Energy group: Midterm voters dislike EPA climate rule

The Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) climate rule is particularly unpopular in heavy coal production states that would be hit the hardest, a new industry-backed study finds.

The poll from the Partnership for a Better Energy Future (PBEF) released Wednesday finds that more than half of voters around the country would not be willing to pay even $1 more in monthly household energy costs because of the climate rule.

In fact, 40 percent would be less likely to vote for candidates who support the climate rule, according to the poll.

"The data released today make it abundantly clear that regulators in Washington are completely out of touch with what the rest of America wants,” said Jay Timmons, president and CEO of the National Association of Manufacturers, a member of PBEF. “The EPA’s plan to regulate carbon emissions from new and existing power plants could drastically increase energy prices for households and businesses alike.”

Critics called it a “bogus” poll and questioned the methodology.

David Di Martino, partner at the left-leaning Blue Engine Message & Media, said the poll is “nothing but a paragon of misinformation designed to prop up the false notion that Americans want dirty air filled with carbon pollution."

The survey focused on potential voters in Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Kentucky, Missouri, Montana, Pennsylvania, Tennessee and Virginia, though voters in other states were also polled.

The survey found the elderly and the middle class most strongly oppose the rule with 49 percent saying they are concerned it will squeeze the middle class.

Meanwhile, 43 percent of voters question how effective the climate rule will be at reducing climate change.

Some of the Partnership for a Better Energy Future (PBEF) members include the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, National Association of Manufacturers, and National Mining Association.