House Judiciary Chairman Tim Miley says he has more than enough support to win the race for Speaker of the House of Delegates.
Miley estimates he has 35 of the House’s 54 Democrat members in his corner, which could very well be true given the deluge of lawmakers putting out press releases announcing their support for the Harrison delegate.
As you can read in today’s paper, 14 lawmakers announced they would vote for Miley. That group includes House Majority Whip Mike Caputo, D-Marion, Speaker Pro Tempore Randy Swartzmiller, D-Hancock, and House Judiciary Vice Chairman Tim Manchin, D-Marion.
UPDATE (2:22 p.m.) Apparently I missed a few. House Majority Leader Brent Boggs, D-Braxton, along with delegates Don Perdue, D-Wayne, and Ronnie Jones, D-Hancock, also are endorsing Miley. This afternoon, Kanawha delegates Meshea Poore, Nancy Guthrie and Danny Wells said they would vote for him as well.
Add to that the so-called “We Are West Virginia” coalition, a group of six delegates from the central part of the state who announced their support for Miley on Wednesday. This morning, delegates Brady Paxton, D-Putnam, and Dave Pethtel, D-Wetzel, put out press releases supporting a Miley speakership.
That brings the count to
22 28. Miley’s vote for himself brings that number to 23 29. He only needs 28 votes to win.
But where are the remaining
12 six supporters? They probably can be found on the state AFL-CIO’s membership rolls. The union group, along with the West Virginia Education Association, also announced its support for Miley on Wednesday.
Given the large number of Democrats who also claim membership in the United Mine Workers, the American Federation of Teachers and the WVEA, that probably puts Miley over the top.
House Finance Chairman Harry Keith White, D-Mingo, isn’t ready to throw in the towel, however. He said some of Miley’s purported supporters might not be telling the truth.
“We’ve still got people calling us…’We’ve had to tell labor we’re for them, but in a secret ballot you’ll get our vote.’ We’ll see what happens,” White said. “It ain’t over ’til it’s over.”
In other news:
- The United States Postal Service will release a special stamp to commemorate West Virginia’s 150th birthday.
- The State Election Commission is set to review the expansion of the Supreme Court public campaign financing program.
- Business editor Jared Hunt says Sen. Joe Manchin is getting cautious with his finances in an effort to avoid violating the Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act.
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