'Thankful' McKinley looks past partisan political drama | News, Sports, Jobs – Martins Ferry Times Leader


Nov 24, 2021
WHEELING — U.S. Congressman David McKinley highlighted the many blessings for which West Virginians should be thankful, adding that he has no doubt his controversial vote in support of the bipartisan infrastructure bill was the right thing to do.
“Over 11 years of being in Congress — being your representative, I’ve never had the chance to vote on an infrastructure bill,” McKinley, R-W.Va., told members of the Wheeling Rotary Club on Tuesday. “We never had a chance to vote. Finally this year, coming from the Senate — a bipartisan bill — written by people I trust.”
McKinley, a Wheeling native, commended Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., and Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., for their role in moving the legislation forward. When the bill came to the House, McKinley was one of 13 Republicans who voted to support it and tip the scales toward its passage.
The 13 congresspeople have since taken heat from other GOP lawmakers, constituents and even former President Donald Trump, who described the bill as a “terrible Democrat socialist infrastructure plan.” Many members who voted outside of party lines in support of the plan have recently seen their offices flooded with unsavory phone calls and emails about it. Some — including McKinley — have even received death threats.
“I have no qualms about having voted for it,” McKinley said. “Yes, we’ve had the death threats. My wife has been threatened, and I can go on. It was the right thing to do, and I have no qualms about it.”
On Tuesday, McKinley remained unwavering in his stance about the bill, and that $6 billion will now be coming to West Virginia to help with vital infrastructure projects.
“So I’m going to play party politics and vote ‘no’? Ain’t gonna happen,” he said Tuesday. “I’m voting for West Virginia, and I did it. Now what I’m hoping is that we’re going to start to see the benefits from it — how it’s going to help us.”
McKinley said money in the infrastructure bill will first be sent to Charleston, then it will be distributed on a “competitive basis.” Areas of the state that are hurting for clean water and broadband internet services will be among those high on the priority list.
McKinley said the infrastructure funding will help foster growth and give future generations a better chance to grow.
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