Top 5 Things To Know About Natalie Tennant (D-WV)

Natalie Tennant, West Virginia’s Secretary Of State, is running for West Virginia’s U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Senator Jay Rockefeller.

1. Tennant Said She Would “Probably” Have Voted For ObamaCare

During an interview in October 2013, Tennant said that she would “probably” have voted for ObamaCare. During the same interview, and when asked again by the New York Times, Tennant refused to answer the question. Prior to announcing her candidacy for the U.S. Senate, Tennant stressed the importance of passing ObamaCare.

2. Tennant Defended Obama’s Anti-Coal Policies

In 2012, Tennant defended President Obama’s stance on coal and said that she did not see Obama’s coal policies “as getting rid of coal.” After announcing her candidacy for U.S. Senate, Tennant changed her tune but she can’t run from her past comments now that she’s running for Senate.

3. Tennant Is A Liberal Democrat

In 2012, Tennant attended the Democratic National Convention and even contributed to Obama’s 2013 Inauguration Committee. At a New York City fundraiser in November 2013, Michelle Obama endorsed Tennant, saying that it was “critical” that Tennant is elected. Tennant’s campaign tried to claim that Michelle Obama urging people to elect Tennant was not an endorsement. Tennant’s campaign has received donations from liberal senators such as Elizabeth Warren, Kirsten Gillibrand, and Tammy Baldwin. Elizabeth Warren has also raised money for Tennant’s campaign.

4. Tennant Has Been An Incompetent Secretary Of State

Over the last 5 years, Tennant has messed up ballots, failed to negotiate contracts, missed deadlines, and even allowed a convicted felon onto the presidential primary ballot. In 2012, Tennant’s office made a mistake on the Republican presidential primary ballot that cost West Virginia taxpayers $148,705 to reprint the ballots and another $64,000 to reprogram the electronic voting machines. In 2011, Tennant’s office failed to negotiate a statewide maintenance contract for the state’s electronic voting machines. The failure left the county clerks holding the bill – Kanawha County was left with a $70,000 bill. County clerks complained that Tennant didn’t adequately communicate that they would be responsible for the bill. In 2012, Tennant allowed convicted felon Keith Judd on the Democratic presidential primary ballot even though 16 other states had kept him off the ballot.

She recently actually broke the laws she’s supposed to uphold.

5. With Natalie Tennant At The Helm, West Virginia’s Election Performance Has Been Ranked Poorly By Pew

In 2010, Natalie Tennant’s first non-special election year, Pew ranked West Virginia’s election performance 44th out of 50 states plus D.C. In the 2012 elections, West Virginia actually did worse, ranking 45th out of 51. In 2008, the year Tennant was elected, voter turnout in West Virginia was 51.15 percent. In 2012, four years after Tennant took over as the state’s highest-ranked elections official,voter turnout in West Virginia was 46.33 percent. That’s a decrease of almost 5 percentage points despite Tennant campaigning in 2008 on increasing voter turnout in the state. the voter turnout of 46.33 percent resulted in West Virginia ranking 50th for voter turnout.

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