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The Our Children, Our Future campaign has spent the past two years rallying around social issues, many of which are meant to raise West Virginia children out of poverty, at the state level. This year, however, the campaign is throwing its hat into the election ring.
The organization hosted a forum Tuesday for Congressional candidates in Charleston, inviting Democrats, Republicans and third party candidates alike. In all, four candidates made appearances in person, two through videos and one through letter.
The forum itself, however, was not a place for the candidates to debate each other. Instead, organizer Stephen Smith said it was focused on the issue of child poverty in West Virginia and how that candidate could promote the organization’s agenda at the federal level.
Secretary of State Natalie Tennant, Auditor Glen Gainer, Libertarian Davy Jones and Mountain Party candidate Bob Henry Baber participated in person. Congressman Nick Rahall read a prepared statement via skype, Senator Evan Jenkins sent a video message and Congressman David McKinley sent a representative to read a letter.
Smith said the campaign does not intend to endorse any candidates for Congressional office before mid-term elections in November. Instead, he said he wants the candidates to see the importance of their work and compete for their votes.
Editor’s note: In an earlier version of this story, we reported Davy Jones was an Independent. Jones is a Libertarian running in the 2nd Congressional District. The story has been updated to reflect his correct affiliation.