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W.Va. groups announce child poverty platform

Feb. 26, 2013 @ 11:26 AM

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — West Virginia Democratic legislators joined with children's advocacy groups to kick off the "Our Children, Our Future" campaign to fight child poverty in the state.

Speaking in the Capitol rotunda on Monday, Senate Majority Leader John Unger compared the evils of society to the Death Star from "Star Wars." He said that child poverty was the crucial hub within the Death Star that legislators could attack.

The campaign emphasized expansion of Medicaid in the state. That would insure more than 100,000 additional West Virginians at levels just above the poverty line.

Senate President Jeffrey Kessler said he supported Medicaid expansion, although Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin has yet to announce whether he intends to expand the program.

The campaign also emphasizes child care programs, prison reform and domestic violence.