I read with amusement former Congressman Charlie Wilson's recent letter to the editor in which he talked about how he "stood up" for coal when he was in Congress.
Charlie Wilson's first vote in Congress was to elect Nancy Pelosi as the speaker of the house. During his four years in Congress, he voted with her 98 percent of the time. This is a matter of public record. Nancy Pelosi, along with President Obama, are the chief architects of the War on Coal a war which has decimated Ohio's coal industry and threatens to kill thousands of jobs in Ohio. This is also a matter of public record.
Just last week, in an interview with National Public Radio (NPR), I was astonished to learn that Charlie Wilson said, "We don't need to fire Obamaand we don't need to stop any war on coal." Clearly, Charlie Wilson is in denial. He certainly is out of sync with this region's battered mining employees.
On the other hand, Congressman Bill Johnson has a demonstrated record of standing up to President Obama and fighting to protect coal jobs. Johnson authored legislation called 'The Stop the War on Coal Act' (H.R. 3409) that would prevent harmful EPA and Department of Interior regulations from going into effect that would kill underground mining. Congressman Johnson's legislation passed the House by a bipartisan vote two weeks ago. Ironically, at a recent debate in Marietta, Mr. Wilson said that he would have supported Congressman Johnson's bill. He said he would have followed Johnson's leadership.
Charlie Wilson is an affable enough guy. But he simply cannot claim to be for coal while actively supporting Nancy Pelosi and President Obama who have so feverishly worked to kill the coal industry. And while he may well have the Coal Miners Union backing him, it is obvious by the "War on Coal Fire Obama" signs that are all over Columbiana County that the "people" here are on Bill Johnson's side of Obama's war on coal.
David W. Johnson
County GOP chairman