Coal Miners Complain They were Forced to Attend Romney Rally…and then Lost a Day’s Pay for not Working
Coal miners in Ohio say they had no choice but to attend a recent political rally for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, resulting in them losing a day’s pay.
When Romney made a campaign stop in Beallsville on August 14, Murray Energy decided to shut down operations at the Century Mine. Company officials also told employees that their presence at the rally was required, but that they would not be compensated.
Some miners later complained to a local radio station, telling talk show host David Blomquist that they worried about being fired if they skipped the Romney event.
“My whole point is that nobody should be pressured into attending anyone’s political event,” Blomquist told The Cleveland Plain Dealer. “If they shut the mine down, why should they lose a day’s pay? There are some guys that just want to go to work, feed their family and go home.”
Murray Energy Chief Financial Officer Rob Moore, said the mine had to be shut down for “safety and security” reasons during Romney’s visit. He also said federal election law prohibits employers from paying workers to attend political events. In a particularly bizarre twist of words, Moore told Blomquist that company managers “communicated to our workforce that the attendance at the Romney event was mandatory, but no one was forced to attend.”
To Learn More:
Coal Miners Lost Pay When Mitt Romney Visited Their Mine To Promote Coal Jobs (by Sabrina Eaton, Cleveland Plain Dealer)
Coal Mining (OpenSecrets.org)
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