The Mountain Party’s (that is, the West Virginia affiliate of the Green Party) candidate for US Senate Jesse Johnson participated today in an anti-mountaintop removal protest at the White House. More than 100 people were arrested at the protest in an act of civil disobedience, although Johnson does not appear to be one of them.
From the Louisville, Kentucky Courier Journal:
The Green Party’s U.S. Senate candidate in West Virginia, Jesse Johnson, sang Crosby, Stills and Nash’s “Find the Cost of Freedom” and told the crowd that the coal industry wants “to erase our history” in Appalachia.
“When they tell you mountaintop removal means jobs — mountaintop removal kills jobs,” Johnson said.
You can listen to Johnson talking about the protest here – he is the only candidate in the race who is against mountaintop removal.
The event has drawn hundreds of anti-mountaintop removal activists and supports from all across the nation. The event was attended by noted climatologist Dr. James Hansen, authors Erik Reece and Silas House, Native American activist Matthew Sherman, country music star Big Kenny, and others. Johnson spoke to West Virginia Watchdog from in front of the White House, where activists had organized an act of civil disobedience.
Johnson is running against Democratic Gov. Joe Manchin, Republican John Raese, and Constitution Party candidate Jeff Becker. Both Manchin and Raese support mountaintop removal, while Johnson does not. Johnson was recently endorsed by former Congressman and Secretary of State Ken Hechler, who lost to Manchin in the August Democratic primary. Hechler was running on an anti-mountaintop removal platform.