Charleston, West Virginia (AP) —Governor Jim Justice called West Virginia citizens “poor, illiterate, and nervous” after Senator Joe Manchin refused to support President Joe Biden. I sent a message to actress Bette Midler. Buildback Better Act.
The 70-year-old Republican Governor ended Thursday night’s television-traditional Governor’s procedure by lifting an English bulldog and blinking its rear edge toward the camera and crowd.
“Baby dog tells Bette Midler and everyone there: Kiss her Highney,” Justice grinned as people applauded and gave him a standing ovation.
Justice spent more than an hour promoting the state’s achievements, including two recently announced economic development projects.
“Absolutely many people doubted us,” he said. “They never believed in West Virginia …. they told us all the bad jokes in the world.”
The crowd at the House of Delegates gallery included members of the Diet sitting in the gallery, judges of the State Supreme Court, heads of government agencies, and coaches of high school girls basketball team judges.
Not everyone was amused. In a tweet, West Virginia Democrat Shawn Fluharty called the move “confused and under the office.”
“@WVGovernor brought his baby dog and pony show to the state and pulled this stunt out as a bold statement. It was embarrassing and was under the office,” he said. “Jim Justice is habitually lowering the standards of our state. They laugh at us, not with us.”
Democratic Manchin has effectively tanked his party’s signature $ 2 trillion domestic policy initiative, which would have poured billions of dollars into child care, healthcare and other services.
“It’s scary that #JoeManchin, who represents a smaller population than Brooklyn, went to other parts of the United States where he wanted to move forward rather than retreat like his state,” Midler tweeted. “He sold us out. He wants us all to be like his state, West Virginia. Poor, literate, and nervous.”
After receiving the backlash, Midler apologized “to the good people of WVA” for her “explosion” in a follow-up tweet later that day.
The Associated Press sent an email to a Midler spokeswoman on Friday asking for comment.