Following up on its earlier overview of the race, The Associated Press sets the stage for the primary contest between U.S. Rep. Alan Mollohan, D-1st, and state Sen. Mike Oliverio, D-Monongalia.
"The congressman has campaigned on his ability to deliver federal funds to the 20-county district that borders Maryland, Ohio and Pennsylvania and includes West Virginia University in Morgantown," the article said. But he also "voted for Obama's health care law, which he considers a landmark achievement. That vote cost him long-standing support from the National Right to Life and its West Virginia division, which fear the law will allow federal dollars for abortion. Both have endorsed Oliverio."
Oliverio, meanwhile, "continues to criticize Mollohan over past ethics allegations," and "while Mollohan ultimately opposed the proposed limits on such greenhouse gases a carbon released by burning coal, Oliverio says it was too little, too late," AP reports.
Other factors that did not make it into the final version:
- AP estimates that Mollohan can't spend $120,000 in his campaign fund until the general election - if he gets there - because it came from donors who have already maxed out their primary election contribution limit."
- Mollohan siphoned out another $115,000 over the course of the election cycle to repay previous loans to his campaign.
- While Mollohan's internal poll of April 21-22 showed him up by 9 percentage points, it also showed a 19 percent undecided despite a 94% name recognition rate.
- Only a slight majority of those undecideds were favorable toward the incumbent, 51% to 28%.
- Mollohan has raised $121,000 in last-minute contributions, while Oliverio has attracted $103,900.
- At least a dozen people who gave $500 or more to Mollohan in 2006 have contributed to Oliverio instead this year.
- Oliverio has received more than $30,000 from people who have also contributed to one (or more) of the Republicans running for the 1st District nomination.