Coal Miners Are Political Canaries

It’s been fascinating to watch the candidates campaign in the coal-rich regions of Appalachia, centered in West Virginia and eastern Kentucky, where there is no shortage of trouble. The number of coal miners, which has slid downhill since the mid-1980s, dropped like a rock in 2012, responding to weak global demand and cheap natural gas. John Deskins, the director of the Bureau of Business and Economic Research in West Virginia, estimates the state lost about 15,000 mining jobs in the past five years, with most of the cuts concentrated in six central counties.

In better times, this was solid Clinton country.

People instinctively know that Clinton will do SFA for anyone who can’t donate a few million to her bank account.