Good point. The monopoly providers are going to benefit either way; the captured ratepayers, on the other hand, are harmed when the state forces them to purchase electricity generated from more expensive, less efficient and less reliable sources.
For the poorest among us, it’s not a small matter. Electricity is a basic household necessity. It isn’t a goodie you treat your family to if you’ve managed the budget well that month. For that reason it consumes quite a big chunk of the after-tax income of poor families — a proportion that has grown steadily larger over the last decade and a half as politicians subjected ratepayers to renewable-energy mandates and made utilities bear (that is, pass through) the costs of increasingly burdensome regulations.
I posted this chart before, but it’s worth reposting here.
Here’s the story in North Carolina: