Click on this for printable version: Voters Guide Primary 2016 Governor
Voters Guide WV Governor May 10, 2016 Primary Election
This candidate information is brought to you by the League of Women Voters of West Virginia as a public service. Candidate responses are printed exactly as received, including spelling, grammar and content. Candidates’ responses were limited to 60 words.
Candidates for WV Governor
Democratic Candidates for WV Governor
Candidate: Booth Goodwin
County of Residence: Kanawha
Booth Goodwin was the U.S. Attorney for the past 5 years, and a federal prosecutor for 10 years before that. Booth grew up in Ripley and is married to Amy Goodwin, a Wheeling native. Booth and Amy have two sons, Joe and Sam. Booth has a degree in Economics from WVU and his law degree from Washington & Lee University
- What would you do as governor to address our state’s epidemic of drug abuse? We must continue to address the supply side of illicit drugs. Drug dealers who peddle their poison in our communities must be held accountable. I did that as U.S. Attorney. We must get help for individuals addicted to drugs. Drug abuse is a public health crisis. We need plentiful drug treatment available where and when people require it.
- Considering that many counties in West Virginia cannot fill teaching positions with qualified teachers, what would you do to attract qualified teachers to West Virginia?First, we must show teachers respect. Second, we must pay good salaries and fully fund benefits. Third, we must empower teachers and give them the freedom to make school a place where curiosity and creativity are valued.
- What measures would you favor that increase state revenue and/or cut specific programs to resolve the state’s continuing budget shortfalls?
We will rewrite the tax code to make it predictable and consistent with economic reality. We must pay our bills. I will comb through every line of the budget and reevaluate our spending priorities. Fixing PEIA is my first priority. Consultants and studies are not my priorities. I will cut spending where we can and raise revenue where we must.
Candidate: Jim Justice
County of Residence: Greenbrier
Jim Justice is the owner of The Greenbrier and runs 83 different companies. Jim has created jobs in coal, agriculture, medicine, and tourism. He coaches boys and girls basketball at Greenbrier East High School. Jim earned his undergraduate degree and a masters in business administration from Marshall. He and his wife Cathy, have two adult children, Jay and Jill.
- What would you do as governor to address our state’s epidemic of drug abuse? When people are hopeless and can’t work, they turn to drugs. Creating more opportunities for people to work is the first step to stopping the drug epidemic. I will crack down on drug dealers who come into our state and poison our people. We need to provide more treatment options for the folks suffering from addiction.
- Considering that many counties in West Virginia cannot fill teaching positions with qualified teachers, what would you do to attract qualified teachers to West Virginia?I trust our teachers; and I will get the politicians out of their way. We cannot cut our way to better schools; we need to grow the pie by creating new jobs. I want West Virginia to be an education powerhouse so we can attract the best teachers. We must pay our teachers what they’re worth.
- What measures would you favor that increase state revenue and/or cut specific programs to resolve the state’s continuing budget shortfalls? The lack of jobs is the cause of our budget crisis. The politicians are failing because they have no clue how to market our state or create jobs. I’ve created thousands of jobs in the coal business, agriculture, medicine, and tourism. More jobs will solve the financial mess created by the politicians. We should not be raising taxes on people.
Candidate: Jeff Kessler
County of Residence: Marshall
Born in 1955; graduate of Bishop Donahue High School (1974); West Liberty University (1977 BA
Economics/Political Science); WVU College of Law (1981 JD)
Attorney; former City Solicitor, Municipal Court Judge and Assistant Prosecuting Attorney; WV State
Senate 1997-2016; President of the Senate/Lt. Governor 2011-2014. Hometown: Glen Dale. Spouse:
Gretchen. Five children ages 2-26. Attends St. Jude Church.
- What would you do as governor to address our state’s epidemic of drug abuse? The substance abuse epidemic is an equal opportunity destroyer which touches ALL socio-economic and geographic areas. There is a lack of adequate drug treatment and recovery facilities for those who want and need treatment. I will dedicate $10-15 million of additional annual funding from sin taxes to ensure every person in every county has access to get clean and productive.
- Considering that many counties in West Virginia cannot fill teaching positions with qualified teachers, what would you do to attract qualified teachers to West Virginia?In order for WV to attract and retain qualified teachers, we must make a commitment to improve teacher pay to our regional average. It wastes resources to educate our teachers and then have them leave to surrounding states due to better compensation. We should also provide student loan forgiveness programs for underserved subject and geographic areas.
- What measures would you favor that increase state revenue and/or cut specific programs to resolve the state’s continuing budget shortfalls? I will support additional sin taxes on tobacco and alcohol together with closing corporate tax loopholes on products shipped out of state to raise revenue. You can’t cut your way to prosperity. It takes money to fund education, fix crumbling roads and improve broadband access. Our path forward requires an investment in our People and Infrastructure.
Republican Candidate for WV Governor
Candidate: Bill Cole
County of Residence:
Candidate did not reply.