Sitting Senator John "Jay" Rockefeller IV is retiring, so this seat is going to be hotly contested by both Democrats and Republicans. However, it is safe as far as I can tell. Typically speaking West Virginia runs Democratic when dealing with the House and Senate (however Liberal minded Republicans can make a go of it).
Currently on the ticket are Republicans Larry Eugene Butcher, Shelley Moore Capito, and Matthew Dodrill.
Larry Eugene Butcher: As we head into primary season Mr. Butcher has nothing. I haven't even found a candidate site for the man from Washington in Wood Country. As of this time, I have learned that Mr. Butcher lost the primary for the 2000 Gubernatorial election. In that election he had a war chest just shy of 1000 USD that he fronted himself. This appears to be a dark horse candidate in the primary.
Matthew Dodrill: Now Mr. Dodrill has his site up and running, and it seems to hold a wealth of information on the man. He is anti-"Obamacare", but not a free market kind of guy either. He actually wants to set the prices of what a doctor of hospital charges you for medications. Basically, limit their profit. He is against "Gun Free Zones" as he sees the notion as painting the innocent with targets for people who will simply ignore the law anyway. Education, he feels parents, schools, and states need to choose. Education does not seem to be the most important thing in these parts, so we can continue to have a bunch of undereducated people running around? As for regulations, he wants balanced, enough that the citizens are protected, but not enough to prevent businesses from moving in. He is not shoved up the coal industries backside either, he claims he wants to invest in clean energy and renewable resources. He pulls the typical financial row for the GOP, except he wants a tax on what you by. Now, I will do more research on this type of taxing system before I comment. The only thing I can solidly support from his is the destruction of the Patriot Act. I can dig that.
Shelly Moore Capito: Ms. Capito is currently one of our Representatives, serving the 2nd District of the Mountain State. She opposes any cuts or alterations to Social Security, IE the PPACA cuts to Medicare, and the Bush plan to privatize the program. However this only extends to people 55 years or older, as she claims rightly that everyone pays into it, but she also tells a lie when she says that it is currently a burden to the government. But it is only a half truth, as previously discussed on this blog, the government currently owes social security as part of the national debt. She is pushing for lower taxes, to promote spending and the creation of more jobs. She contends that all students in WV should have the opportunity to get a college degree, while pushing for increases in Pell Grants, and trying to stop interest on student loans from doubling. She is also anti-"Obamacare", she supports the border fence, while she supports investment in infrastructure, but not the EPA and its "Anti-Coal" moves.
On the Democratic side we have David Wamsley, Natalie Tennant, and Dennis Melton.
Natalie Tennant: Ms Tennant is currently the Secretary of State here in the Mountain State. Taking from this, she feels there is too much corruption and greed in politics, and she is frustrated by how hard Washington is making it for West Virginians to start and operate a business here. She opposes any cuts or alterations to Social Security, and while she does not oppose the PPACA, she wants to see alterations made to fix it, so it works for West Virginians. She pushes for fewer government mandated tests on teachers and students, and wants to reward teachers that encourage innovation and creativity in the classroom. But here is where she falls apart on education, she seems like the GOP candidates to feel that West Virginians know what is best for their children when it comes to education, but she does want America to return to the top tiers of achievement in this aspect. Pro-second amendment, she talks about how she uses her S&W pistol to teach her daughter to shoot, while she is against any type of registry. She is anti-EPA, as she says it is trying to destroy the coal industry (as if greed isn't doing that already). So she will fight to secure coal's future in the world, along with attempting to bring in renewable resources, and alternative energy sources to the state. She also wants to bring in new modern technology to the state.
Dennis Melton: The dark horse on the Democratic ticket. I was unable to find any information on this candidates views.
David Wamsley: This man, has some... I will say interesting ideals. First he is pushing for "Free National Healthcare". Basically a .50 cent fee on all 100$ on securities transaction, including short sales, stock sales, credit defaults, currency speculation, and so on. While he does not appear to be pro or anti-gun control, he shares a common belief as I do. He seems to feel that many deaths via guns are a result of mental illness, and addiction. I contend other socioeconomic factors come into play, but alright. And via the implementation of his Healthcare Act, many deaths would be prevented. He also supports background checks. Also a side effect of his Healthcare act is a reduced cost, which can then enable employers to hire more people. He also pushes for the use of US Resources to repair, upgrade, our replace the current infrastructure. He seeks to see rewards for higher education, not a mountain of debt. He sees that we need highly educated people to take the lead, even if it is nothing more than a "trade skill". He also wants to see an end to long term unemployment, but also doubling the tax incentives for paying people over ten dollars an hour.
As of this time you have the 6 current candidates for the US Senate in West Virginia. If I was voting as of this moment, I would go with Mr. Wamsley first, Ms. Tennant second. The only major difference is Mr. Wamsley seems more concerned nationwide, while Ms. Tennant seems preoccupied with just this state. Also, Mr. Wamsley seems to be speaking and saying the things I would, and since all elections are a popularity contest, I will vote for the person I like the most. And the people we like the most are the ones who seem to agree with us most often.