Obama Faces Fresh Criticism for 'War on Coal'
The Obama administration is facing new accusations over regulations targeting the coal industry in what critics call the White House's ongoing "war on coal."
House Republicans say the administration has not only been working to push through harmful regulations, but has played politics by trying to hide their own predictions of job losses.
In one instance, when the administration found that a new regulation would kill 7,000 jobs and hurt economies in 22 states, they rewrote that report in a way that changed the numbers.
"There was awareness among the decision makers that it would have the effect of lowering the estimated job loss figures," Robert A. Knox from the Office of Inspector General recently admitted to Congress.
But Obama officials deny the administration was trying to cover up the negative impact.
"Our investigation did not discover their motivations behind that decision. There was no evidence that it was politically motivated," Knox said.
Still, Republicans say the facts point to political manipulation.
"It looks as though they were attempting to cook the books just simply based off some of the potential outcome of the loss of job numbers," Rep. Scott Tipton, R-Colo., said.
While that example highlights what happens behind the scenes in the war on coal, other aspects are out in the open. Rep. Tipton said President Barack Obama has acknowledged his coal policies will cost the economy over $1 billion a year.
Tipton also cited a recent analysis which found Obama's coal policies could kill 500,000 jobs and raise energy prices $1,400 extra per year for an average family.