Editor's note: This is the first of a two-part question-and-answer session with Bill Maloney, Republican candidate for West Virginia governor. Part two will be printed in Tuesday's edition.
Bill Maloney, 53
Republican candidate, West Virginia governor
Resides in Morgantown, W.Va.
Married, two children
Bill Maloney on ...
differences between him and Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin:
"When you've done the things I've done with my life, you think differently. We look at things in a different way. For instance, when I was down in Chile, I started asking questions about what they were going to use for a rescue capsule. And they had no idea. They were going to use the one we had at Quecreek (mine). We got into that, got some drawings, and thought that's not going to work. The hole is crooked. I remember drawing on a piece of paper, and thinking we need some rollers on this. Handed them to an engineer. ... My background is just different. I was with contractors recently talking about how we are going to fund infrastructure. I'm an old contractor, and I know it's a big issue. Our tax revenues are going down. The funding stream is just not there. You got to think differently about how to do things."
paying teachers more and dealing with the educational bureacracy in West Virginia:
"There was an audit that came out in January. I think it showed as much as $90 million in savings per year if we get rid of bureaucracy. Our state has more bureaucracy per pupil than any state in the country but one. There's nothing wrong with paying teachers more, getting the money down to a local level, and rewarding them based on performance. Those are all things that need to be done."
locality pay for teachers:
"It's like everything else in this state. Everything goes to the almighty golden dome in Charleston, and gets doled out like one-size-fits-all. In Jefferson and Berkeley counties, in particular, they should be keeping more of their money there. If they want to pay teachers $10,000 more a year, they should be able to do that. We've got to figure out a way to do that. I had one teacher speak up, and she could make $20,000 more per year moving across the state line. And so many people do that. They don't want to, but they get forced to do it. We've got to let them fix that. And they got school construction issues that can't keep up."
keeping young people in West Virginia:
"I've seen people start companies here. More often than not, they get going and they find out they can't really grow here. They end up in Maryland - which is stunning to me - or Virginia or Pennsylvania. They just move. They could be here. Look at the biometrics industry we tried to promote. It seems like they're all government jobs. There are definitely some private sector opportunities there if we just make it easier for them to create the capital they need here, and create a business. The talent is here.
"If you go down I-79, around Fairmont or Clarksburg ... most of those jobs are very high-tech. There are a lot of smart people. But they're all government-related. If we could just get them off in the private sector, and do some private sector security work. There are a couple of companies that are able to do that, and they've done pretty well.
getting his message out in southern West Virginia:
"Yes, we're making really good inroads. You hate to see what is happening in the mining industry. We've lost 3,000 mining jobs this year. So the coal miners are just outraged, as are their families. Their whole way of life is in jeopardy.
We need to fight back against Washington and Obama, and we're not doing a good enough job of doing it. I've seen ups and downs in my lifetime in the coal industry and natural gas pricing, but the government has never been in the equation like it is now. And we have to stop them."
"First of all, we need to fully repeal Obamacare. It's a huge tax increase. At the state level, until we get the numbers we can't jump into expanding Medicaid. This is a budget-buster here in West Virginia. We've seen some of the little things the governor has done. He's cut child care, and people are upset -- and rightfully so. Obamacare is a ticking time bomb, and we need some common sense solutions for health care. Not from this thing - it's not the common sense solution I think we need."
Editor's note: On Nov. 6, Voters in West Virginia will select between Republican Bill Maloney and Democrat Earl Ray Tomblin for West Virginia's next governor. Maloney spoke with the Sunday News-Register about his personal life and how he's getting his message out across the state.
Tell us something about yourself voters don't already know about you?
Maloney: "I have a new grandson - almost four-months old. Trouble is, he's in Charlotte (N.C.). I don't think anybody knows about him. I talk about him - but not enough. He's my first (grandchild). His name is Graham."
Has that changed your outlook on life?
Maloney: "Yes. We have to do what is right for our children and grandchildren, and we have to keep them in the state. I'm not alone in having to travel far and wide to see family. It's one of our biggest problems - we can't keep our children here."
What is a typical day for you on the campaign trail?
Maloney: "It's seem like they keep me out way too late all the time. I like getting to bed early, and up early. The up early part is still in there - but there's not enough hours. I like to get up and exercise every day. This morning I actually rode near (Cheat Lake). Yesterday it was a bike ride and a swim - something every morning to get your blood going, and it keeps your outlook better, too."
Is campaigning physically exhausting for you?
Maloney: "No, it's not bad. I tell people I sleep in a bed every night. It's not like when I was in the drilling business when you didn't know where you were going to sleep - if you were going to sleep. It grinds a little bit, but you meet some great folks and it's energizing."
Your opponent has been in public office for many years, and during that time he has had opportunities to meet many people throughout the state. Do you find yourself playing catch-up just getting people to know who you are, and what you stand for?
Maloney: "I think we faced a little bit of that. This year it has been much better because we've had a little bit more time and people knew who we are going in. Last year, nobody knew who we were.
"For instance we were in Logan ... and people knew who we were. And they are very supportive. People understand we are fighting the machine over there in D.C. ... They know who we are in southern West Virginia, and they didn't last year, I think.
Are you finding folks in the southern part of the state more receptive this time around to your message?
Maloney: "Yes, we're making really good inroads. You hate to see what is happening in the mining industry. We've lost 3,000 mining jobs this year. So the coal miners are just outraged, as are their families. Their whole way of life is in jeopardy.
"We need to fight back against Washington and Obama, and we're not doing a good enough job of doing it. I've seen ups and downs in my lifetime in the coal industry and natural gas pricing, but the government has never been in the equation like it is now. And we have to stop them.
"We had (Texas) Gov. Rick Perry in to help us, and we were talking to him while we were driving about what he has done in Texas to fight back. He said, 'I've got ... 22 actions' against the federal government for a a variety of issues - the EPA, DHHR. I think we've got two.
What are those two issues?
Maloney: "Manchin when he shot the Cap and Trade, he joined one action ... and (Tomblin) when he joined the utility MACT. We should have joined the carbon dioxide rules and the stream buffer. There are so many things we should be doing."
Let's talk about Obamacare. We understand that if the states refuse to go along with two things - the Medicaid expansion and the setting up insurance exchanges - if enough states refuse to do those things, Obamacare collapses. How would you handle that as governor? Would you urge the Legislature not to do either of those things?
Maloney: "First of all, we need to fully repeal Obamacare. It's a huge tax increase.
"At the state level, until we get the numbers we can't jump into expanding Medicaid. This is a budget-buster here in West Virginia. We've seen some of the little things the governor has done. He's cut child care, and people are upset - and rightfully so.
"Obamacare is a ticking time bomb, and we need some common sense solutions for health care. Not from this thing - it's not the common sense solution I think we need."
Wasn't there some movement in the governor's office toward setting up an insurance exchange?
Maloney: "I think we are the second state in the nation to start it - right behind California. We've already spent - last I heard - $14 million setting up an exchange. We shouldn't be doing it. We should be working hard to repeal the thing, and working with our Congressional delegation.
"We need some common sense things. There are a few things - insuring pre-existing conditions, allowing kids to stay on their parents' plans until they are 26. But we didn't even address tort reforms that would hold the cost of health care down, and maybe giving tax credits to people who purchase