Representative McKinley looks beyond partisan political drama | News, Sports, Jobs
WHEELING – US Congressman David McKinley highlighted the many blessings West Virginia should be grateful for, adding that there is no doubt his controversial vote for the bipartisan infrastructure bill was the right thing to do.
“In over 11 years in Congress, being your representative, I have never had the chance to vote on an infrastructure bill” McKinley, RW.Va., told members of the Wheeling Rotary Club on Tuesday. âWe never had the opportunity to vote. Finally this year, coming from the Senate – a bipartisan bill – written by people I trust.
McKinley, a Wheeling native, praised Senator Shelley Moore Capito, RW.Va., and Senator Joe Manchin, DW.Va., for their role in advancing the legislation. When the bill arrived in the House, McKinley was one of 13 Republicans who voted to support it and tip the scales toward passage.
The 13 members of Congress have since taken the heat from other GOP lawmakers, voters and even former President Donald Trump, who described the bill as a âTerrible democratic socialist infrastructure planâ.
Many members of Congress who voted outside party lines for the plan have recently seen their desks inundated with unsavory phone calls and emails about it. Some, including McKinley, have even received death threats.
“I have no qualms about having voted for” McKinley said. âYes, we have received death threats. My wife has been threatened and I can continue. It was the right thing to do and I have no qualms about doing it.
On Tuesday, McKinley remained steadfast in his position on the bill, and that $ 6 billion will now come to West Virginia to help with vital infrastructure projects.
“So I’m going to get into partisan politics and vote ‘no’? It will not arrive, “ he said on Tuesday. âI vote for West Virginia, and I did. Now, what I’m hoping for is that we’ll start to see the benefits – how it’s going to help us. “
McKinley said the infrastructure bill money will be sent to Charleston first and then it will be distributed over a “Competitive basis”. Areas of the state that suffer from a lack of clean water and broadband internet service will be high on the priority list.
McKinley said infrastructure funding will help foster growth and give West Virginia’s future generations a better chance to grow up in their home state. He said the $ 550 billion infrastructure bill is expected to add “zero” to the national debt, unlike the social spending bill which was passed in the House by a split vote. This should increase the debt, he stressed.
“Look at what’s going on with inflation”, McKinley said. âInflation is a tax for everyone.
“But we found out that in Washington they can’t chew gum and walk at the same time.”
One element according to McKinley was “slipped into” the infrastructure bill targets carbon emissions, but it aims to maintain the viability of the fossil fuel industry by doing so.
“It’s the backbone of our economy here in the Ohio Valley – our fossil fuels – coal, gas and oil,” he said. âWe need to find a way to capture the carbon so that our power plants have zero emissions. This has been my goal for 11 years. Find ways to keep our fossil fuel plants open, but emission free, so that they are on a par with wind, solar, hydropower and nuclear. We are right on the cutting edge.
Ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday, McKinley said he was grateful to be home in the Ohio Valley and cited a myriad of things everyone should be thankful for. From the availability of effective COVID-19 vaccines to the fact that our military is not currently engaged in any active combat missions, he said our country has much to be thankful for.
As is the state of West Virginia and the greater Wheeling area, he noted. McKinley cited the opening of trips under the ongoing Interstate 70 Bridges project, WVU Medicine’s management of Wheeling Hospital and the Mitchell Power Plant continued operations plan as great examples of silver liners in difficult times.
Other sources of pride in the Wheeling area, he pointed out, include local schools and colleges, Wheeling newspapers, Wheeling Nailers, Ohio County Airport, the Wheeling Symphony and other entities that help define the community and give it the kind of character that has always “fought over his weight.”
“I am grateful to the people who believe in us and in this community as they continue to invest in it” he said. âI’m grateful to just be a part of this community.
“On a lighter note, I’m pretty happy that this football season at Mountaineer Stadium is over,” he said.