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Representative Ed Whitfield

Representing the 1st District of Kentucky

Whitfield Statement on Tonight's State of the Union Address

Jan 28, 2014
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Rep. Ed Whitfield (KY-01), Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Energy and Power, today released the following statement in anticipation of President Obama’s State of the Union Address. 

“Tonight, President Obama will devote a considerable amount of his State of the Union address talking about climate change, which should be unnerving to anyone in America who has not given up looking for a job.  Through his extreme actions, the President is making America the only country in the world where you cannot build a new coal fired power plant because the technology needed for compliance with his regulations is not commercially viable. 

“While I recognize climate change may be an issue some people care about, the President’s extreme actions on the matter are of little comfort to those who cannot find a job and are worried about how they are going to make ends meet.  Over 90 percent of Kentucky and nearly 40 percent of America get their electricity from coal-fired power plants.  If we eliminate this primary source of electricity, we will only be sending more jobs overseas where coal fired power plants are being built every week.

“It is not a coincidence that under this President that our workforce participation rate is at its lowest levels since the Jimmy Carter Administration.  The President simply cannot say he is committed to job creation when he is promising to bankrupt the coal industry and destroy affordable electricity in the process.  As the 2014 congressional session progresses, I will continue working on behalf of Kentuckians to push back against the President’s extreme agenda that does little to put Americans back to work, which is what both the people across the country and I truly care about.”

According to a recent Wall Street Journal poll, 91 percent of respondents listed creating jobs as an absolute priority for 2014, while only 27 percent – the lowest ranked issue – believe climate change should be an absolute priority.  Similarly, a recent Pew Research poll found that only 29 percent of those living in the United States believe global warming should be a top priority for President Obama and Congress in 2014.

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