A story in Politico highlights efforts by Republican members of Kentucky’s federal delegation to save a local uranium enrichment plant, including deficit hawk U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., who has been pushing for more energy spending.
For the past year, Paul has been pressuring the Obama administration to extend a new contract with Gaseous Diffusion Plant. The company is located in Paducah and could potentially close in May.
Paul has tried various tactics to get the Department of Energy’s attention, including procedural blocks of the president’s nominees.
So along with fellow GOP lawmakers from Kentucky—Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and Rep. Ed Whitfield—Paul has spent much of the past year pressuring the Obama administration to extend new uranium re-enrichment contracts to help keep the plant afloat.
Paul’s tactics have included blocking nominations of five Energy Department appointees, one of whom remains in limbo.
Paul has plenty of company—even among other self-avowed deficit hawks—in coming to the rescue of constituents in need of federal largesse.
The same issue arises when lawmakers champion home-state energy industries such as wind, natural gas, biofuels or nuclear—even while denouncing pork for other industries.