West Virginia state Sen. Richard Ojeda (D) hit back at President Trump on Friday for his repeated attacks, saying he refuses to concede to the president.
The populist Democrat garnered more than 40 percent of the vote compared to Rep.-elect Carol Miller’s (R) 56 percent in West Virginia’s 3rd District.
While stumping for Miller in October, Trump mispronounced Ojeda’s name and warned people not to vote for him in Tuesday’s midterm elections, calling the Army veteran a “total wacko” and “stone-cold crazy.”
But Ojeda said he would gladly put up with Trump’s name-calling if it means standing up for his fellow West Virginians.
“If you want to label me a ‘stone cold crazy wacko’ because I cannot go to sleep at night knowing that we’ve got children hungry, that we’ve got elderly people cutting meds in half because we are attacking social security; we have an opioid epidemic that has killed more than the lives lost and we don’t have nobody who has a backbone to stand up to big Pharma, then I will gladly be ‘stone cold crazy’ and I will be your ‘wacko.’” Ojeda told Hill.TV co-hosts Krystal Ball and Buck Sexton on “Rising.”
Ojeda, who once endorsed Trump but now opposes him, emphasized he would have won his House race against Miller if Trump hadn’t come down to the state “throwing stones” and warned that he will not be defeated so easily.
“I’m not done with this fight, I’m going to continue my fight and President Donald Trump is going to learn who I am, he’s going to learn how to say my name properly,” he said.
Ojeda issued a similar fiery concession speech on Wednesday, where he made it clear he lost because of Trump — not Miller.
“Because of you, the people in southern West Virginia will have another voiceless representative that supports legislation that hurts our working-class citizens,” he said, addressing the president.
Polls showed a tight race, but Miller beat Ojeda with relative ease in a district that Trump won by almost 50 points in the 2016 election. Still, Ojeda lost by a smaller margin than expected at less than 13 percent.
Ojeda will remain the state senator for West Virginia’s 7th District, where he first gained national recognition after helping teachers in the state win a pay raise.
— Tess Bonn
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