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Anti-LGBTQ advocate enters GOP Senate primary

Allen Whitt

Allen Whitt



The leader of an anti-LGBTQ policy group announced a Republican primary challenge to Sen. Shelley Moore Capito.

Allen Whitt, president of the Family Policy Council of West Virginia, announced Monday he would get in the race.

“I’m running to bring West Virginia values to Washington,” Whitt said in a statement. “As a Republican, I campaigned for Shelley Moore Capito in 2014, but conservatives have been let down too many times by her votes and her statements. Her most recent comments on supporting red flag laws simply don’t represent the views of the majority of West Virginians.”

On Tuesday, he said in a statement he joined others on the steps of the U.S. Supreme Court to rally in support of the right of employers to discriminate against transgender people. He also affirmed his opposition to legislation that would extend federal anti-discrimination protections to LGBTQ people.

Capito won her seat in 2014 by nearly 28 points. According to July polling from Morning Consult, a nonpartisan public opinion firm, 46 percent of voters approve of Capito compared to 32 percent who don’t. However, her approval rating has trended downward since early 2017.

Currently, Paula Jean Swearengin is the only Democrat running in the primary. The Federal Election Commission website also lists Franklin Riley as a candidate for Senate, but his party is not listed.

Reach Jake Zuckerman at, 304-348-4814 or follow @jake_zuckerman on Twitter.

Funerals for Sunday, October 20, 2019

Fink, Janice - 1:30 p.m., United Disciples of Christ Church, South Charleston.

Honaker, Dewey - 2 p.m., Arnett Assembly of God Church, Arnett.

Jenkins, Tina - 2 p.m., Hafer Funeral Home, Elkview.

Payne, Joseph - 3 p.m., Gateway Christian Church, St. Albans.

Snyder, Janice - 4 p.m., Snodgrass Funeral Home, South Charleston.

Vance, Kendall - 2 p.m., Handley Funeral Home, Danville.