West Virginia Secretary of State Natalie Tennant says she’s disappointed state leaders like U.S. Senator Joe Manchin are not attending this week’s Democrat National Convention in Charlotte, NC.
Speaking on MetroNews Talkline Thursday from the DNC, Tennant said, "It would have been nice to have [Manchin] here. I wanted to see him here. I’m disappointed,” Tennant said.
Governor Earl Ray Tomblin as well as Third District Congressman Nick Rahall also chose not to attend the convention. Sen. Jay Rockefeller is the only national representative from West Virginia to make the trip to Charlotte. Rockefeller was one of the first to back Obama during the 2008 election.
The main divider between Manchin and Tomblin and the President is coal. Obama has made it clear he wants to curb the use of coal which Manchin and Tomblin argue will devastate West Virginia’s economy.
Tennant says she feels the President Obama’s stance on coal is the wrong one as well.
"Me, being a statewide official. Me, as Natalie Tennant, need to make sure that we have a good economy in West Virginia,” she said. “So we have our differences with the President on that aspect."
But on so many other issues, Tennant says the party, as a whole, is on the same page.
She stresses not one candidate has all the correct answers.
"I hope people don’t look at me and think I’m a perfect candidate. I’m not. Barack Obama is not the perfect candidate. Joe Manchin is not. Neither is Earl Ray Tomblin. None of us are,” Tennant said.
The convention closes Thursday evening with the acceptance speech of the President.