Front Porch Blog

Who Runs Appalachian Republicans?

Don Blankenship, CEO of Massey Energy.
Thats who.

Though he is not running for public office, Don Blankenship has become the dominant political figure this year in West Virginia.

The chief executive of Massey Energy, the fourth-largest coal producer in the country, has vowed to spend whatever it takes to wrestle control away from several Democratic incumbents in the West Virginia Legislature.

Blankenship is pouring millions of dollars to try and influence races in West Virginia – normally a Democratic/Labor stronghold – for the state GOP. Unike in 2005 when Blankenship beat Governor Manchin’s signature “bond sale issue,” Democrats are aggresively combating Blankenship, who is using a highly expensive, and highly sophisticated GOTV program for state legislative races – which are usually relatively low both in technology and expenses.

While it looks like coal barons might finally have perfected the permanent takeover of West Virginia by coal barons for coal barons, LazyHorse believes that the national picture looks much bleaker for coal this election season. Great stuff.




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