U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis is high on coal, and says he wishes another federal politician from Illinois felt the same way.
Davis toured coal plants in Carlinville and Champaign, and says rules in place for decades have prevented as much coal as possible from being mined, and that has to change, if for no other reason than the economy.
"We have to make sure that coal mining families have jobs," says Davis (R-Taylorville). "And that means making sure we have a transportation artery up and down our Mississippi River, so that we can export the coal overseas, since politicians before I got to Washington said we couldn't burn as much Illinois coal."
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Davis says many of the discussions he has with federal officials center around making coal viable, which he claims is something the Obama Administration has waged war on.
"If there's a concern that the EPA administrator has, she comes in front of my committe on a regular basis," says Davis, "and we're able then to have a question and answer, back and forth period, to talk about what some of their rules might mean to the miners back home."
Davis says there's been a lot of work that's been done to reduce coal emissions by, he claims, 90 percent in the last several decades. He says America can be energy independent and keep coal in the mix.