COAL IS king, at least it was until Barack Obama entered the White House.
The last three plus years has seen Obama and his administration drain much of the life out of the coal industry. While not dead, coal mining in our region is on life support.
President Obama would rather explore unproven energy alternatives rather than make use of our nation's most abundant and sensible natural resource -- coal. We have said on more than one occasion that coal is the one -- and possibly only -- way to get the United States off its dependent on foreign oil and, in the process, begin to lift our economy out of its lingering doldrums.
U.S. coal reserves are plentiful -- good for at least 400 more years -- and easily obtainable. However such arguments fall on deaf Obama and U.S. Environmental Protection?Agency ears. Should he be re-elected in November, the coal industry needs to brace itself for continued hardship.
Obama's presidential challenger appears to have a much friendlier view of coal.
Mitt Romney will address coal miners and their families during a campaign stop Tuesday in the Ohio Valley. The Republican standard bearer is scheduled to visit the Century Mine near Beallsville at 12:30 p.m.
The mine is owned by Murray Energy Corp. CEO Robert Murray plans to bus in his employees and their families in support of Romney.
It is refreshing knowing that the next man who may occupy the Oval Office cares about coal. Romney's trip to Eastern Ohio may serve as a harbinger of hope for better times for the coal industry.
Only time will tell how committed Romney and newly minted running mate Paul Ryan, R-Wis., are to coal and the Ohio Valley. For the time being, however, Romney is doing a much better job in mining our support.