Archive for July, 2010

Candidates Must Be More Specific

Saturday, July 31st, 2010

A point well made by The Inter-Mountain (Elkins) in an editorial.

This is a most important and strange political season in the Mountain State.  Campaigns normally expand over a period of year – and more often than not much longer. 

Thus, there is adequate time for citizens to get a feel how candidates are likely to vote in Congress or the Legislature.  In 28 days the special primary will be over and then in 65 days we will have a new United States Senator.

West Virginians are keenly aware that incumbent Members of Congress are returned.  The victor on November 2nd is to serve two years – the likely hood is they will stay in the Senate for as long as desired.

People are not buying slogans this time around.  If I were counseling a candidate it would be state your exact position.  Time is too limited to do otherwise.  That along with the short campaign is the reason “Candidates Must Be More Specific.”

Political Tidbits…..

Friday, July 30th, 2010

Heading Home…..today starts the congressional recess for House Members…..both parties are loading up members with talking points, ideas, themes…..the loud town meetings of last summer…..will be replaced with active schedules.

GOP members were sent packing with a completed six week plan…..The House Republican Conference has prepared a 22-page how-to for members

Speaker Pelosi has told her members “nobody wants you to go out there and talk about legislation; they want to talk about the impact it has on them”…..Pelosi reminded her flock….former Speaker Tip O’Neill said, “All politics is local”…..her approach is “All politics is personal.”

John Raese is working like never before…..already in a campaign van traveling the state…..not missing a minute…..making telephone calls to Republican leaders…..taking no chances in the near term primary…..he sees opportunity based on a recent national polls…..plus Republicans are looking strong in 2010.

Mac Warner attended a Charleston funeral and gave the Gazette an interview?

WV Center-Right Coalition continues a heavy summer schedule…..Coalition leader John Overington has called the group for an August 9th meeting in Charleston.

Many 2010 congressional battles are being waged in Clinton country…..a majority of the top 2010 races are in districts and states where Obama struggled in the Democratic primary fight two years ago.

Want to rediscover the making of America on August 14th…..a seminar at Fairmont State University sponsored by The Informed Electorate Foundation of WV is set……304.291.0193.

Potential GOP candidates for Governor are in the news…..in a Gazette interview Mark Sorsaia says he is putting his plans on a fast-track preparing for a possible special election if Governor Manchin goes to Washington…..The State Journal mentions former Ag Commissioner candidate Mike Teets and SOS Betty Ireland.

Back to the Senate campaign…..John Raese will take his message to Mason County on Tuesday…..Mason county friends tell phillipsbillboard…..a full day is planned.

BEFORE WE LEAVE WASHIGTON…..Rep. Mike Pence (R-Ind.) told his GOP colleagues….. “Since taking office, President Obama has spent more than $6.1 trillion in 18 months.  At $333 billion per month, that is more than twice the amount spent during the first two years of the George W. Bush administration”.

Democrats View of Obama

Wednesday, July 28th, 2010

Regardless of where you turn someone is offering an opinion about President Obama, his policies and approach to government.  Two nationally known Democrat pollsters who have worked for President Jimmy Carter and President Bill Clinton penned an op-ed in The Wall Street Journal.  It is not what you would expect.

Governor Romney Writes Another Detailed Piece On New START Treaty

Monday, July 26th, 2010

Since Governor Romney’s last piece appeared in The Washington Post he has written another article appearing in NATIONAL REVIEW.  It takes a look at some of the recent arguments supporters of the New START treaty have made since his initial op-ed in The Washington Post.

White House Communications in the Obama Era

Monday, July 26th, 2010

Everyone knows the President can reach anyone at anytime.  Well here is a fun read about how effective President Obama is at communications.

Community Development

Sunday, July 25th, 2010

Community development is a growing need throughout the Mountain State.  Towns are looking for ways revitalize, fill empty property and create jobs.  For some time I thought one way our political leaders and decision makers could assist was by moving appropriate agencies of state government out of Charleston. 

This is not a popular subject in the state capitol.  There have been court cases to slow down or stop government entities from making the move.  Most likely the state’s constitution will need to be changed.  Whatever it takes the campaign should start.

The subject is not new as Senator Edwin Bowman (D-Hancock) took up the subject in 1997.  I am sure others have thought about it – and the heavy lifting involved. 

Delegate Bill Hartman (D-Randolph) after forming the House Rural Caucus called for lunch.  He was aware I had been the point person for rural development in the Federal government.  We discussed ideas how government could be of greater assistance to our small rural communities in West Virginia. 

Doing my reading today I found an article making the case to scatter the federal government beyond the Beltway.  This did not appear in a mid-western newspaper but in Washington, DC.  In fact, West Virginia is used as an example in the case to break up the federal government.

With all the public and private money now going to expand broadband in our State, making communications even easier, now may be the time to launch an effort to make whatever changes are required to permit government leaders and policymakers to aid those small communities and towns fighting so hard to survive in West Virginia.

Tidbits…from State GOP Meeting

Sunday, July 25th, 2010

It was a quite meeting…..despite a nasty race for state chairman which included paid consultants…..friends against friends…..new versus old…..but it may have been noisy in the backrooms……only the parliamentarian  Roger Hanshaw knows.

Mike Stuart who advanced an activist agenda…..soundly removed outgoing Chairman Doug McKinney from office.  Wonder if McKinney’s little white house…..opposite the state capitol…..will now be painted red?

New faces were seen at the state committee meeting…..along with those who have long served…..maybe Stuart’s first order of business should be a culture change.

Stuart lead a standing prolonged ovation for Doug and Sue McKinney…..they had worked hard…..contributed time and personal resources…..not everyone agreed with Chairman McKinney all the time….but a well deserved thank you …..shows unity is in the air.

Unless they had come and gone…..none of the GOP candidates for the U. S. House of Representatives were to be seen…..but there were Warners around every corner. At least one is seeking office…..Mac Warner wants to be a United States Senator…..in May he wanted to be a member of the House…..rumor had it Kris Warner wants to be the new ED of the State Party.

Senate candidate John Raese was the winner yesterday…..he backed Stuart hosting a morning breakfast.   A Rasmussen poll released Friday shows likely voters with Raese picking up 35% and Governor Manchin 51%. 

For a while it looked like Rick Snuffer a GOP worker from Southern WV…..was going to be a unity candidate…..he was nominated for State Chair.  Not needed unity seemed the order of the day…..but Republicans are normally quiet and reserved…..in public.

A lot of support for Governor Mitt Romney…..still exists…..the big question was will he run again.

In 2008 Republicans had some attractive statewide candidates…..the only one to show up Saturday was Mike Teets…..he nearly defeated 50 plus year Ag Commissioner Gus Douglass…..Teets is a strong candidate…..he worked the room…..creating talk if he would run again…..maybe even for different state office.

Marty Gearhart from Mercer County…..was impressive in his nomination speech for Stuart…..Republicans need him on a list for the 2012 election…..maybe statewide.

Finally…..the ugly came…..former WV Congressman Mike Staton…..offered a motion to close the meeting to only Republicans…..boy was that soundly defeated…..no one could believe the move…..particularly when it takes Democrat voters for Republicans to win…..in WV.

Underwood Interns continue as bright spot in the party…..prior to the Saturday they offered another GOP Summit…..maybe that set the tone for the day.  Shane Wilson deserves applause for this vision.

After the hard fought First Congressional District race in May…..former Senator Sarah Minear and Cindy Hall were visible at the meeting…..don’t ever count Minear out…..she has thought about a statewide race before…..of course Mac Warner who also lost that race was around the corner.

The politically astute wife (Sue) of outgoing Chair Doug McKinney…..moved  herself to the podium at the meetings end…..saying they would still be around…..and to remember what this is all about…..it is electing Republicans.

Stuart is off to a good start…..Democrats will find him an aggressive opponent…..Republicans will find him hard working.

Mitt Romney Writes About New-START Treaty

Saturday, July 24th, 2010

An important foreign policy issue is now under discussion.  Governor Mitt Romney has written an Op-Ed which appeared in The Washington Post.  This is being shared for those who may not have seen his piece on President Obama’s New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New-START) with Russia.

Capito’s Real News

Wednesday, July 21st, 2010

U. S. Rep. Shelley Moore Capito told Hoppy Kercheaval on MetroNews Talkline she will forgo a race for the U. S. Senate to replace the late Senator Byrd.  In the last few days the signs pointed to this decision. 

However, the real news during the interview was when Capito said “the U. S. Senate is a place I would like to be someday.” 

Byrd’s term, had he lived, would have come up in 2012. 

 If you get a chance listen to her interview it was outstanding.   Capito was sincere, honest and thoughtful.  This is the example she has set representing West Virginia’s second congressional district and how she would conduct herself as a United States Senator.

Republicans Are Ready for Capito

Monday, July 19th, 2010

WV Republicans in the Legislature have scored a victory for Rep. Shelley Moore Capito.  The new law provides an opportunity for Capito to run for the Senate seat and for re-election to her House seat if she wants.

Now we know the real hold up in passing the legislation Governor Manchin proposed.

National Review reported Friday Rep. Capito was spending the weekend working on plans for a run if the opportunity presented itself.  The opportunity is here.  She has until Friday to announce her intentions.  Republican sources said today Capito is on the edge of making the race.

It has always been thought there was a close relationship between the Manchin and Moore families.  Capito’s father former Governor Moore represented West Virginia’s first congressional district for years in which the Manchin family resided.  It has been said there would never be a race between Moore Capito and a Manchin. 

That idea was put aside last week when Capito said “that is a myth.”

Should this race materialize it will make political history.  Capito has been a strong voice for West Virginia in Congress and Governor Manchin has brought positive attention to the State.

It appears GOP candidates have a real opportunity in both the First and Third congressional districts.  Electing Capito to the U. S. Senate and two Republicans to the U. S. House of Representatives would be real West Virginia political history. 

Manchin says he will announce his intentions Tuesday morning at 10 AM.

Republicans are on the edge of their seats waiting for word from Capito.