POINT PLEASANT — A few months into the Presidency of Donald J. Trump, and U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) had plenty to say about it and it’s effect on Capitol Hill.
Capito was the keynote speaker at Thursday’s Mason County Republican Dinner held at the American Legion Post #23 in Point Pleasant, with Commander Miles Epling introducing the senator.
Capito touched upon many of the issues Americans are watching closely, including health care plans.
“I have voted to repeal Obamacare at least 60 times…we’ve got to fix it,” Capito said, citing places like West Virginia where the insurance carriers are limited.
Capito said she wouldn’t support a plan that was going to “hurt anyone in this room..or anyone” and that the “plan coming out of the House is a bit imperfect in my opinion.”
She said she felt some changes would be made to the plan, concerning Medicaid and the exchange issue.
“We need to make sure the people who need the most help are people who get the most help,” she said, adding she wants to repeal and replace Obamacare but in a way that’s “right for all of us.”
As for President Trump, she said a big misconception about him is that he’s not a good listener.
“He’s a very good listener…he listens very well and for those who have made deals in the business world, you’ve got to listen. That gives me hope, not just for leadership but hope for my ability to talk about where we are in West Virginia and how we feel,” she explained.
She told the audience, “we know coal’s not going to come back to where it was” but that it was a necessary part of the energy mix and Trump was providing some regulatory relief, after eight years of the Obama Administration. She explained there are some estimates that the regulatory relief Trump has already put forward had translated into $41 billion. She said there’s no mystery about Trump and that he is doing what he said he would.
“He has really poured Washington into a shaker and has been shaking it up,” she said, making a joke about falling asleep and waking up to something new that has happened overnight.
She also said she felt the president has made “some really great picks” for his cabinet, many she’s gotten to meet. She said next week, the big news will be the confirmation of Neil Gorsuch for the Supreme Court. She called Gorsuch, “well respected” and said he would receive her vote.
She also addressed the young people in the room, saying the future depends on those young people feeling their voice counts and their opinions are heard and respected, despite differences – and differences shouldn’t translate into “picking” on others or “singling them out” due to another political opinion.
In addition, she spoke about continuing to work on broadband deployment for the state, saying she didn’t want rural America left out and without that connection people couldn’t transition into new opportunities or move forward. She added she was hoping funding for this would be in the president’s stimulus package.
Reach Beth Sergent at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @BSergentWrites.