LOGAN, W.Va – United Citizens for Coal 10563222_674533305964419_4503646227473895732_nPresident Roger Horton has issued the following statement regarding Friday’s passage of the Omnibus Spending Bill by Congress.

“Over the past seven years, President Obama has systematically decimated the nation’s coal industry, destroying tens of thousands of jobs, bankrupting families, communities and threatening the economies of entire states.  Today the Congress passed an Omnibus Spending Bill that effectively removes budget concerns for the remainder of Obama’s term in office. It funded many of his pet projects, including funding to pursue the EPA’s war on coal and coal mining families.

“The bill passed the House overwhelmingly by a 316-113 vote, with 150 Republicans joining Democrats in passing the bill. The Senate later backed the bill by a 65-33 margin. Missing from the bill was any help for current coal miners, laid off coal miners or retirees who have lost or may lose the jobs, their pensions or their health care.  I guess when push came to shove; we weren’t important enough and ended up given away as a bargaining chip for something ‘more important.’”

“But our coal miners and their families, and most especially our retirees and children, are not bargaining chips. We are men and women who have worked hard to provide this nation with the standard of living so many others enjoy. We have given everything … and in far too many cases … we have given our lives, to feed the nation’s ever-growing need for energy, to fight our wars and build our cities.

“Every time we have been needed, we stepped up to the task and met the needs of this nation.  Today, our hard work was repaid yet again with ‘scrip’ – the worthless currency of Congressional promises.

“We are men and women, retirees and children who should not be worrying about whether we will have a job or a pension, or a roof over our heads, tomorrow. But due to this president and the sellout of our people by the National Democratic Party and, yes, by our union leadership, far too many of us spend all our days doing exactly that – worrying about tomorrow.

“And it isn’t just Obama and the Democrats.  The Republicans now control both houses of Congress. We expected much more from them by now. We expected all those bills that had been bottled up in Committee by the Democrats when they were in control – those bills that would have reversed the Obama war on coal – to have been quickly passed by Congress and vetoed by Obama so we could put pressure on our coal state Democrats for an override vote.  We may not have been successful, but at least we would see someone fighting for us.  Instead, we get the passage of an Omnibus Spending Bill that essentially gives away the budget leverage that could have been used to secure the passage of many of these bills.

“Today, I serve notice on the members of Congress. If you expect the votes of coal miners, we expect you to put our needs and those of our families first. This isn’t negotiable and our allegiance is NOT something you can take for granted.  The clock is ticking and you can very easily be voted out just as you were voted in.”

About

Citizens for Coal is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping maintain the vitality and productivity of the coal industry in West Virginia. Our organization consists of any member of the community that is involved directly or indirectly with the coal industry and understands its importance within our state’s economy.

Citizens for Coal is dedicated to promoting awareness and education of the importance of the coal industry for the continued growth and development of our state. As a group, we express our thoughts and concerns to law makers both at home and in our country’s capital whose decisions will have long-lasting impacts on our livelihoods. We foster a ‘we can’ mentality that reminds us all that together we can make a difference. We understand that coal can and should be mined using the most efficient and safe technologies to date. We take pride in the fact that as workers, we are well trained and skilled at our trades.

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