Jeff Anderson started picking a fight on mining with his Eighth District DFL opponents. Now he’s ripping Rick Nolan for not being serious about mining:

In a hastily called news conference to counter Nolan’s, Anderson said he would support the Republican-sponsored House legislation and that he supports incumbent Republican Rep. Chip Cravaack’s amendment that would extend the new rules to projects already in the works, such as the proposed PolyMet copper mine near Hoyt Lakes.

Anderson blasted the Nolan plan as wasteful federal spending that would create no immediate mining jobs, and he challenged Nolan to support immediate regulation reduction, such as changing the state’s longstanding sulfate standard for wild rice lakes and rivers. That standard currently is being upheld by the Environmental Protection Agency under the federal Clean Water Act. Sulfate often is a byproduct of mining. Anderson said the standard threatens several taconite and copper mining projects if not changed.

“While I support the idea of doing more research into evolving mining technologies, the people seeking jobs in this district cannot feed their families with studies,” Anderson said. “They need jobs. They need good, livable-wages jobs.”

Nolan’s plan isn’t a serious proposal. It’s a PR stunt and a pork project straight from Jim Oberstar’s playbook. Anderson is right. Nolan’s worship of mother earth prevents him from making a serious proposal on mining.

As for Tarryl, her response wasn’t a response:

In a statement, Tarryl Clark, the third candidate in the DFL race, said she has been consistent in her support for reduced mining industry regulations. Clark noted she is supported by the United Steelworkers of America on the Range.

“With the right advocate in Congress, we can build on our past successes and lead the world in 21st-century mining that creates good-paying jobs while remaining responsible stewards of our environment,” Clark said. “I have always supported an efficient and effective permitting process which guarantees protections for our workers, our water and our air. In Congress, I will continue to work on improving this process.”

In other words, Tarryl wouldn’t say whether she’s support Chip’s amendment to minimize wait time for mining investors. Considering her position with the BlueGreen Coalition, it isn’t likely she’s a friend of the mining industry.

Rick Nolan and Tarryl Clark aren’t friends of the mining industry. They’re political opportunists trying their best to hide their hostility towards the mining industry with pork projects and spin about the mining industry.

A spokesman for Cravaack’s campaign, Ben Golnik, said “Chip Cravaack will continue to be laser-focused on working to improve the economy and bring more jobs back to the 8th Congressional District. In his short time in Congress, Chip has worked to reduce excessive and duplicative red tape blocking economic development and job growth.”

Chip’s taken a proactive approach to getting the mining industry up and running. He’s pushed for streamlined permitting, which has occasionally taken over 10 years to get approved. Chip’s worked hard to get PolyMet’s EIS approved by the EPA.

Chip Cravaack is the miners’ best friend. That isn’t just my opinion. It’s the story told by Chip’s actions.

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