Ex-Con Coal Exec Called Too Extreme by Trump Announces Presidential Bid

Former coal executive Don Blankenship announced that he will run for president as a Constitution Party candidate on Monday, The Hill reports.

Blankenship, who spent a year in prison in connection with the death of 29 coal miners, unsuccessfully ran for a Senate seat in West Virginia last year.

Blankenship took a shot at Trump in his announcement after the president urged voters not to back Blankenship’s candidacy last year.

“President Trump means well, but he simply cannot get it done because he is too busy mending his self-inflicted wounds and tripping over his ego,” Blankenship said before adding that he would “flush the swamp” and “tightly secure our borders and wend welfare and other benefits for those who are not ultimately granted citizenship.”

Blankenship ranted about “China people”:

Blankenship made headlines during his failed Senate bid when he called Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao a “China person.” He also aired a campaign ad claiming the Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell was bribed by his “China family” to create jobs for “China people.”

Blankenship later insisted that he was not racist against Chinese people.

“Races are Negro, white Caucasian, Hispanic, Asian. There’s no mention of a race,” he said.

Even Trump came out against Blankenship:

Despite the coal baron calling himself “Trumpier than Trump,” he did not get Trump’s endorsement in his Senate bid.

Trump compared Blankenship’s candidacy to that of Roy Moore, a Trump-endorsed Alabama Senate candidate who lost after being accused of molesting children.

“To the great people of West Virginia we have, together, a really great chance to keep making a big difference. Problem is, Don Blankenship, currently running for Senate, can’t win the General Election in your State,” Trump wrote last year. “No way! Remember Alabama.”


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