In covering primary election results in West Virginia, James Hohmann wrote this: “Three in 10 Democrats voted for a no-name activist over [Sen. Joe] Manchin, who was also weaker than expected in coal country” [“Primaries confirm it’s a bad year to be a House Republican,” Daily 202 excerpt, May 10].
That “no-name activist” is Paula Jean Swearengin. Yes, she has a name. The Post spilled a lot of ink on another candidate in the Senate race, Don Blankenship, yet Swearengin got 48,302 votes to Blankenship’s 27,153. Why did Hohmann arrogantly dismiss a woman who ran a legitimate and clean campaign with the help of small-dollar donors and a committed group of grass-roots volunteers?
Swearengin and her supporters are owed an apology. Swearengin stood with striking teachers in all 55 counties, visited every part of the state and devoted a year of her life to her campaign. As long as The Post and Hohmann take the attitude that certain people, working-class women in this case, are beneath their notice, The Post’s “Democracy Dies in Darkness” slogan will become a self-fulfilling prophecy.
I contributed to and proudly supported Swearengin’s campaign, as did at least the 48,302 people in West Virginia who voted for her. She has a name. Use it.
Nancy Whalen, Shepherdstown, W.Va.