Coal Ash Proposal Merits Senate Vote

U.S. Rep. David McKinley, R-W.Va., deserves the praise he has received for dealing with an important issue. He and other thoughtful, reasonable members of Congress must be frustrated his initiative has stalled in the U.S. Senate.

A few years ago, the Environmental Protection Agency revealed plans for harsh regulations on coal ash. It is a byproduct of generating electricity at coal-fired power plants.

McKinley – with bipartisan support in the House – suggested establishing reasonable regulations on coal ash. He sponsored legislation to that effect.

McKinley’s measures have passed the House five times during the past three years. Most recently, last July, his resolution was approved by a bipartisan vote of 265-155.

Progress stopped there. The measure was sent to the Senate July 29.

But there has been no vote on the proposal – perhaps because it does not fit in with the war on coal supported by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev. It may be that Reid is, as usual, acting on orders from the White House.

Reasonable Democrats in the House backed the McKinley measure. Democrat senators should tell Reid they want a vote on it.