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Nick Casey announces run for Congress

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Four years after Nick Casey left the position of West Virginia Democratic Party chairman, he said he wanted to go to Washington to help.

"I'm Nick Casey, I'm running for Congress in the 2nd District, and I need your help," Casey said to the crowd gathered at the state Capitol.

Casey said he, like many other West Virginians, became fed up with the gridlock in Congress.

"They cannot get along," he said. "That affects us all."

Casey described himself to the crowd as an "old CPA," who practiced law for a long time and said he could see the problems.

His priorities include roads, bridges and public works, an energy policy and keeping young West Virginians home. And he said success is all about priorities, comparing it to his church, St. Agnes, prioritizing its budget.

Casey said the gathered group represented the "entire universe of West Virginia," with teachers, senior citizens, lawyers and health care workers who were not all members of the same political party.

He pointed out Kanawha County Sheriff John Rutherford, Charleston Mayor Danny Jones, former Sen. Carte Goodwin and former Adj. Gen. Maj. Allen Tackett.

"We have different politics, but I think we share the same vision, and we can get along," Casey said. "I pledge to you I will take advantage of this opportunity."

A letter from U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin was read by long-time friend Jack Rossi. Manchin described Casey as having a "never give-up attitude" and said in that letter that Casey had supported him in his first race nearly 20 years ago.

Casey said he learned early in his days as party chairman that a chairman is not a candidate, because it gets confusing and creates competition, but he said he wanted to announce his candidacy early because he had received so much support.

"We're in it to win it," Casey said. "I can help the United States Congress do better."

Casey joins three candidates who have already filed pre-candidacy paperwork with the West Virginia Secretary of State's Office for the open House of Representatives seat. Those candidates are former Delegate Larry V. Faircloth, a Republican from Berkeley County whose son, Larry Faircloth, currently represents Berkeley County in the House of Delegates and also is a Republican; Robert Lawrence Fluharty, a Republican from Charles Town; and Steven Alex Gower, a Democrat from Weston.

Delegate Doug Skaff, D-Kanawha, said last week he would announce his future campaign plans soon, and Young Democrats of America President Rod Snyder said he would announce any campaign plans by the end of May. Jefferson County resident Matt Dunn has a website supporting his run at the 2nd District seat, but he has not yet officially filed.

Rep. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., who has held the seat since 2001, announced in November she would run for U.S. Senate.