Op-Eds

March 05, 2014

EPA's Power Plant Gamble -- a Risk We Can't Afford

Among the many things Government can do in the broad public interest, and surely among the first things it should do, is to secure an affordable and reliable supply of electricity for its people and its industries. The blessings of liberty may be secured by laws and custom, but the blessings of modern civilization are unthinkable without electricity, a truly indispensable commodity in the 21st century. Our country has enjoyed the advantage of low-cost electricity for so long that we may be … Continue Reading


February 05, 2014

Let's Get Ambitious. But Let's Fix Our Finances First | Politico

President Barack Obama, in his State of the Union address last week, spoke to the American people about ways he feels we can address income inequality and his plans to bypass Congress by issuing executive orders aimed at expanding opportunity. As a former governor, I understand his frustrations with Capitol Hill, which does not produce the best results for America. But as a senator, I am discouraged by the efforts President Obama has made to reach common-sense solutions where Democrats and … Continue Reading


February 05, 2014

Committing to Our Water | The Charleston Gazette

On Tuesday, I testified before a Senate Environment and Public Works Subcommittee hearing to discuss legislation that I drafted with Chairman Barbara Boxer to address the chemical spill that left more than 300,000 West Virginians without water and shut down thousands of businesses. After three weeks of hearing more questions than answers, I am reassured that this dire crisis has finally received the national attention it deserves. A prompt congressional hearing is appreciated, but it is just … Continue Reading


January 14, 2014

Protecting West Virginia Homeowners Against Flood Insurance Rates

For too many homeowners in West Virginia, flood insurance rates are rising faster than floodwaters in a rainstorm. But with new legislation that I am cosponsoring, Congress can pull them to financial safety and save them thousands of dollars on their premiums. These new extreme flood insurance rates are the unintended consequences of changes that Congress made to the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) in 2012 after natural disasters like Hurricane Katrina and Superstorm Sandy left it … Continue Reading


November 26, 2013

Thanksgiving Uniquely Reflects American Character

One of the eight historical paintings in the Rotunda of the U.S. Capitol depicts the departure of the Pilgrims for the New World in 1620. In the painting, the Pilgrims are kneeling in prayer, some with heads bowed, others looking to the heavens, all asking for Divine protection through what they knew would be a perilous voyage. The painting depicts one of the defining moments in the history of America. And its placement in the very heart of our Capitol underscores the uniqueness of our … Continue Reading


November 11, 2013

America is Blessed With ‘Such Men And Women’

Every time I hear a veteran's story of service and sacrifice, I think of the question famed author James Michener posed in his war novel, The Bridges at Toko-Ri: "Where do we find such men?" The answer, of course, is that we find these great patriots in every city, village and crossroads of America - and especially in West Virginia, a state with one of the country's highest per capita rates of military service members and veterans. And today, it's not just "such men" that we find to stand … Continue Reading


June 20, 2013

Celebrating West Virginia's 150th Birthday

This week, the state of West Virginia will celebrate the sesquicentennial of its birth - a brave and daring declaration of statehood that is unprecedented in American history. Born out of the fiery turmoil of the Civil War 150 years ago, West Virginia was founded by patriots who were willing to risk their lives and fortunes in a united pursuit of justice and freedom for all. To West Virginians, the names of Pierpont, Willey and Boreman are nearly as familiar as Washington, Jefferson and … Continue Reading

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