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Raese names campaign manager

By From staff and wire reports

Republican businessman John Raese has tapped a grassroots super PAC leader and tea party advocate to head his campaign.

Raese announced Monday he has hired Kearneysville resident Bob Adams, the Capitol Hill liaison for TheTeaParty.Net, as his new campaign manager.

Raese is challenging U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., in the November election. Manchin defeated Raese in the special 2010 election to fill late Sen. Robert Byrd's remaining term in the Senate.

Adams has worked for conservative candidates and organizations since the mid-1990s.

He worked in the public affairs office for the American Legislative Exchange Council during President George W. Bush's administration. Recently, Adams worked with Fox News political analyst Dick Morris to start a grassroots campaign aimed at defeating President Barack Obama's health care legislation.

"I am thrilled that someone of Bob's skills and character was available and willing to join my campaign," Raese said in a statement Monday. "His experience, dedication and determination are just what our campaign needs, and I am very much looking forward to working with him."

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Manchin on Tuesday announced a trio of Kanawha County leaders have agreed to serve as county co-chairmen of his re-election campaign.

County Commission President Kent Carper, Commissioner Dave Hardy and Sheriff Mike Rutherford, all Democrats, will work with Manchin's statewide campaign to coordinate projects in Kanawha County.

"It's always rewarding when good citizens come forward to help, and I am truly honored to have their support as we continue to put West Virginia first," Manchin said in a statement.

In the press release announcing the partnership, the three men said Manchin has shown a commitment to the state and its people.

"Joe Manchin put the state in the right direction as governor, and now he's doing the same thing for our country in Washington as our U.S. senator," Carper said. "That's why he needs to be re-elected."

"His heart and soul is West Virginia, and we've got to re-elect him so he can continue putting West Virginia first," Rutherford said.

* * *

Manchin also released his first television campaign ad this week.

Titled "Joe's America," the ad features Manchin talking about the importance of hard work, fairness and coming together in a bipartisan way to fix the nation's problems.

"In times of increased global unrest and economic insecurity, it's essential that we come together - as Democrats and Republicans, business and labor, Wall Street and Main Street - to put our country first and solve our problems instead of passing them on to the next generation," Manchin said in a press release announcing the ad.

The ad will be featured on local televisions stations and can be seen online at Manchin's campaign website.

* * *

Manchin and Raese will have their first debate of the campaign season in early October.

The Eastern Panhandle's Shepherd University will host the debate Oct. 2 in Reynolds Hall on the Shepherdstown campus.

The master of business administration program is arranging the debate. West Virginia Public Radio's Cecelia Mason will serve as the moderator. Area journalists will pose questions on such topics as health, energy, jobs, education and the environment.

The Shepherd University Foundation is handling inquiries about tickets for the debate at 304-876-5397.

Manchin, Raese and Mountain Party candidate Bob Henry Baber also are expected to debate Oct. 10 at West Virginia Northern Community College in Wheeling.

* * *

West Virginia Democrats are holding their main annual fundraiser just in time for the general election.

The party is rescheduling its Jefferson-Jackson Dinner for Oct. 27 at the Charleston Civic Center.

Democrats postponed the event in August as West Virginians recovered from storms that cause widespread power outages.

Former congressional leader and presidential candidate Dick Gephardt remains the dinner's keynote speaker. The Missouri Democrat served as House majority leader from 1989 until 1995, and then as minority leader until 2003.

The annual JJ Dinner is a key fundraiser for the state Democratic Party. Tickets are $75 per person or $1,000 for a table of 10.

Compiled from staff, wire reports


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