Justice appoints Justice lobbyist for vacant state senate seat
West Virginia State Senator Richard Ojeda resigned earlier this week to run for President. Yesterday, Governor Justice appointed his replacement. According to the Logan Banner's Dylan Vidovich via the Charleston Gazette-Mail:
Gov. Jim Justice, shortly after receiving a list of three possible replacements for former state Sen. Richard Ojeda, made a quick decision Thursday, selecting Paul Hardesty, a lobbyist whose clients include several companies owned by the Justice family, to serve the remainder of the term.
Who is Paul Hardesty?
Hardesty, who lives in Holden, is a registered lobbyist at the Legislature whose clients include The Greenbrier resort and other companies owned by the Justice family.
According to a lobbyist directory, Hardesty lobbies for: Alliance Coal LLC; Altria Client Services LLC; Appalachian Outpost; Blackhawk Mining LLC; BrickStreet Mutual Insurance Co.; Centene Corp.; Chapmanville Pharmacy; the Contractors Association of West Virginia; Contura Energy; Cornerstone Minerals LLC; Coronado Global Resouces; The Greenbrier; Harts Pharmacy; Hatfield McCoy Regional Recreation Authority; James C. Justice Companies Inc.; Lexington Coal; LKQ Corp.; Man Pharmacy; Marathon Petroleum Corporation; MedExpress Urgent Care Inc.; Mission Coal Co.; Natural Resource Partners LP; Oceana Pharmacy; Peerless Block Co.; Pepsico; Petroplus Properties; Republic Services Inc.; the Retailers Association of West Virginia; Southern Coal Corp.; The Thrasher Group Inc.; Tyler Mountain Water Co.; and W.W. Grainger Inc.
That's an impressive group! He should fit right in.
And let's not forget the Democrats
Justice's choice came from a list of three names submitted by the 7th Senate District Democratic Executive Committee and his appointment appears to have been embraced by the Senate's Democrats. As Metro News reported earlier today:
Senate Minority Leader Roman Prezioso, D-Marion, said he intends to work with Hardesty just as he would anyone else in the caucus. Prezioso welcomed Hardesty to the Senate during Friday morning’s floor session, eliciting a standing ovation.
Professional courtesy, I'm sure.
Nothing about this in the morning Wheeling paper
Here is the most recent AP report:
West Virginia Gov. picks family’s lobbyist for Senate seat