Coal Miners Forced To Attend Romney Event And Lose Day’s Pay

A group of coal miners in Ohio is angry.

They feel they would have been fired if they had not attended an August 14 event with presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney and contributed to his campaign. Even worse, they lost a day of pay for their trouble.

Republicans and Democrats alike favor filling their audiences with friendly, supportive faces. That’s nothing new. But to require employees to attend a political event and lose a day’s pay as a result is unconscionable, especially in a state like Ohio where every job is so precious.

Could this have anything to do with the fact that Murray Energy has contributed more than $900,000 to Republican candidates in the last two years?

Rawstory reports that in phone calls and emails to WWVA radio host David Blomquist, employees at the Century Mine in Ohio said they were intimidated into attending the Romney event and  feared retaliation if they did not.

“Yes, we were in fact told that the Romney event was mandatory and would be without pay, that the hours spent there would need to be made up my non-salaried employees outside of regular working hours, with the only other option being to take a pay cut for the equivalent time,” the employees told Blomquist. “Yes, letters have gone around with lists of names of employees who have not attended or donated to political events.”

As a result, Blomquist discussed their beefs on the air on August 27 with Murray Energy Chief Financial Officer Rob Moore.

This is the most amazing interview, and you can listen to it here.

Here’s an example of what Blomquist had to deal with:

[Murray Energy CFO Rob] Moore told Blomquist that managers “communicated to our workforce that the attendance at the Romney event was mandatory, but no one was forced to attend.” He said the company did not penalize no-shows.

Clearly, Mr. Moore is very skilled in the art of double-speak, but Blomquist never gives up. He does such a great job: he is never rude or angry, but persistent and demanding.

From The Cleveland Plain Dealer:

Because the company’s mine had to be shut down for “safety and security” reasons during Romney’s visit, Moore confirmed workers were not paid that day. He said miners also lose pay when weather or power outages shut down the mine, and noted that federal election law doesn’t let companies pay workers to attend political events.

Moore said he didn’t see anything negative in attending Romney’s campaign appearance with U.S. Sen. Rob Portman and Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel.

When contacted about the interview on Monday afternoon, Murray Energy spokesman Gary Broadbent emailed this statement: “Rob Moore made it abundantly clear that no employees were forced to attend the Romney event. All participation was, and always has been, completely voluntary.”

Someone is not telling the truth here.

Romney used his appearance at the coal mine to blast what he called a “war on coal” by the Obama administration that he said was costing jobs in the coal industry. No surprises there.

Nobody should be forced to attend anyone’s political event. And if Murray Energy chooses to shut the mine down, why should the miners lose a day’s pay?

Do you agree?

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Photo Credit: Dave Delay

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185 comments

Tricia Hamilton
Tricia Hamilton3 years ago

I hope no one votes for this pig. He is rich, he doesn't care about what we do for a living, or medical, medicare, housing. Think about it.

Lynda Harrison
Lynda Harrison3 years ago

I thought forcing people to attend political events, rallies, etc., was a Communist doctrine. The RePUBIC-Clown party must be getting desperate when they have to resort to this type of practice to try and demonstrate their support base.

Michael G.
Michael T.3 years ago

May B? Generally the answer to that is no. I am from Ohio originally, as are many caring posters on Care2 who in no way behave like that. It just seems to be the GOP denizens who seem to be drawn to that capacity. Lately there seem to be plenty of them.

It seems that Mike Turza (R) PA house state majority leader is also of that persuasion. He went on record after passage of PA's law to address voter fraud said "Voter ID which is going to allow Mitt Romney to win in the state of PA. DONE!" He said this and was recorded live saying it.

Mary B.
Mary B.3 years ago

Is Ohio one of those states where people like to tell others what they can and cannot do?
Is this the what you put out thing coming back around?

Kenneth M.
Kenneth M.3 years ago

David F.: Why, what a cogent reply, adding yet more insight and analysis to the story at the top. **NOT**

Again, you rightwing pinheads are the gift that just keeps on giving. Apparently you cannot help yourselves....you have this compulsion to show the rest of us what rabid slackjawed idiots you are. You might want to get yourself clinically diagnosed.

You crack me up: "My gloves are coming off, and the brass knuckles are going" Oh really? Now THAT shoud be amusing, because so far you've been swinging so wildly in your posts, so off-target, that your weak offense has been easily avoided, while you yourself have taken some hard body punches. I've avoided your head -- afterall, what damage could one expect to do by hitting a Teatard in the head? I see that a few of the other posters on here have taken their valuable time to try to educate you -- I suggest you take their gift before you get back in the ring again.

And I applaud your naive gumption. I'm quite honored to have a feral, union-busting neo-nazi like yourself blaming me for a devastated US constitution and country. My patriotic bona fides are now COMPLETE. An by the way, if your kids have are having trouble with their county, you might want to have them take a look at just who/what their father has been voting for.

Kenneth M.
Kenneth M.3 years ago

David F.: Why, what a cogent reply, adding yet more insight and analysis to the story at the top. **NOT**

Again, you rightwing pinheads are the gift that just keeps on giving. Apparently you cannot help yourselves....you have this compulsion to show the rest of us what rabid slackjawed idiots you are. You might want to get yourself clinically diagnosed.

You crack me up: "My gloves are coming off, and the brass knuckles are going" Oh really? Now THAT shoud be amusing, because so far you've been swinging so wildly in your posts, so off-target, that your weak offense has been easily avoided, while you yourself have taken some hard body punches. I've avoided your head -- afterall, what damage could one expect to do by hitting a Teatard in the head? I see that a few of the other posters on here have taken their valuable time to try to educate you -- I suggest you take their gift before you get back in the ring again.

And I applaud your naive gumption. I'm quite honored to have a feral, union-busting neo-nazi like yourself blaming me for a devastated US constitution and country. My patriotic bona fides are now COMPLETE. An by the way, if your kids have are having trouble with their county, you might want to have them take a look at just who/what their father has been voting for.

Abbe A.
Azaima A.3 years ago

criminal

Michael W.
Michael W.3 years ago

If my boss tried that I would have rebelled and called in the press.....

Dan B.
Dan Brook3 years ago

Rmoney + Lyin' Ryan = of, by, and for the rich white men

The regressive Republican Party of No is obstructionist, mean-spirited, thuggish, religiously fanatical, scientifically ignorant, corrupt, hypocritical, untrustworthy, xenophobic, racist, sexist, homophobic, evolution and global warming denying, oily, anti-environment, anti-health, anti-consumer, anti-choice, anti-birth control, anti-education, anti-99%, union busting, Medicare mashing and Social Security slashing, fiscally irresponsible, misleading, authoritarian, selfish, greedy, out-of-touch, dishonest, lacking compassion, warmongering, and otherwise dangerous.

Don't make a Mittstake. NEVER vote for Republicans.

Regina C.
Regina C.3 years ago

I lived for many years near the small town where this took place. There was a front-page spread touting the "historical event" in the local paper. They failed to mention that the miners were forced to attend under the threat of punishment, perhaps they didn't know at the time. I just emailed the editor and expressed my confidence that there would be a follow-up article, front-page of course, correcting the original piece. Tongue-in-cheek, yes, but I will pay close attention to what is in the paper in the coming weeks. One-newspaper towns are really hard on the truth, they have so much power, and they are usually Republican. It is up to us to keep them as balanced as possible.