Posted on August 8, 2014 at 11:17 PM
FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) -- A trade group representing Kentucky's coal industry is defended Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell after a published report that his wife is a board member of an organization that has spent $50 million to close coal-fired power plants.
Yahoo! News reported Friday that Elaine Chao sits on the board of Bloomberg Philanthropies. Former New York Mayor and media mogul Michael Bloomberg founded the charity.
The Kentucky Coal Association says Bloomberg's contribution was made before Chao joined the board in April 2012.
The eastern Kentucky coalfields have lost 7,000 coal-related jobs since January 2012. That's an issue at the center of McConnell's re-election bid against Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes.
The Kentucky Coal Association says McConnell has done everything possible to protect the coal industry.