Hillary Clinton limped to the finish line against socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders in Tuesday’s Kentucky primary, as her March pledge to put coal miners “out of business” continues to haunt her in the long primary season.
Instead, Clinton beat Sanders by less than half a percentage point, with Sanders racking up big wins in eastern and western counties of the state.
Clinton and her husband spent the days leading up to Tuesday’s primary walking back her “out of business” comments. Clinton spoke “emotionally” about “coal miners’ sacrifices,” on Sunday and Monday, a sharp reversal from her callous pledge in March.
Bill, meanwhile, was interrupted by miners booing his Friday speech in Kentucky. Several coal families brought signs “telling him to go home.”
As the results came in, The Washington Post reported on how Clinton’s extreme coal comments hurt her in Kentucky:
Kentucky’s economy is more diverse than in West Virginia, where Clinton lost to Sanders by 16 percentage points last week. But Clinton didn’t help her standing in coal country when, in trying to describe her plans to help retool the economy, she said she planned “to put a lot of coal companies and a lot of coal miners out of business.” Sanders dominated in coal country in the eastern part of the state.
Despite her efforts to whitewash prior comments, Clinton has very clearly aligned her position on coal with the radical Environmentalist Left. Groups like the Sierra Club have lauded Clinton’s “strong environmental record,” as they keep track of cancelled coal plants “like trophies on a wall.”
As extreme environmentalists continue to line up behind Clinton in the months to come, voters are not likely to forget Clinton’s radical agenda on energy.