PARKERSBURG - U.S. Senate candidate John Raese Wednesday asked Gov. Joe Manchin to condemn another stimulus plan proposed by President Obama, who on Labor Day said another $50 billion is needed to bolster the economy and increase employment.
"I call on Joe Manchin to repudiate these harmful policies," Raese said in a statement released Wednesday. "They are hurting the citizens of our state and keeping businesses from hiring."
Manchin Wednesday said he doesn't agree with President Obama's proposal for another $50 billion for infrastructure.
"I have said from day one that we need to take West Virginia's philosophy of responsible government to Washington. The federal government must be accountable to the people which it serves, just like we have done in West Virginia over the past six years," the governor said.
"We must get back to the basics when it comes to job creation. The federal government must partner with the states and businesses to create more jobs. I don't believe that Obama's latest infrastructure plan is right for West Virginia. American families and the state of West Virginia live within a budget. The federal government should do the same. We must tighten our belts and make tough decisions at this time."
Obama followed George W. Bush into office in 2009 after the start of the worst recession and economic times since the Great Depression.
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and its $800 billion for infrastructure projects was adopted in 2009. About $1.4 billion has been allocated to West Virginia with about 25 percent going to education, followed by roads and transportation, broadband, the environment and energy.
But the first $800 billion stimulus program for infrastructure projects to lower unemployment has failed as joblessness across the country is around 10 percent, said Raese, who runs the family-owned Greer Industries in Morgantown. Unemployment in West Virginia is 8.5 percent. The first stimulus caused a deeper economic decline, Raese said.
"We do not need more government stimulus spending," Raese said. "We need to end the professional politicians' out-of-control spending spree, stop their tax increases and create jobs by eliminating the job-killing policies they have put in place."
The Manchin campaign released its first TV ad Wednesday evening.
"Washington is filled with people like John Raese who tear other people down," Manchin says in the ad.
Raese is running a negative campaign, said Sara Payne Scarbro, Manchin's campaign director.
"Something that he is an expert on," Scarbro said. "Joe Manchin is a fighter and he is not going to let his opponent drag this state down without a fight."
Also on Wednesday, Ken Hechler, who ran against Manchin in the special primary election, endorsed Jesse Johnson, the nominee from the Mountain Party for Senate. Hechler, a former congressman and secretary of state, ran on a platform primarily against the mountaintop mining method.
A fourth senatorial candidate is Jeff Becker of the Constitution Party, who got enough signatures on a petition to be placed on the special general election ballot on Nov. 2.