2020 Candidates

Stephen Smith Democrat Candidate for Governor

Charleston, West Virginia: From the Mine Wars to the Educators Strike, it is in our blood to fight for our people, no matter their race, their accent, or who their father was. Find the people who work the hardest and bear the most–that’s whose side we are on. 

   That’s the kind of family I grew up in–my dad helped start the WV Coalition for the Homeless and the Public Defender Services. My mom made our house the kind of place that always had extra people in it–foster kids, neighbors, extended family members. 

   My wife Sara and I chose to live in West Virginia, because we wanted to raise our family in a place that cares more about who you serve than what you own. We became foster parents and chose careers in public service.

   Before running for governor, I ran an anti-poverty organization that helped pass more than two dozen pieces of legislation, using old fashioned people power: health insurance for 182,000, a raise in the minimum wage, 5+ million more school breakfasts annually. Meanwhile, we lifted-up more than 300 community projects. We helped build gardens, after-school programs, and small businesses. Our organization knew that the people who are closest to a problem are the ones best suited to solve it. 

   That belief also forms the foundation of my campaign for Governor. No outside company or billionaire politician will save us. We must save ourselves. It is time to keep our wealth here and bet on our own people, unions, and small businesses.

   We are running the only campaign for Governor that: refuses money from corporate PAC’s; the only campaign to visit every county at least twice; the only campaign with a unionized campaign staff. And we 

the last year recruiting, training, and supporting 92 other pro-labor, no-corporate-cash candidates to run for local office.

   Together, we built our New Deal for West Virginia from the ground up, through 197 Town Halls and over 11,000 conversations with voters. We are the only campaign in either party that supports a state bank, an end to election buying, universal child care, full cannabis legalization, and the creation of a Corporate Crime and Political Corruption division in our state police. We are the only campaign to propose a $280+ million raise for teachers and school service personnel (in addition to fixing PEIA). We have plans on broadband access, a workers’ bill of rights, ending discrimination and mass incarceration, rebuilding our water infrastructure and roads, and massive tax breaks for small business and family farms. You can read our proposals and how we pay for them by ending corporate welfare, at wvcantwait.com. If you don’t like what you see, contact me directly at [email protected] or 304.610.6512.

   In the middle of this crisis, West Virginians know we need a bold vision for the state – not another Good Old Boy Governor. That’s why we are winning in the latest polls and we just broke the record for most donations ever. I hope to earn your vote too.