CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Long-time State Auditor Glen Gainer, III, tells Metronews he has decided not to run for re-election in 2016. The Democrat said he made the decision about two weeks ago to leave public life at the end of his sixth term and enter the private sector.
Gainer said his decision is not related to a recent controversy over the switch in state’s payroll to checks being distributed every two weeks instead of twice a month. Instead, Gainer said he just felt like it was time.
“Politics are changing,” Gainer said, adding that 24 years in the position is long enough. “I don’t want to be stagnant.”
Gainer, 56, added a little gallows humor about his decision. “I’m looking at the pictures (of former Auditors) on my wall and since 1960, two have died in office; I don’t want to be the third.”
Gainer refuted rumors that he might resign early. “I want to finish things,” Gainer said.
The name “Gainer” has become synonymous with the Auditor’s office. Denzil Gainer was elected Auditor in 1960. He died in office in 1972. In 1976, Glen Gainer, Jr, (Denzil Gainer’s cousin) was elected to the position. He was followed by his son, current Auditor Glen Gainer III, who was first elected in 1992 and five more terms after that.
His decision opens up that seat on the state Board of Public Works. Republican J.B. McCuskey earlier announced his decision to run for the office, while the Democratic Party will be looking for a viable candidate. McCuskey, a Charleston attorney, is currently serving his second two-year term in the House of Delegates representing Kanawha County’s 35th District.