Coal group presses senators on looming vote to kill EPA climate rules

“You wouldn’t use a hammer to fix your computer. You don’t use a folding map if you have a GPS. The point is, we don’t use yesterday’s tools to solve today’s challenges. Yet the Environmental Protection Agency has started regulating greenhouse gas emissions under a 40-year-old law that doesn’t even mention the term 'greenhouse gases.' The result could be higher energy prices and lost jobs.”

They urge listeners to press their senators to vote for the amendment, which is sponsored by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and mirrors Sen. James Inhofe’s (R-Okla.) block-EPA legislation.

The ads are running in Maine, Michigan, Missouri, Pennsylvania and other states that are home to lawmakers facing potentially tough primaries or reelection battles, such as Sens. Olympia Snowe (R-Maine) and Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.).

The industry group’s members include utilities with coal-fired power plants, such as American Electric Power, and coal companies such as Consol Energy.

Inhofe’s bill has 43 co-sponsors, including one Democrat: Sen. Joe Manchin (W.Va.). But Inhofe is wooing other centrist Democrats, such as Sen. Ben Nelson (Neb.).

However, other Democratic amendments will likely siphon votes from the McConnell-Inhofe plan, which faces high hurdles to reaching 60 votes.

Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) has a plan that would block EPA rules for two years, while Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) has filed an amendment that would exempt agriculture from the EPA rules and codify EPA’s “tailoring” rule that shields smaller emitters from regulation.