WASHINGTON -– Gov. Joe Manchin on Wednesday joined the West Virginia Coal Association, Citizens for Coal, the Federation for American Coal, members of the FACES of Coal campaign, and many West Virginia citizens and coal advocacy groups in Washington, D.C., to celebrate the American coal miner and the contributions coal mining has made to the nation.
"Coal mining is the heart and soul of West Virginia," Manchin said. "And today we are taking our message and fight to the United States Capitol.
"I believe the President's stance on Cap and Trade is wrong, and I also believe that EPA Director, Lisa Jackson, is overreaching the powers within the agency. West Virginia intends to fight back."
Manchin participated in Wednesday's press conference and rally by highlighting the role coal plays and calling on leaders in the nation's capital to reconsider and realize the impact that their decisions will have on the coal industry.
"West Virginians understand the importance of coal and how it supports our families and our communities," said Manchin. "But many Washington lawmakers and regulators do not comprehend its impact. Without coal we lose more than 22,000 direct jobs – that's more than $1.7 billion in wages for West Virginia families. We also lose important tax revenue that our schools and communities depend on, along with any possibility of national energy independence."
Wednesday's coal rally on Capitol Hill had various regional supporters from the states of West Virginia, Kentucky, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Tennessee and Ohio.