Mitch McConnell Loves Coal!

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Mitch McConnell is telling everyone he can to ignore Barack Obama’s Clean Power Plan. Click here to help send him a Kentucky Derby message that in order to win the race to a clean energy future, he must first get off his ass, coal.


I am going to tell you something that seems obvious, but goes much deeper than you may know: Mitch McConnell Loves Coal! He’ll say or do anything to make sure that we never ween ourselves off this dirty fuel that is the single largest air polluter in the U.S.1

First he sent a letter to all 50 governors telling them to ignore the President’s Clean Power Plan, which would reduce pollution from coal-fired power plants.2 But a national campaign of lies was not enough for Mitch. Next, he told foreign leaders not to enter into a United Nations pact with the U.S. to reduce our global warming emissions by 28 percent, even though other nations promised to make cuts too.3

But here’s the embarrassing secret about Mitch’s coal derby: Kentucky regulators and utilities are already planning to comply with the president’s ambitious plan to move away from coal and protect our health and climate.4 So I came up with a plan to help send Mitch a message: Kentuckians are ready for a clean energy future, so stop trying to obstruct the inevitable. Now picture this — a fleet of public transit buses in Kentucky’s largest city, Louisville, carrying a huge advertisement telling Mitch McConnell to get off his ass coal. If we can plaster that message on a fleet of public transit buses during Kentucky’s biggest event of the year, the Kentucky Derby, you can be sure that Mitch will hear and see it for himself. Can you please chip in $50 or more to help Mitch McConnell get BUS(ted)?

  • $500 buys one bus to carry our ad for one month;
  • $1,500 gets our ad on three buses for a month;
  • $3,000 gets our ad on six buses;
  • $5,000 get us an entire fleet of buses to carry our ad throughout Louisville

Mitch McConnell keeps trying to sound a false alarm that cleaning up coal-fired power plants would cost Kentucky and the country jobs. But according to the Bureau for Labor Statistics the coal industry employs only 0.06% of U.S. private sector workers. And even in Mitch’s home state of Kentucky, only 0.64% of the state’s workforce is employed by the coal industry.5 It’s clear that the only thing Mitch loves more than coal is the money that the coal industry keeps giving him. During the 2013-2014 election cycle, the coal industry gave Mitch nearly $300,000, which was three times more than they gave to the second highest recipient.6 It’s a classic case of quid pro coal.

That’s why at this year’s Kentucky Derby, we want to show Mitch McConnel that when it comes to our energy future, he’s simply backing the wrong horse. Kentuckians are betting on real stallions of clean energy like solar, wind and geothermal. With your help, we can let Mitch know that when it comes to the Clean Power Plan, his stance is ass backwards. Please click here and chip in whatever you can to get these buses rolling to the derby.

Thanks for all that you do,

Anthony and the Kentucky Derby Clean Team

1. Union of Concerned Scientists: Coal generates 44% of our electricity, and is the single biggest air polluter in the U.S.

2. Clines, Francis X. Mitch McConnell’s Drive to Keep the Coal Fires Burning. New York Times. March 25, 2015.

3. Cama, Timothy. McConnell Warns Countries Against UN Climate Plan. The Hill. March 31, 2015.

4. Chemnick, Jean. KY. Regulators Walk Tight Rope on Clean Power Plan. E and E Publishing, LLC. March 4, 2015.

5. United States Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2014.

6. Center for Responsive Politics, Coal Mining: Top Recipients.