CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP/WDTV/GRAY DC) — UPDATE 11/11/19 @ 11:04 a.m.
Former CEO Don Blankenship announced Monday that he is a candidate for the Constitution Party nomination for President of the United States.
Blankenship posted the announcement on Facebook, Twitter and his website. He chose to make the announcement on Veteran's Day in recognition of America's veterans.
Blankenship ran for the Republican Party nomination, looking to unseat incumbent Sen. Joe Manchin (D-West Virginia). Blankenship finished third in the G.O.P. field, with then Attorney General Patrick Morrisey (R-WV) winning the nomination. Manchin won re-election that November, beating out Morrisey 49.5% - 46.3%.
Blankenship said he will, "flush the swamp, balance the budget, fix and update our infrastructure, get term limits passed, reconcile our differences, greatly reduce healthcare costs with pragmatic solutions, conduct a true war on the opiate drug epidemic, enforce our laws, and provide citizenship to millions of immigrants who deserve it."
According to Blankenship, he believes he's the perfect choice for citizens who can no longer stand drama and want solutions rather than arguments.
Blankenship's Facebook post says that he will be attempting to be the first person to ever become an occupant of the White House after having been in the "big house." He is the former C.E.O. of Massey Energy, who owned a mine in West Virginia where a mine explosion killed 29 workers in 2010. He spent one year in a federal prison for a misdemeanor safety violations related to the explosion.
Former coal executive and ex-federal prisoner Don Blankenship says he’ll seek the Constitution Party’s presidential nomination next year.
West Virginia Constitution Party chairman Jeffrey-Frank Jarrell says Blankenship made the announcement Saturday during the party’s national committee meeting in Pittsburgh.
Blankenship finished third in the 2018 Republican primary for a U.S. Senate seat held by West Virginia Democrat Joe Manchin. Blankenship’s general election bid to run as the Constitution Party’s nominee was then blocked. The secretary of state cited the state’s “sore loser” law prohibiting major-party primary candidates who lose from switching to a minor party.
Blankenship is the ex-CEO of Massey Energy, which owned a West Virginia mine where a 2010 explosion killed 29 workers. He spent a year in federal prison for misdemeanor safety violations related to the explosion.