Senate GOP uses new EPA rule to attack Dems in 7 competitive races

Source: Jennifer Yachnin, E&E reporter • Posted: Saturday, September 21, 2013

The campaign arm for Senate Republicans wasted no time today criticizing Democratic lawmakers and candidates in seven states over U.S. EPA’s new proposals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from new coal plants

In a news release targeting Sen. Kay Hagan (D-N.C.), the National Republican Senatorial Committee wrote that the proposed rules would “cripple the coal industry.”

The releases also aim to tie GOP targets like Hagan, who won her first term by defeating then-Sen. Elizabeth Dole (R) in 2008, to President Obama’s administration.

“Kay Hagan is a foot soldier for Barack Obama who puts the Obama agenda ahead of North Carolinians nearly 94% of the time,” NRSC spokeswoman Brook Hougesen said in a statement. Tying in Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), she added, “The radical Obama-Reid-Hagan anti-energy agenda empowers the EPA to take an even more aggressive role than it has today, meaning more red tape regulation, more government headaches, and more costs that would cripple entire industries and destroy jobs. North Carolinians know that energy is a precious resource that families and our country rely on, not an evil that must be eliminated.”

Although Republicans have made Hagan a top target, Democrats point to recent polling data that show Hagan with a double-digit lead over each of her would-be GOP rivals to assert that the first-term senator will be able to hold onto her seat in 2014 (E&E Daily, Sept. 12).

The NRSC targeted six other Democrats with similar attacks today, including vulnerable Sens. Mark Begich (Alaska) and Mary Landrieu (La.). Republicans also took aim at Reps. Gary Peters (Mich.) and Bruce Braley (Iowa) and West Virginia Secretary of State Natalie Tennant, all of whom are competing in open-seat Senate races. And the committee issued a statement attacking Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes, who is looking to challenge Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).