Ex-Con West Virginia Senate Candidate Blankenship Already Threatening to Run for President
on Blankenship served just a year in prison for conspiracy after 29 people died in one of his coal mines. Now he's running to become the Republican nominee for the U.S. Senate in West Virginia. If he wins today's GOP primary he'll face Democratic Senator Joe Manchin, the state's former governor.
Blankenship is under fire for a horrific campaign. Racism is its most recent feature, stemming from an ad in which he uses the terms "China people," and "Cocaine Mitch," and insists it's not racist by using the word "Negro."
A multi-millionaire, Blankenship has spent over a million dollars of his own money to fund his campaign.
According to reports, if he doesn't win the GOP nomination, he may run as an independent. He can certainly afford to. But recent internal polls show that may not happen – Blankenship is currently leading in the three-way race for the nomination.
Blankenship is calling himself "Trumpier than Trump." Whatever that's supposed to mean.
Meanwhile, it appears the 68-year old may not be satisfied with winning – or losing – a U.S. Senate seat.
In a just-published profile from The New Yorker, Carolyn Kormann discusses her interaction with Blankenship after attending a rally for supporters last week at a local West Virginia restaurant
After the town hall ended, Blankenship left Macado’s alone. I had more questions and said I’d follow him out. “In another situation, that wouldn’t be a bad thing,” he said, holding the door for me. “But I don’t think that’s what you had in mind.”
That certainly sounds creepy – not to mention he's engaged to be married.
We stepped into the parking lot. “You’re not allowed to see my car,” he said. “It’s got Nevada plates.” (Blankenship’s opponents have criticized him for spending most of his time at his home in Las Vegas, where his fiancÃ©e lives.) As he looked for his keys, he began telling me about how he used to travel around the country with his son, who competes professionally in rally-car races. “I can’t drive across state lines,” he said. “Until Wednesday!” The day after the primary, his year-long probation will end.
Suddenly, Blankenship turned to me and said, “Are you a bad person?” I try not to be, I replied. “Well, most reporters are bad people,” he said. “But maybe they don’t know it.” We exchanged business cards. He told me to hold on to his for when he’s President. “If Trump gets in my way, I’ll just run against him,” he said.
Yes, the racist convicted criminal who's supposedly "Trumpier than Trump" is now threatening to run for president – against Trump.