WV AG Race Update: Momentum Building for Sam Petsonk Heading into Final Weeks

October 14, 2020


In case you missed it, three key editorial boards recently endorsed Democratic AG nominee Sam Petsonk for West Virginia Attorney General.

  • The Charleston Gazette-Mail editorial board endorsed Sam Petsonk writing, “Petsonk realizes the office of attorney general is there to serve the people of West Virginia and has vowed to hold other branches of government accountable for dubious behavior.” The editorial board goes on to say, “Petsonk is a West Virginian who has spent his career making sure the everyday people big business often steamrolls are represented and heard.” And they close with, “We urge West Virginians to vote for Petsonk. He is, by far, the better candidate.”
  • The Herald-Dispatch editorial board endorsed Sam Petsonk writing, “Petsonk has focused on labor and employment law, workplace safety and health, black lung benefits, retirees’ rights, the rights of people in recovery, and various class action matters to assist workers following layoffs. In other words, he has worked on matters of importance to working-class West Virginians.”
  • The Dominion Post editorial board endorsed Sam Petsonk writing, “Petsonk has an obvious respect for the law, and he brings warmth, vitality and enthusiasm to the table. We think he would make for an excellent attorney general for West Virginia.”


The editorial boards also called out Republican AG Morrisey, who is struggling to win over voters due to his dangerous record on health care and close ties to the opioid industry:

  • The Charleston Gazette-Mail editorial board wrote, “Morrisey has kept West Virginia a party to this lawsuit despite being in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.” They go on to say, “The current attorney general also has accepted low-ball settlements for lawsuits against drug manufacturers and distributors, even though the opioid epidemic has ravaged West Virginia arguably more than any other state in the country.” And they close by noting, “Morrisey came here from New Jersey with the purpose of getting elected, has pursued action that has and will directly hurt West Virginians and now wants to entrench himself because his two-term plan didn’t work.”
  • The Herald-Dispatch editorial board wrote, “Morrisey was elected eight years ago when he defeated longtime Democratic Party stalwart Darrel McGraw. Voters thought it was time for a change. They were right. Morrisey has not distinguished himself in office, and it’s time for another change.”
  • The Dominion Post editorial board wrote, “Morrisey was a no call, no show.”


These three endorsements combined with Senator Joe Manchin’s endorsement – who beat Patrick Morrisey two years ago in the Senate race – show clear momentum for Sam Petsonk’s campaign to be West Virginia’s next Attorney General. Morrisey is a weak incumbent with a bad reputation with voters. His struggling campaign forced the Republican Attorneys General Association to spend over $1.7 million in a state Trump won by more than 40 points.

The endorsements follow Q3 finance reports showing a stark contrast between who is supporting the candidates. AG Morrisey continues to live up to the name Pain Pill Pat, accepting contributions from big PHARMA lobbyists whose companies have ravaged the state. Meanwhile, Sam Petsonk is powered by the people, with more than 60% of his contributions coming from West Virginians and 80% under $100.

Sam Petsonk is gaining the momentum because he is focusing on solutions to the issues important to West Virginians heading into the final weeks of the campaign.

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