McConnell Offers Prayers, Nothing Else, in Wake of Deadly Coal Blast
Breaking a week-long silence, Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) took to the Senate floor this afternoon to weigh in on last week’s explosion that killed 29 miners in West Virginia. In sum, the minority leader reveals that (1) mining is dangerous, (2) he’s praying for the affected families, and (3) nothing else. The comments are a full two sentences long:
While we were in recess, the people of West Virginia experienced a very difficult mine safety experience. Our neighbors in West Virginia, like Kentucky, are big coal producers, and we’ve had our share in the commonwealth of Kentucky over the years of mining disasters and our hearts and prayers go out to our neighbors in West Virginia as they attempt to recover from the latest tragedy in what is obviously a very dangerous profession and that is the mining of coal.
We also witnessed a great tragedy overseas, the death of the Polish President …
Perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised that one of the biggest recipients of Massey campaign cash has remained largely reticent in the wake of the disaster. Still, while all eyes have been on West Virginia, several Massey-owned projects in Kentucky have continued to accumulate safety violations like those that were cited at the West Virginia mine prior to the disaster. For example, the Freedom Mine #1 — a Massey-owned project in Pike County, Ky. — has run up 66 safety violations in the seven days since the explosion. Twenty-three of those were deemed “significant and substantial,” indicating that they are “reasonably likely to result in a reasonably serious injury or illness.”
Process Energy’s #1 Mine, also in Pike County, has been cited with seven violations in the last week, with three falling into the S&S category.
One wonders to what extent the workers in those mines appreciate McConnell’s offering of prayer, in lieu of a commitment to try to prevent the next big blast.