HAZARD, Ky. (WYMT) - Kentucky's junior senator says the coal industry may not survive four more years of President Obama in office.
During a recent taping of WYMT's "Issues and Answers: The Mountain Edition" program, Sen. Rand Paul (R - Ky.) accused the president of trying to "bankrupt the coal industry."
"Already (coal) competes with natural gas and is having trouble because natural gas is lower," Paul said. "The reason natural gas is cheaper than coal is because all the regulatory burdens placed on coal and that regulatory burden continues to increase."
Paul also said Obama has been unwilling to compromise with the GOP during recent budget negotiations.
"If I were president, what I would be doing is calling up people from the other party," Paul said. "He should be calling Republicans, inviting us to the White House and saying, 'What would it take to get this legislation passed'?"
In an interview on CBS This Morning on Monday, Paul took on another topic - the Affordable Care Act. He said the provision that prevents insurance companies from not accepting people with pre-existing conditions will not save money.
"When you mandate something, like if I say you have to have in vitro fertilization in your insurance or you have to have sex changes in your insurance, insurance becomes more expensive," the senator said. "So any mandate makes it more expensive."
Paul's new book Government Bullies hits shelves on Tuesday amid speculation he may be gearing up for a 2016 presidential run.
"I've said I wanted to be part of the national debate," Paul said. "I want to continue to participate because I want to continue to change the direction of the country."