Tennant, Capito take Democratic, Republican U.S. Senate slots - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

Tennant, Capito take Democratic, Republican U.S. Senate slots

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CHARLESTON, WV - A state's race for the U.S. Senate isn’t generally a ground-breaking election, but setup in West Virginia has the potential to create unique results.

A woman could take the spot for the first time.

Natalie Tennant, current secretary of state, was given the Democratic seat for the race and U.S. Rep. Shelley Moore Capito was declared the Republican winner — both just before 9 p.m. with about 10 percent of the statewide votes in.

A representative and friend speaking on behalf of Tennant the night she won, said Capito might have Wall Street but Tennant has “country roads.”

Accompanying Tennant to speak after her declared victory were her daughter, Delaney, and husband, Sen. Erik Wells, D-Kanawha.

Tennant also called for Capito to join her in five debates throughout the state between now and the November Primary Election.

According to research from Rutgers University, nine women are running for open seats in five states and another 16 women are running as challengers in 12 states. Women in both parties are running for nomination, with the potential for woman vs. woman general election contests in Georgia, Mexico, North Caroline, South Carolina, Texas and right here in the Mountain State.

Sixteen current, female senators are not up for re-election.

Tennant said she was running for the Senate seat to “put West Virginia first.” She said she would tackle the drug abuse problem in the state, as well as fighting the “gridlock” in Washington, D.C.

“West Virginia has the skill and know-how to lead the country in technology and manufacturing,” Tennant previously told The State Journal. “I will protect today’s coal jobs from EPA regulations, invest in tomorrow’s coal jobs with advanced coal technology and promote natural gas.”

Capito said if she wins she would put an end to President Barack Obama’s war on West Virginia's natural resources by promoting the state’s energy jobs. She previously told The State Journal there is a need to refocus on the nation’s spending priorities that would include infrastructure investments in the Mountain State to compete nationally and globally for new jobs.