Monday, September 26, 2016

AynRandy to Coal Miners: Fuck You and Your Union, Too

It's such a perfect lying cop-out for the Tribble-Toupeed One:  No one can have insurance and pension relief from their criminal former employers until everyone gets the exact same thing.

Thus preventing anyone from getting anything.  Except of course for corrupt Big Coal, which skates as always. So conservative and libertarian at the same time!

Meanwhile Democratic Senate candidate Jim Gray is standing up for Kentucky coal miners.

The bill, currently before the U.S. Senate, would use some of the $490 million each year that flows through the federal Abandoned Mine Land program to rescue the health benefits for union coal miners whose companies have gone out of business. It would also shore up a United Mine Workers of America pension fund that is on the brink of collapse following the 2008 recession.

The bill would preserve the health benefits of about 3,500 Kentucky coal miners, most who worked for Patriot Coal, which filed for bankruptcy in 2012. It would also protect the retirement benefits of about 9,800 retired Kentucky coal miners who were members of the United Mine Workers of America labor union.

U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, who like many fellow Republicans has criticized Obama's energy policies as a "war on coal", does not support the bill in its current form. He says he supports the concept of the bill, but only if it provides relief for all coal miners, not just those who joined a labor union.

"If they will give the coal companies relief, and the nonunion workers relief as well as the union workers, I could be persuaded to be for it," Paul told The Associated Press in an interview. "For something to get passed, it has to please more people."

Paul is seeking re-election in November after ending his presidential campaign earlier this year. He faces Democrat Jim Gray, the mayor of Lexington, Kentucky's second-largest city.

Gray said he if he were a senator he would vote for the bill because "you don't let the perfect get in the way of the good."

"I think it represents a positive, bipartisan step. I think it shows that at least some members of the Senate can cross party lines and work together. And that's what I promised I'd do," Gray said. "It's (Paul's) usual endless rhetoric that prevents anything good from being done."

The bill passed the Senate Finance Committee on Thursday by a vote of 18-8, with six republicans joining all 12 Democrats to vote "yes."

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