January 19, 2012

Senator Manchin Speaks to Senior Mons; Shuffles for Activity Day | WBOY

MORGANTOWN - Senator Joe Manchin has been traveling the state for two weeks on his 'Standing Up for Common Sense' tour.

As it winds down, he made a visit to the Senior Monongalians in Morgantown.

"Basically, we're just talking about the concerns that West Virginians have. I tell them about the problems were facing in Washington. We're trying to bring people together to make common sense decisions rather than just patching things right now," explained Senator Manchin.

He discussed the financial condition of the country, governmental waste and efficiency, and the need to make and manufacture goods in America.

"They give me a little bit of direction, and I get a feeling from where they're thinking, where they're going. I go to Washington, talk to my colleagues and say, 'I've been all around my state and I can tell you what I'm hearing,'" added Senator Manchin.

In addition to talking politics, the Senior Mons made sure the senator wouldn't miss out on West Virginia Physical Activity Day.

The 'Senior Shufflers' taught Manchin how to do the 'Cupid Shuffle.'

Another member of the Senior Mons had a special gift to send with the senator as he travels back to Washington.

Veteran Paul Collins creates artwork out of scrap metal he collected in his time working at the coal mines.

"These are bits that drills the roof bolts in the mines. They drill the hole up into the roof to put the roof bolts in and these just wore out and they go to change them and just throw them down," explained Collins of how the pieces ended up in the mines.

He presented Senator Manchin with two pieces.

One was Collins' interpretation of Abraham Lincoln, and the other unites two things that have been staples in West Virginia history: figures of military members made from metal used by coal miners.

"This one right here I made when they started that old war over there. This is a symbol of the troops coming home," Collins said.

Senator Manchin promised Collins that the piece of the soldiers would be displayed at his Morgantown office and the piece representing Lincoln is headed back to Washington.

By:  Kelly Rippin