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By Erich Reimer

There’s been an endless series of articles, essays, books, and re-search about the 2016 election. However I felt even now there’s still been a lot of misunderstanding and omission in the discourse, particularly regarding what really fueled then-candidate Donald Trump’s rise and why his ascendance flabbergasted the chattering class at nearly every turn.

Even now we still see the half of the nation that voted for, or has a favorable opinion of, now-President Trump misunderstood and vilified. The 2016 election, in which up until the final results the Huffington Post polls aggregator predicted Hillary Clinton to have a 98% percent chance of winning, shook many out of their daze.

A good number of those who previously dismissed Trump supporters have now begun trying to reach out to conservatives or make expeditions out of the cosmopolitan centers and into the American heartland, but there still remains a big gulf.

Lee Hamilton

By Lee Hamilton

Russia and the United States have never stopped viewing each other with suspicion and hostility.

In times past, representatives of the two countries would meet, engage in exchanges and cooperate in reaching significant agreements, but the underlying relationship remained fraught with tensions.

Today, neither wants large-scale conflict, but our relationship is as bad as at any time since the Cold War.

Hostile rhetoric has escalated. Diplomacy has stalled. Arms control discussions have stopped. Hopes are vanishing that the two countries that control over 90 percent of the world’s nuclear warheads will be able to make deeper cuts in our arsenals. Instead, both sides are updating their weapons systems, and both sides are increasing military spending.

Recently, each country has escalated the confrontation by expelling scores of the other’s diplomats in response to various grievances.

Some say we are seeing a return to the Cold War.

After winning 77 percent of the vote in a tightly controlled election on March 18, Putin’s power at home is basically unchecked, but he presides over a country with diminished global reach and a sluggish economy.

He boasts that Russia has nuclear weapons that are “invincible” -- capable of outsmarting U.S. defenses and reaching any target.

By Camille Howard

Congratulations to all those who were elected in the primary or who will have their names on the general election ballot in November.

It was good to see so many names on the ballot for local offices. It reinforces the fact that people do care what happens in Grant County and are willing to make the sacrifice to step into public office.

Yes, they get paid to hold that office, but most people don’t want to work for free. And holding a public office is work.

There is no 9 to 5 when you’re a public official. People call you at home, stop you on the street, in the grocery store or at a ballgame to talk about their concerns or tell you what’s wrong in this county. All the candidates knew that to be the case if they were to be elected.

And hopefully, they expect you to talk to them. No changes can be made if the difficulties are unknown. Take time to go to meetings, submit your ideas or volunteer to help. Change cannot be affected by a just few people.

Thanks, also, to all who took advantage of the privilege to vote and made their wishes known at the polls. In that respect, we are all winners.

By U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.)

The past year and a half was a time of important accomplishments that will help improve the lives of West Virginians. When Congress passed tax reform legislation at the end of last year, we promised it would help workers and families keep more of their hard-earned money. We promised it would help our businesses compete, reinvest in our economy, and pass benefits down to their employees. We promised it would create new opportunities for growth in our communities. Now, those promises are being fulfilled.

As I have traveled across the state in recent months, I’ve seen small businesses able to expand and hire more employees. I’ve heard stories about families who are better able to invest in their children’s education. I’ve even seen how extra money in their paychecks have helped some individuals donate more to local charities and community priorities.

But it’s important that we continue working together to find new solutions that will help

move our state forward. That’s why I recently launched a new initiative called “Share Your Stories.”

I created this initiative because you know better than anyone else how what we are doing in Washington are benefiting you and your neighbors. I want to hear what’s working and what’s not. I want to hear about the positive changes you are seeing in your communities, as well as the changes you still want to see.

Since launching “Share Your Stories,” I’ve already heard from quite a few West Virginians. Take Herbert for an example. Herbert is a local retired public school teacher who wrote to me expressing his excitement about the recently passed tax reform legislation. He explained how he and his wife, his daughter, and other retirees throughout the state are receiving more money in their paychecks and shared that many individuals who were previously jobless have now found new jobs thanks to tax reform. This is great news, and I am so glad to hear that Herbert’s friends and family are already seeing the benefits of pro-growth reforms. Better yet? I am confident that this is just the beginning.

I look forward to hearing more of these stories. And more importantly, I look forward to taking your stories and your experiences back to Washing- ton and delivering even more reforms that will positively impacts your lives.

Share your stories with me by visiting my “Share Your Stories” webpage: www.capito.senate.gov/ShareYourStories or connect with me on social media by following me on Twitter (@SenCapito), Facebook (@ SenShelley), or Instagram (@ SenCapito).

And if you have limited internet access, contact one of my offices by mail or phone:

Washington, DC
172 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510 Phone: 202-224-6472

Charleston, WV
500 Virginia Street East Suite 950
Charleston, WV 25301 Phone: 304-347-5372

Martinsburg, WV
300 Foxcroft Avenue Suite 202A Martinsburg, WV 25401 Phone: 304-262-9285

Morgantown, WV
48 Donley Street
Suite 504
Morgantown, WV 26501 Phone: 304-292-2310

Editor - Camille Howard;
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Circulation - Mary Simmons

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