Smith Brings to “War on Coal” to TV (Watch Video)

Tom Smith’s new television ad puts the spotlight on an out-of-work miner who accuses Sen. Bob Casey of supporting President Obama’s “war on coal”.

“If Bob Casey is re-elected, we could lose even more jobs,” says miner Colt Bowman. “But worse: we could lose our way of life.”

Smith, a former coal miner and coal company owner, has hammered Casey for months on his votes for greater regulation of the industry.

“That’s why I’m supporting Tom Smith for Senate. He’ll fight for us because he’s one of us,” Bowman says.

The ad is airing in central and western Pa.

Casey Campaign Manager Larry Smar said Smith’s coal money was funding an off-base ad.

“Tom Smith made a fortune as a coal company owner and he has already dropped $17 million of that fortune into running attack ads like this one,” he said.

“Bob Casey has taken a commonsense approach that protects public health from dangers like mercury pollution while promoting Pennsylvania jobs.  Bob Casey has been a supporter of clean coal and of measures to speed the development of carbon capture and storage.”

AFL-CIO President Richard L. Trumka, himself a former miner from southwest Pa., also responded to the ad.

“Republicans claim that Sen. Casey has conducted a war on coal, which is insulting to miners. Smith doesn’t explain that last year employment in the coal mining industry reached a 15-year high,” he said.

Smith was formerly a member of the United Mine Workers before he started his company. His coal operation was mining more than a million tons of coal a year and employed over one-hundred people at the time he sold them.

And in general the “war on coal” theme may be off base. There’s significant evidence that the real reason coal is losing ground is Marcellus shale as much or more than the President.

Keegan Gibson, Managing Editor contributed to this report.

October 23rd, 2012 | Posted in Front Page Stories, Senate, Top Stories | 6 Comments

6 thoughts on “Smith Brings to “War on Coal” to TV (Watch Video)”

  1. Big Dan says:

    HI, I’M COLT THE COAL MINER WITH THE SOUTHERN ACCENT ALTHOUGH I LIVE IN PENNSYLVANIA. MY BROTHER IS NOT JOE NOT THE PLUMBER. BARACK HUSSEIN OBAMA AND BOB CASEY BLEW UP OUR MINE AND OUR WAY OF LIFE, THEN GOT PICKS AND STARTED SWINGING THEM AT US AFTER THEY BLEW UP OUR MINE AND WAY OF LIFE. THE COAL BARON WHO OWNS THE MINE DIDN’T FIRE ME, ALTHOUGH HE DID: IT WAS BARACK HUSSEIN OBAMA & BOB CASEY.

  2. Steve says:

    PAGuy: you have to be kidding!

  3. PAguy says:

    Tom Smith and the Republicans understand that you can’t have everything you want handed to you on a silver platter. Sure, mercury and other pollutants cause birth defects. Yeah, people who work in mines or near factories get respiratory diseases or cancer. People who get too much sun get skin cancer. If I want a job in the mines and am willing to take my chances, and my family would rather take their chances than not have me get a paycheck, then it is nobody’s business but ours. If you do not want to live in PA because of mercury, then move somewhere else. If you do not like smog, then get out of the cities. We have always had jobs in coal, and you do not come in and tell a whole group of workers that they have to sacrifice their jobs so other people can live in their safe little bubble. It’s overused, but I bet more people are killed by cars than mercury OR respiratory diseases.

  4. Marcia says:

    Casey and Obama have a symbiotic relationship. Coal has been attacked by Obama and Lisa Jackson @ EPA, yet clean-coal technology is better than ever. The industry has been decimated because the people working in the coal-fields are sacrificial lambs for his big-money Sierra Club donors. Furthermore, coal miners are not Obama’s selected constituents. If both are reelected, natural gas fracking will be next. Obama couldn’t crush it in his first term because it was an evolving industry and much of the permitting has been regulated by the Commonwealth. But he will be under no restraints if he gets 4 more years. When he goes after fracking, a lot of people from lease holders thru engineers and equipment operators will be hurt financially. People know this and they will vote for Tom Smith because he understands the pitfalls that await them.

  5. Isaac L. says:

    Ironically, it’s that natural gas fracking that they’re all so fond of that’s really killing coal. Cheap, cleaner, efficient… natural gas is great! I wonder if this ad will only serve to remind Republicans that Mitt Romney waged a war on coal when he was governor of Massachusetts, attacking a coal plant at a press conference several years ago, saying it “kills.” Of course, Mr. Smith’s base of support is the good people at the Indiana Armstrong Patriots tea party group that he founded and chaired, whose ideals are uncompromising, so I imagine they’ll all be voting for Gary Johnson over some serial flip-flopper like Romney.

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