Hillary Clinton made a pretty honest announcement at Sunday night’s Democratic town hall on CNN.
“We’re going to put a lot of coal miners and coal companies out of business,” she said, in response to the question: “Make the case to poor whites who vote Republican why they should vote for you and your economic policies.”
Even President Obama’s former advisor David Axelrod noted the oddity of Clinton's potentially damaging answer.
We’ve got to move away from coal and fossil fuels, but not the people who worked to produce energy with those resources, she insisted.
Awkward opening line to answer: "We're going to put a lot of coal miners out of business." #DemTownHall— David Axelrod (@davidaxelrod) March 14, 2016
Yeah, I’m not following either.
One social media user noted that Clinton’s jarring comments are likely to threaten her support in key swing states like Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia, where coal is still an important industry.
Wow. Can't believe she actually said this...sounds like a candidate trying to lose OH, PA, VA in the fall. https://t.co/ZkKILFIOiQ— Dave Wasserman (@Redistrict) March 14, 2016
Ohio, Virginia and Pennsylvania are three of the country’s major coal-producing states. A 2014 ranking put Pennsylvania in fourth place, Ohio in 11th and Virginia in 15th. Outside of these three, other coal-producing states are not likely to forgive Clinton for her statement, like Texas. The Dallas Morning News predicts that clip will fuel many negative ads should she be the Democrats’ nominee.
Americans who live in coal-producing regions are already concerned about President Obama's regulatory Clean Power Plan. They're not about to vote for someone who just pledged to forward his legacy.