Blankenship challenges denial of third-party US Senate bid

August 9, 2018

FILE - In this May 8, 2018, file photo, former Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship speaks to supporters in Charleston, W.Va. Blankenship says he intends to file paperwork to run in the West Virginia’s U.S. Senate race as the Constitution Party's nominee. Blankenship's campaign announced he would file the paperwork Tuesday, July 24, but he doesn’t expect it to be certified and will “vigorously challenge” any denial. (AP Photo/Tyler Evert, File)

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — Former coal executive Don Blankenship has filed a court challenge to a denial of his third-party candidacy application to run in West Virginia’s U.S. Senate race.

Blankenship filed the challenge with the state Supreme Court on Thursday.

Secretary of State Mac Warner last month blocked Blankenship’s bid to run as the Constitution Party’s nominee, based on the state’s “sore loser” law. The law prohibits major party primary candidates who lose from switching to a minor party. Blankenship finished third in the Republican primary.

Blankenship says in a statement the law “is flawed in multiple ways.”

Blankenship is a former CEO of Massey Energy, which owned a mine where a 2010 explosion killed 29 miners. He spent a year in federal prison for violating safety regulations.

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