It’s hard to imagine that Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling (R) and Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli (R), fierce rivals for their party’s nomination in next year’s race for governor, take lots of weekend road trips together.

Carved coal donkey and elephant figurines, which U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) gave to Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) in December at the top-secret Santa senators party on the Hill. (U.S. Senate Photographic Studio)

The event also will feature speeches by Gov. Robert F. McDonnell (R) and Rep. Morgan Griffith (R).

“Coal jobs in Virginia are under regulatory assault from bureaucrats in Washington, D.C.,” Audrey Jackson, state director of Americans for Prosperity – Virginia, said in a prepared statement. “This rally is our opportunity to stand up for our communities, our families and our jobs. ... Hardworking Virginians are tired of watching coal jobs disappear to policies based on radical ideology.”

Jackson’s group is hosting the rally with the Federation for American Coal, Energy and Security.

The rally comes at a time when the Environmental Protection Agency has begun limiting greenhouse gas emissions from new power plants. In a series of television ads that started running in May in the battleground states of Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia, two environmental groups contend that tougher environmental standards will produce jobs as well as clean air.

The National Wildlife Federation Action Fund and Earthjustice launched the ads, which cited a U.S. Department of Labor study concluding that transforming to a greener economy had created more than 3 million jobs.

The coal industry says the limits will be job killers, effectively banning construction of conventional coal-fired plants in the United States.