To many West Virginia voters, it already is clear electing Rep. Shelley Capito, R-W.Va., to the Senate will be a critical step in undoing some of the damage done by Washington liberals in control of public policy.
But there are two houses of Congress - and protecting Mountain State residents requires battling the liberals in both of them.
Capito clearly has the best interests of her fellow West Virginians at heart. On issues of importance to us, she can be relied upon.
But her Democrat opponent in the Senate race, Secretary of State Natalie Tennant, is different. Tennant has refused steadfastly to pledge that, if elected, she would vote to oust Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev.
As Rep. David McKinley, R-W.Va., pointed out last week, Reid has been critically important in furthering President Barack Obama's agenda.
McKinley, who represents our area of the state, explained that conservatives in the House of Representatives have passed scores of bills aimed at reining in Obama's abuse of power.
But Reid, wielding nearly unprecedented power, has refused to allow senators to even vote on more than 350 House bills.
Think about that:?Single-handedly, Reid has turned back any meaningful challenge to Obama.
Electing Capito to the Senate could help end that suppression of representative democracy in America. Placing her opponent in the Senate would reinforce it.
But West Virginians should not allow concern about the Senate race to lull them into complacency about the House of Representatives.
McKinley himself has been behind some of the legislation Reid is blocking in the Senate. And McKinley is up for re-election this fall, facing a Democrat challenger, state Auditor Glen?Gainer - who, like Tennant, insists he will defend Mountain State interests.
But can Gainer be relied upon to oppose his own party to do that??No.
To get our state and nation back on course, thoughtful conservatives are needed in both houses of Congress. Winning the Senate while losing strength in the House of Representatives would do no good.
For that reason, voters in this area of West Virginia should concentrate equally on placing Capito in the Senate - and keeping McKinley in the House.