Raese has described Baber's philosophy as socialist.
Baber, however, said he believes in traditional West Virginia Democratic values.
"Anyone who remembers what a Democrat really is in West Virginia, that's what I am," he said. "I represent what Democrats used to be in West Virginia."
That includes support for universal health care, education, veterans' health care, opposition to the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, and supporting a repeal of the Citizens United U.S. Supreme Court decision.
Baber also does not like the mountaintop removal method of coal mining. But he wanted to make clear he was not "anti-coal."
He said he favors developing a "long-term plan" for a region that may only have 15 years of coal left to extract.
"All I'm saying is, let's start to think about a plan and not throw people out on the street, but give them some long-term jobs," Baber said.
He said leaders need to put a greater focus on reclaiming old mine lands and finding a way to diversify the state's energy economy. He said that could include putting solar panel facilities on some mountaintop removal sites.
"I know it's a little out of the box and dreamy, but I will say this: Who is dreaming for southern West Virginia? Who dreamed for them 50 years ago?" Baber said.
"If someone had dreamed for them 50 years ago, southern West Virginia wouldn't be among the poorest counties in the state," he said.
Baber is an award-winning Appalachian poet as well as a Kellogg National Leadership Fellow.
At Glenville, he manages the West Virginia Veterans' Legacy Project. The project just released a book profiling state veterans, titled "Heroes Among Us."
He said the title is meant to evoke the true nature of West Virginians.
"West Virginians are such a humble people that our heroes tend to remain hidden amongst us," he said. "To me, that's one of the most amazing things about West Virginia - I just love that about West Virginians - we are so sweet, unpretentious and kind."
Baber compared himself and his candidacy to that of Jimmy Stewart's character in Frank Capra's 1939 film "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington."
"If you want to vote for someone who understands you, is like you, cares about you and doesn't owe anyone anything, vote for me," Baber said. "Send Mr. Smith to Washington."