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West Virginia's General Election is Tuesday, November 3. WVPB will be covering the statewide races and offering NPR coverage of the national elections.

Longtime State Senator, Medical Doctor Enters Race For Governor

Emily Allen
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

A longtime state senator from Boone County has announced he is running for the Democratic nomination for governor in 2020. 

Sen. Ron Stollings filed pre-candidacy paperwork Monday at the Secretary of State’s office.

“It's been an incredible decision, because I love the Senate and I love the practice of medicine,” Stollings said Monday. “But at the same time, I love my state, I'm ready to do all I can to help the state of West Virginia.”

Stollings, who works full time as a medical doctor, was first elected to the West Virginia Senate in 2006. He was last elected to another four-year term in 2018.

“I have a lot of experience here in the senate -- 14 years. I'm a physician and I see problems with my patients and the citizens of West Virginia every day,” he said. “And I want to do something about it.”

At a brief Monday event, Stollings focused on the impact of the opioid crisis and how substance abuse disorder has affected the state.

“I am uniquely qualified in regards to the substance use disorder and its impact on our health, our economy and our education system in West Virginia,” he said. 

Stollings joins progressive Stephen Smith in the race for the Democratic nomination.  

Earlier this month, U.S. Senator and former governor Joe Manchin announced he would not run in the upcoming primary.

Those on the Republican ticket in 2020 include incumbent Gov. Jim Justice, businessman and former commerce secretary Woody Thrasher and former Del. Michael Folk.

A native of Washington, West Virginia, Dave Mistich joined West Virginia Public Broadcasting in October of 2012, as the Charleston Reporter. After bouncing around a variety of newsroom roles at WVPB, he now focuses on state-level politics and government, as well as breaking news. Dave plays on the world's best-worst softball team, Chico's Bail Bonds. He can be reached via email at dmistich@wvpublic.org and you can follow him on Twitter @davemistich.

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