New W.Va. AG seeks role in state policy decisions

Associated Press Modified: November 8, 2012 at 6:31 pm •  Published: November 8, 2012
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"That's an issue that rests within the governor and the Legislature to decide," Morrisey said. "But I'd like to be part of that discussion, and plan to be part of that discussion, because I think West Virginia would benefit from someone who's spent a lot of years focusing on health care issues."

Morrisey said the office audit will review office staff, spending and resources. He also addressed concerns raised by McGraw supporters that he will roll back enforcement of consumer protection laws, a major focus of the Democrat's tenure.

"I want to be clear, I don't come into this position and pre-judge how individuals are performing their jobs," Morrisey said. "I know that there's been a lot of good work done by this attorney general's office, some in the area of consumer protection. So I'm not going to throw the whole baby out with the bath water."

But Morrisey also said a top priority is "creating a more favorable, a more predictable and a stable business environment."

Thursday's audience included several GOP operatives who worked on the campaign of Bill Maloney, the Republican who lost to Tomblin on Tuesday. Also on hand were top officials from the West Virginia Coal Association, which endorsed Tomblin's re-election. They applauded Morrisey's pledge to fight federal coal-related regulations.

Morrisey faulted the state for not joining a lawsuit against one such rule, meant to reduce downwind pollution from power plants, and said it hasn't done enough to fight for permits needed by one of West Virginia's largest mountaintop removal mines.

"West Virginia needs to be stronger in these areas," Morrisey said. "Based upon the conversation that I had with Gov. Tomblin's chief of staff, I think that we can develop a collaborative relationship, and that is my goal. I am not going to be someone who takes pot-shots at leaders of the opposing parties because the fact is we need to work together and we may disagree about a couple of things."

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