Brian Savilla: Strengthening election process is a priority
EDITOR'S NOTE: This is one of a series of columns written by candidates in contested races in the Nov. 6 general election.
Having served in the West Virginia House of Delegates, I am now running for secretary of state for West Virginia. I have many goals that will strengthen our elections process, prevent voter fraud, make the licensing process more business friendly, and return integrity and leadership to this executive branch office that has been lacking for the past four years.
I will make obtaining and renewing business licenses more streamlined and less costly. I will listen to the complaints and needs of the people, and I will do what is necessary to make the Secretary of State Office work more efficiently. I will follow the constitutions of the United States and West Virginia. I will set up regional and statewide meetings with the county clerks who have already put their trust in me to be their voice as well as the people's voice in Charleston. I will stop the push by progressives to weaken the most sacred part of our democratic republic -- our vote!
Our current secretary of state has pushed a progressive agenda which can be found online by searching the "Secretary of State Project." It includes pushing for same-day voter registration, Internet voting and other harmful policies to our elections process. Same-day voter registration has zero safeguards other than signing an affidavit which anyone could lie upon and never be caught. Internet voting has already been proven to be a failure after a cartoon character named Bender from the television show "Futurama" was elected to the school board in D.C. The Internet is susceptible to hackers who could manipulate our elections anyway they pleased. As secretary of state, I will oppose same-day voter registration and Internet voting, and I will request the Legislature to pass voter photo ID legislation. Voter ID does not discriminate against anyone nor does it prevent any legal citizen from voting. President Obama made it to where those on Social Security will need photo ID to access a bank account to have their checks direct deposited next year, yet he and Tennant are both fighting against voter ID. You need a photo ID to do nearly everything in society, except vote.
Several decisions made by our current secretary of state have been overturned by the Supreme Court, including decisions relating to the special elections for U.S. Senate and governor, redistricting and allowing a former senator to be illegally on the ballot for state Senate. Her decision was overturned by the lower courts for not allowing free speech by those investigating voter fraud. She allowed several candidates to be placed on the ballot illegally including a felon convicted of voter fraud in Lincoln County. She has also done nothing to prevent the Keith Judd fiasco from happening again. I will propose that we require a minimal number of signatures for those interested in being on our ballot for president. I will additionally request the Legislature to increase the penalties on voter fraud from the slap on the wrist they receive now to the severe penalties stealing our freedom deserves. I will also make the constitutionally correct decisions needed to avoid the troubles she has faced with lawsuits.
Mrs. Tennant unfairly placed the blame on our county clerks for her mistakes, including putting the incorrect number of delegates to the Republican National Convention on the primary ballot. This mistake cost the taxpayers of West Virginia hundreds of thousands of dollars. She also reduced the number of fraud investigators from three to one, forgot the Constitutional requirement of notifying all 55 counties of any constitutional amendments on this year's general ballot, and has most recently gone outside of her duties to go around the county clerks to not only contact voters but to send out ballots to them as well. On top of that, multiple ballots were sent to individuals during this latest of many mistakes.
West Virginia deserves better and I humbly ask for your vote. I will be the public servant and follower of the Constitution this office so desperately needs. Please visit my website at
Brian C. Savilla, a resident of Hurricane, is the Republican candidate for West Virginia secretary of state.