CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Bob Henry Baber, the Mountain Party’s candidate for U.S. Senate, says he’s running “to represent probably 20 percent of West Virginians who are not otherwise going to have a voice in the race.”

Bob Henry Baber

Baber touched on many issues during Monday’s appearance on MetroNews “Talkline.” His interview was part of a series featuring candidates leading up to the Nov. 4 general election.

Too much of this year’s Senate race, he said, is focused on coal.

“I do think it’s sort of degenerated into who loves coal the most and who dislikes (President Barack) Obama the most and that doesn’t really seem to be much of a platform to run on,” Baber said.

Environmentally, Baber said he supports transitioning—over time—from coal to alternative energy sources, primarily solar energy.

“We talk about clean coal but there’s nothing clean about it. I don’t think the EPA is really leading the parade, though, in the decline of coal, particularly here in Appalachia,” Baber said. “I think it’s natural gas, if you look at the course of history and you find that gas is gaining and coal is losing.”

Baber said mountaintop removal mining is also nearing its end. “It might end in five years, it might end in 25 years, but it’s going to end and who’s making a plan for that?” he said. “I never hear anybody talk about anything except protect, protect, protect those miners’ jobs.”

Baber said he considers himself a Federalist. “I believe that Social Security wouldn’t exist if it weren’t for the federal government. Our immigration issues are going to have to be solved on a federal level. Health care is going to have to be solved on a federal level,” he explained.

“I work up here at Glenville State College. If it weren’t for federal Pell grants, Glenville State College would quickly find itself in financial troubles.” Baber is employed as a grant writer and developer at Glenville State.

He became the state Mountain Party’s first candidate to be elected to office when he won the Richwood mayor’s race in Nicholas County in 2004. He served until his resignation in 2007. There had been an effort underway to impeach him but, at the time, Baber said that attempt had nothing to do with his decision to leave office.

This is not Baber’s first run for U.S. Senate. He picked up more than 19,000 votes in the 2012 U.S. Senate race that included U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Republican John Raese. In 2011, Baber unsuccessfully ran for governor in the special gubernatorial election.

In addition to Baber, the other U.S. Senate candidates are Libertarian John Buckley, Republican 2nd District Congresswoman Shelley Moore Capito and Democratic Secretary of State Natalie Tennant.

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Comments

  • Harpers Ferry

    I'll only vote for him if he supports the "Cash for your Stache Program".

  • wv4evah

    Baber has a steep uphill climb, obviously..but the fact that he knows it's the 21st Century should give him some traction in the Senate race.

  • Pickle Barrel

    Bob Henry's only attribute in this race is that he'll take votes away from the female musket-toter.

    • Hillboy

      not many in my opinion. Most people who would vote for Baber probably wouldn't vote for either NT or SMC if he wasn't running.

  • thornton

    "a grant writer".....hmm.

    In 2011, Baber espoused a total ban on hydraulic fracturing(or fracking, good grief) if the surface owner wishes no fracturing to occur....naturally, there can be more than one surface owner and the loudest whiners traditionally own no mineral rights where they reside.
    Bob is odd.

    The MP itself is against clear-cutting and seeks old-growth as a forest goal.
    The Mountain Party is odder than Bob, evidenced by such a poor understanding of a healthy forest.
    They insult the name they claim.

    A pox on 'em both.

  • T.

    Sorry, sir, but supporting coal is what it is ALL about!! And the Obama administration is the trouble! Plain and simple. And anyone supporting Obama will lose in the fall! Period.

    • Jordan

      You hit on the nail head there T West Virginia is all about coal!!!

    • Drama Queen Conservative Troll

      The fact of the matter is that coal has only been a blight to West Virginia. Look at what it has done to the communities of the Coalfields, not to mention the economics and politics of the state. We would have been much better off if no one saw that large black rock in the Coal River long ago.

    • BR

      Really?

      And the other 600,000 working West Virginians and THEIR families, children, and communities have no say?

      A lot of us are, frankly, are getting a little sick of hearing about how 50 thousand coal miners run the entire state.
      I guess coal miners can ALSO run all the police depts., hospitals, construction projects, schools, fire depts., and business too, huh??

      You can chirp about "electricity" all you want: but do coal miners and their families you ever use a hospital? Send a kid to school? Call 911? Drive on public roads? Shop for goods?

      YES ..... I went there. And I'd tell that to ANY coal miner to his FACE!
      There are 1.6 million WVians and MOST of us have nothing to do with the coal industry!
      If you work in a mine - YOU choose to make some decisions!!
      $65,000 a year with barely a high school degree is one of them. Getting sick or laid-off is the other. I have nothing against those coal miners; but don't you DARE tell me the other millions + of us don't matter!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • zero tolerance

        +1

        Thank you! Someone with brain marginalized by coal!

        AMEN!

  • Ole Sasquatch

    I would just like to pile on to.

  • David Kennedy

    When I saw this guys picture,
    I thought it was Bob Wise...
    ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha
    Even the Democrats wouldn't do that to us again...or would they?
    I mean...they did bring back Cecil....
    ha ha ha ha

    • Hillboy

      Bob Wise's comb-over went east-west, not north-south.

    • BH

      Are you referring to Cecil Underwood? He was a Republican.

    • MTNR

      Hey David,

      Are you referring to former Governor Cecil Underwood?

      Yeah, he was a Republican.

      • David Kennedy

        The Democrats brought Cecil from retirement in Florida to run against Charlotte Pritt.
        The UMWA threw the election in the southern part of WV and the rest is history.
        The Democrat Party backed Cecil...there I've said it again.

        • Hillboy

          I've heard that before and find it totally plausible---Cecil could have been a WV Democrat and nobody would had a second thought.

          The part I disagree with is where you say that they brought him out of retirement. While governor, he was still in retirement---just in a different location.

  • Jordan

    This guy is a joke he won't win nothing and he shouldn't either. I'm glad metro news pointed him out so no one will vote for him.

    Obama and the EPA has killed this state and coal

  • will

    Perhaps it can't be just about those two issues alone, but it is a GOOD start.

  • RogerD

    Thank you Shauna and WV MetroNews for providing some background on who this individual is. I wish there was a viable alternative to Capito and Tennant and now it's clear to that Baber isn't it. Does this guy even have a high school education?

  • hillbilly

    He kind of sounds like a "big government" advocator to me. House and Senate have not been able to solve or compromise on anything for several years now, so how does he think these issues must be solved on a Federal level??

    • Big Bob-E

      Of course....they'll be solved by loving coal and hating Obama...exactly!

      • Rodney Hytonen

        "Democrats"(none exist...) = Republicans = corporate rule.

        = textbook fascism.

        It IS that simple -
        because greed is that absolute.
        It has destroyed West VIriginia over two centuries of extractionism, and as it's spreading, will destroy the rest of the country, and quite possibly the world.

        Ask yourself why the state richest in resources has the poorest population n an individual basis (and one of the highest CONSUMER utility bills.)