Coal Caucus Takes the Floor

As the Chairman of the Congressional Coal Caucus, I will keep pushing back against the War on Coal and make sure our miners have a voice in Washington. On Tuesday, the Caucus took over the House floor for a discussion of the importance of coal to our nation.

Coal power is the backbone of our affordable and reliable electricity grid. Coal communities are not big cities and do not get the same attention. But my friends in the Coal Caucus and I will not be silent as the President attacks our way of life.

To watch the entire discussion, click here. For a few highlights, click below:

Holding VA Officials Accountable

Since the scandals at the VA began unfolding last year, only three VA officials in the entire country have been fired. No one is being held accountable. And waiting lists at the VA are now longer than when the scandals began breaking, with the number of veterans waiting one month or more up 50%.

The care some of our veterans are receiving is unacceptable. That is why Congress acted to provide more flexibility for the VA Secretary to terminate employees who are failing our veterans.

The Wheeling Intelligencer wrote about the bill and the importance of holding the VA accountable on Friday.

Ready to Fight for You

It is expected that the Obama Administration will release its final version of the so-called “Clean Power Plan” on Monday. This is the regulation that will cause coal-fired power plants to shut down and more coal mines to close for good.

And for what? The rule is intended to cut carbon emissions in the United States. But, according to the United Nations, if we shut down *every* coal-fired power plant, we would only reduce CO2 in the atmosphere by only 0.002%.

Along with Reps. Jenkins and Mooney, I authored a letter to Gov. Tomblin to not comply with this destructive rule. I have spoken out against it many times and the House has passed legislation to put the rule on hold if it is too costly(which it will be in West Virginia). We will keep up the fight against these destructive regulations.

Reining in the Regulatory State

Just because the government can issue a regulation, doesn’t mean it should. And when the bureaucrats in Washington overstep their authority, Congress needs to be there to rein them in.

That is why the House passed the Regulations from the Executive In Need of Scrutiny(REINS)Act on Wednesday. This legislation would require any major rule that costs more than $100 million be voted upon by the Congress before it can be implemented.

In West Virginia, all regulations are given an up-or-down vote by the legislature. Why shouldn’t it be the same for the federal government? I support the REINS Act and look forward to the Senate voting on this important legislation.

August in West Virginia

Congress is on its annual “August recess” but it’s no vacation. Today, my day began with a tour of Superior Fibers in Reedsville and a meeting with the mayor of Kingwood to stay updated on the area. This afternoon, I attended the ribbon-cutting at the National Guard Readiness Center in Morgantown.  

Next week, we’ll be in Gilmer, Mineral, and Ohio Counties as well as attending the West Virginia Coal Association annual meeting. The time in West Virginia allows me and my staff to keep our priorities in line with the First District.

As always, our office is ready to assist you with any concerns you have with the federal government. You may find the contact information for your nearest office at the bottom of this email.

Have a great week,

David McKinley

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