The Kaine Mutiny

Is Gov. Timothy M. Kaine’s political future being destroyed by his support for Dominion Virginia Power’s plans for a $1.8 billion coal-fired plant in Wise County?

You may not read about it the mainstream state newspapers, but it’s all over the Democratic Blogosphere and even The Wall Street Journal. Fervor over greenhouse gases has reached such a hot temperature that Kaine’s erstwhile supporters are trashing him for backing the plant proposed by Dominion which has given him up to $230,000 in political contributions.

While backing the Virginia City Hybrid Energy Center, which would be among the top air polluters in the state when built, he is also pushing a plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the state 30 percent by 2025.

Is this Inconvenient Truth going to end Kaine’s political future which not long ago was so bright that he was talked about as a vice presidential nominee? Does this show that old-style politics in Virginia, that of cronyism and big corporate political funding, still rules? Some Democrats think so. Hence, “The Kaine Mutiny.”

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  1. Anonymous Avatar

    Dominion is seriously an evil organization.

    Kaine’s former Legislative Director, Bill Murray is now the Policy director for Dominion making something like $400,000 a year.

    We need a serious campaign finance/ethics bill to pass in the general assembly to get Dominion’s influence out of the political process in Virginia.

  2. Anonymous Avatar

    How about getting their influence out of all the other places too?

    At the request of Richmond’s school board chairman, Dominion’s President will soon be leading the effort — along with a group of mostly non-parents (this is Richmond, after all) – to find a new school superintendent.

    That’s a nice trick: To take responsibility for educating kids while you make long range plans to ruin their health.

  3. Larry Gross Avatar
    Larry Gross

    “DEQ previously issued a draft air permit for the Wise County plant for all regulated pollutants allowing annual emissions of 72 pounds of mercury a year, which was designed to comply with the now-voided Bush rule. At that rate, the Wise County plant would emit more mercury than the Mirant Potomac River Generating Station, built 60 years ago. After the court ruling, DEQ drafted a permit that appeared to drop the limit to 49.5 pounds a year. But because of language that DEQ officials internally referred to as the “out clause,” Dominion would be allowed to exceed the limit if the company determines for itself that the limit is technically unachievable.”

    “The law requires that this plant be state-of-the-art, but the limits set in the permit barely meet the standards of the Eisenhower era-and Dominion won’t even give guarantees about that,”

  4. Anonymous Avatar

    Thanks Larry,
    Another point — Dominion keeps saying in its PR that the plant would use “state-of’the-art” pollution equipment. Actually, the main component is a fluidized bed which is several decades old. The new plant’s version may have a few newer bells and whistles, but ther technology is hardly new.


  5. Anonymous Avatar

    Kaine did the same sort of crap when he was Mayor of Richmond. The Gottwalds and other corporates told him to install their flunky Jamison as City Manager despite citizen protest.

    Unfortunately, Kaine has a nice family and smile and the mainstream media markets him well.

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