Donna Hope of Mount Storm shakes hands with Gov. Joe Manchin at the Mineral County Democrat Headquarters in Keyser on Friday afternoon.

KEYSER — Telling Mineral Countians gathered at Democrat headquarters in Keyser Friday that he “wants the people to know the truth of what’s going on,” Gov. Joe Manchin spoke about the many things West Virginia has accomplished over the past 20 months of his administration.

“The success we’ve had in the last 20 months is because we’ve had quality people working together,” he told the crowd of Democrats and Republicans alike who poured into the former Stray Cat Cafe Friday afternoon.

“We haven’t blamed anybody, we haven’t bad-mouthed anybody ... we’ve worked together,” he said.

Despite successes that have included an increase in school clothing vouchers, a reduction in the state food tax, placement of a cap on the gasoline tax and reform in the areas of workers’ compensation and health insurance, Manchin said there is much work left to be done.

“The biggest challenge we have is how to get good-paying jobs in West Virginia,” he said, noting that the state needs to provide better infrastructure in order to entice those jobs to locate here.

“My main goal is to spend every spare dollar we have in getting people better infrastructure,” he said, noting that infrastructure not only refers to water and sewer, but also to high-speed Internet and modern technology.

“But you can’t have success in these areas without working together,” he said. “We need a strong leadership from the majority party of Democrats.”

Manchin therefore urged the crowd to vote their Democratic candidates into office so the Mountain State can continue to move forward.

“There is no way we can continue to be successful unless you give us a good team,” he said. “It is a team effort from the top, on the federal level, to the bottom.”

Among the Democratic candidates introduced by the governor were A. Craig Rotruck of Kingwood, running for the 14th Senatorial District; Jerry Detrick of Short Gap, running for the 49th Delegate District; Royce Saville of Romney, running for the 50th Delegate District; Henry Kopple of Petersburg, running for the 49th Delegate District; Marq Rice of Keyser, running for Mineral County clerk; and Cindy Pyles, running for re-election as Mineral County commissioner.

Mike Callohan, running against Shelley Moore Capito for U.S. Congress, was also present.

County Commissioner Wayne Spiggle praised Manchin for his shared vision for West Virginia.

“You have a God-given talent to let others see your vision,” he said. “We know you care about the thousands of West Virginians who are struggling to raise a family.

“That is why we Mineral Countians love you so much.”

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