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Ohio County Democratic Headquarters Opens in Downtown Wheeling

Ohio County Democrats kicked off the 2016 general election season by opening their party headquarters Wednesday night in downtown Wheeling.

Information, literature and signs supporting Democrats on the Ohio County ballot can be found at the headquarters, located at 1310 Market St. — the former location of the Wheeling Area Chamber of Commerce.

Ohio County Commissioner Orphy Klempa, also co-chairman of the Ohio County Democratic Party, addressed party faithful, telling them it’s important Democrats get out to vote in the Nov. 8 general election.

“When Democrats get out to the polls and vote, Democrats win,” Klempa said.

Former Delegate Mike Manypenny of Grafton, W.Va. — a Democrat candidate for U.S. House representing West Virginia’s 1st District, opposing Rep. David McKinley, R-W.Va. — was among candidates present. And he said understanding the needs of young people is a focus of his campaign.

If elected, Manypenny promised to donate one-third of his salary to establishing college scholarships for students coming from low-income families.

“And we believe if we require all government projects to use American products, we would see the economy rise in America,” he said. “All infrastructure projects require asphalt. Even on a limited basis, there would be a demand for coal and coal mining jobs, as well as support industries.”

Tiffany Hoffman, Democratic candidate for Ohio County assessor, said she plans to start her door-to-door campaigning next week. She was appointed to the ballot to fill the spot of her mother, former county Assessor Kathie Hoffman, who died in July, and will face Independent candidate Katrina Taylor in November.

“I will maintain the open-door policy of the office, and seek to uphold the legacy of my mom while gaining the respect of taxpayers,” Tiffany Hoffman said.

Tom Howard is the Democrat candidate for sheriff in Ohio County. A member of the Wheeling Police Department for 20 years, he has served as prevention resource officer at Triadelphia Middle School for the past six years.

“My focus is the community — it always will be,” he said. “And the schools, of course — I’ll be there for the schools, no matter what.”

Howard, who will face Republican John Powell in November, believes drug abuse to be a major problem in Ohio County, and he promised to work with the Department of Justice to find grant money for programs to help rehabilitate and establish support programs for abusers.

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