— *** Newspaper Endorsement Week 2014 ***—
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — West Virginia is in danger. Our country is in danger.
Citizens of this state following the U.S. Senate race between Secretary of State Natalie Tennant and Rep. Shelley Capito, R-W.Va., know the numbers. As of Aug. 30, Election Projection placed Capito 17 points ahead of Tennant. At almost any poll you look at, Capito is projected to win. And that’s not a good thing.
The Daily Athenaeum’s Editorial Board fully endorses Tennant. She has demonstrated herself to be the most energized and excited person to work for West Virginia.
When Tennant speaks of the election, she reminds voters the race is not about finding the first woman, but finding the best woman for West Virginia. This wouldn’t be the first time Tennant has broken new ground because of her gender.
In 1990, she was chosen as the first female Mountaineer Mascot for West Virginia University. She accepted this role with huge enthusiasm. There were times during her tenure, especially during the beginning, where she received opposition from misogynistic fans.
During her first home football game, a man walked up to a then 22-year-old Tennant and flipped her off. She thanked him for his support and he told her to go home.
“I am home,” Tennant said.
“You have no right to be here.”
When she speaks of this happening, tears wait on reserve. Her deep reverence for WVU tells us she will do what it takes in Washington.
When she speaks of same-sex marriage and gender equity, a serious tone washes across her face. She recognizes the importance of human rights and has acted on this. Tennant said her office in Charleston, W.Va., was the first to implement ENDHA, West Virginia’s version of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act.
Instead of telling voters why she is the best choice, Capito seems preoccupied with scaring voters from choosing Tennant by associating her with President Barack Obama. This is nothing more than political pandering and an attempt at capitalizing on Obama’s poor approval ratings.
Tennant devoted considerable time to sit down with The DA’s Editorial Board. However, we are thankful that Capito did speak with our staff for a few moments before an engagement at the Erickson Alumni Center Thursday night.
But it speaks volumes to us that Tennant prioritized our student newspaper and Capito did not.
In addition, Capito has declined many other opportunities to debate her opponent. She said that one debate was enough, but it is not.
For someone who supposedly puts West Virginia first, Capito seems to be resting easy on her lead.
Do not let Capito rest. If she is going to win, we should make her work for it, just like Tennant has worked for West Virginia.
We are proud to call Tennant a Mountaineer. If she goes to Washington, we can all sleep easy.
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