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Last updated: July 02. 2014 1:31AM - 1087 Views
By Ron Gregory ronjgregory@gmail.com



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First of all, let me reiterate something I have said and written before: I think the vast majority of Mingo Countians are among the finest folks on earth. They are honest, sincere, dedicated and loyal. If you look in a dictionary for the definition of “southern hospitality,” a Mingo County picture has to be with the text.


I adore the Mingo Democratic Women (I adore ALL women, but let’s forget that for a moment). I think they are fabulous and do a fantastic job. I love being invited to their events and, even more, like being with them.


Still, I am required to be observant and tell the truth. So, let me just mention that Sheriff James M. Smith drove a county vehicle to Saturday’s Democratic Women picnic at Kermit. While he might argue that he is on call 24 hours a day, I also noted that his wife accompanied him and rode in the county vehicle. There is no way that is proper. I will not go into all the details as to why, but I will say it is a practice that should immediately be halted. I have also been told county-licensed vehicles have been at other partisan events in other Southern counties. The practice should stop.


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This week, after deliberate consideration concerning world events, national concerns and the state of the State of West Virginia, I am endorsing Natalie Tennant for the United States senate seat being vacated by Jay Rockefeller of New York.


In answer to your obvious questions: yes, I am a Moore Republican; and yes, I have supported either the greatest governor who ever lived, Arch A. Moore, Jr. or his daughter, Shelley Moore Capito, in every election since 1968, when I turned 17.


But matters of grave importance are at stake in 2014. I have taken into consideration that Tennant is likely the most ineffective secretary of state in a lifetime of memories. I have no idea what she thinks about Iraq and doubt that she does. I know Nancy Pelosi is helping her raise money. I have even considered the letter written by her legal counsel acknowledging that a Mingo County candidate broke the law by not paying his full filing fee by the deadline but adding that the requirement could be waived by the county clerk


Here’s what it comes down to though: Tennant has never stolen MY red velvet cake. Technically, I suppose it could be argued that Capito hasn’t either but that’s not how I see it. Everyone knows I love red velvet cake, especially Harts Creek red velvet cake. So, when one was put up for auction at a Lincoln County Republican dinner, everyone assumed I would be the high bidder and get it. They assumed wrong.


Capito viciously and deliberately outbid me for MY cake. She ran the price up to insurmountable heights. It still stings, months later. Someone said she joyfully shouted, “Let HIM eat cake!” as her winning bid was announced.


So, giving great weight to the issue of greatest concern, I will vote for Tennant and urge readers to do the same. Think of MY red velvet cake as you enter the polling booth.


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Word from the statehouse is that Lincoln County’s chief election officer, Christy Scaggs, is joining the staff of Secretary Tennant.


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One rumor had it that the expected absence of a legislative staffer is the reason no interims are being held in July. Allegedly, June surgery would prevent her attendance. But the staffer answered her statehouse phone Friday, just days after the alleged surgery. She said she had “no idea” why interims were not scheduled in July.


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Perhaps Democrats can mail more letters at taxpayer expense this month saying why the sessions are being canceled. That would be “constituent information,” wouldn’t it?


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Temporary grants, like the one that kept a deputy stationed fulltime at Sherman High, always remain proof that an old axiom is true: never give the public any service you will have to eventually take away. Everyone in Boone agrees the program is fantastic and the officer has done a great job. But the grant that paid him is expiring, so he will be back on regular road patrol unless something changes dramatically.


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State senators Art Kirkendoll and Ron Stollings were in high gear at Saturday’s Mingo picnic. While both spoke of their own legislative service, they admonished the crowd about the necessity of re-electing Democrat Congressman Nick Joe Rahall. I agree that the Southern coalfields cannot stand to lose Rahall’s clout and seniority.


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Your comments, story ideas, rumors and visits to my office in county-licensed vehicles are always welcome. Be sure to bring your spouse with you. Use the email listed or call 304-533-5185.


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