Editorial - Sue Thorn for Congress
Published: Thursday, November 1, 2012
Updated: Thursday, November 1, 2012 10:11
Two years ago, Rep. David McKinley became the first Republican to represent West Virginia’s first congressional district in the United States House of Representatives since 1969 after he narrowly defeated Democrat Mike Oliverio by less than 1,400 votes.
This year, McKinley is up for re-election, and many pundits have characterized his race as a David versus Goliath battle.
A quick look at his challenger’s bank account and it’s easy to see why many have dismissed her candidacy. So far, Rep. McKinley has spent almost 10 times more on his campaign than Democratic candidate Sue Thorn has spent. Despite this, it would be a grave mistake not to take Thorn’s candidacy seriously.
Unlike Rep. McKinley, who has received tens of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions from the extractive industry, Thorn’s campaign is entirely grassroots. For this reason, we can count on Sue Thorn to represent the best interests of our district, even when those don’t mesh with the interests of the state’s coal and gas companies. For this reason, The Daily Athenaeum endorses Sue Thorn for West Virginia’s first congressional district’s seat in the House.
Thorn is not a career politician. In fact, this is her first political race. Previously, she has worked as a community organizer, and it wasn’t until the communities she worked with pushed her to pursue this House seat that Thorn announced her candidacy.
We are confident Thorn would best represent West Virginia’s middle class, because she is a part of that middle class.
Moreover, Thorn understands the importance of expanding health care coverage to those who lack it and investing in higher education. We trust that as a member of Congress, she will work to get things done for her district by bringing people together and bridging their differences, just as she has done as a community organizer.
It’s a campaign cliché for politicians to beg for your vote, because they are real people, facing the same everyday struggles as their constituents. This is one of the rare cases when this claim can rightfully be made by a candidate.
In these trying times, our country needs the fresh, real-world independence that Sue Thorn will bring along to Washington, D.C.