Write-in candidate Paugh pitches W.Va. sovereignty

As Uncle Sam tightens his wallet and lets fewer dollars trickle down to the states for highways, Constitution Party gubernatorial hopeful Butch Paugh sees a golden opportunity for West Virginia to turn free enterprise loose and spawn a healthier business climate.

Pastor Butch Paugh

Pastor Butch Paugh

That done, the write-in candidate theorizes, more businesses will invest huge sums in the state, creating more jobs and, in turn, expanding a tax base so that adequate dollars flow into the coffers of the financially strapped Division of Highways.

“We can build the tax base without increasing taxes if we would let the people produce more and not punish them for being a West Virginia citizen,” the Nettie resident told The Register-Herald editorial board.

“Businesses don’t like it here because of the tax structure. You can’t tax people into prosperity. That does not work. When you’re already on the bottom, kicking them again doesn’t work.”

Paugh says the state needs to take a penetrating and comprehensive look at how neighboring Virginia operates with lower taxes and a larger tax base.

“Ask them what we’re doing wrong and how come they’re getting the businesses and we’re not,” he says.

By enlarging the business community, Paugh maintains, the state would actually rake in more money for the general revenue account without raising taxes.

“I don’t know why the state can’t grasp that idea,” he said.

“The solution is, let’s look at the whole picture, find out what we’re doing wrong, correct it, cut back in spending. Some of it’s unnecessary. A lot of it out there is, I guarantee that. I will put money where we need it. Our nation as a whole is falling under a crumbling infrastructure. West Virginia has the same problem. The answer is not more taxes. It’s less taxes, or at least maintain the same. Bring the businesses in, then we’ll see it improve.”

Paugh is a veteran salesman dealing in industrial products, and he pastors two churches, or “fellowships” as he describes them, non-denominational flocks in Huttonsville and Summersville. At one time, he was chaplain of the Mountaineer Militia in Nicholas County.

On another issue, Paugh took no stand on broadband, acknowledging he wasn’t up on the subject.

See original article by Mannix Porterfield at the Register-Herald.

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