14 event to ensure the site's security. Coal workers were not paid while the Beallsville mine was closed. [...]

The Secret Service says it did not request the mine's closure.

According to The Center for Responsive Politics, Murray energy has donated at least $1 million to GOP candidates during this election cycle, and at least $10,000 directly to Mitt Romney. This does not include spending on non-campaign affiliated super PACs.

Murray Energy owns the Crandall Canyon Mine, which suffered a cave-in in 2007, leading to the death six miners. In a 1,400 page review of the incident, the Mine Safety and Health Administration said the mine was "destined to fail," and Murray and its subsidiaries were fined $1.85 million.