For all Virginians

Ed Gillespie Spends Two Days on the Road in Coal Country

Ed spent Monday and Tuesday in Southwest Virginia talking to voters about important issues in the region!

Ed kicked off the trip with a cup of coffee at the Campus Drive-In in Gate City with Scott County GOP Chairman Terry Sivert.

Next, Lee County Sheriff Gary Parsons hosted an engaging question and answer session in Pennington Gap at Ruby’s Steakhouse. It was great seeing Mayor Larry Holbrook, Vice Mayor Gary McElyea and other friends.

Afterward, Ed stopped by Wise Primary School to read to Mrs. Johnson’s second grade class. These bright students helped solve “The Case of the Missing Donut”!

Following the Wise Primary School visit, Ed joined Wise County Sheriff Ronnie Oaks, Commonwealth’s Attorney Chuck Slemp, Delegate Terry Kilgore and many others for a lunch question and answer session at the Inn at Wise.

After lunch, Ed dropped by Pathfinders Outdoor Adventures – an outdoor recreation retailer in Norton – and learned a lot about the economic impact of outdoor recreation on Southwest Virginia.This business is owned by Mark and Carol Caruso from Norton. Mark serves on the city council and Carol serves on the city school board.

Next, Ed stopped by Optafuels – a biomaterials processor and manufacturer in Norton – to hear about their exciting job creation and economic development potential.

Ed enjoyed meeting the hardworking employees of Frontier Secure – a Wise County business – and discussing the impact of his tax cut on the regional economy.

Last, Ed toured downtown Big Stone Gap with Commonwealth’s Attorney Chuck Slemp and had a great conversation with numerous Wise County citizens.

On Tuesday, Ed visited Paramount Deep Mine 41 in the heart of Dickenson County. While Ed was underground in the mine – the McAuliffe-Northam Administration doubled-down on the failed Obama-era anti-entry policies by announcing executive action to regulate carbon and move to a “trade-ready” policy.


After the mine tour, Ed stressed the harmful consequences this policy could have for Virginia families, businesses and our long-term objectives for economic growth alongside Senator Ben Chafin (R-Russell) and Delegate Will Morefield (R-Tazewell).

Ed finished out the Southwest swing by visiting CGI – a major employer in Russell County.

Like each region in the Commonwealth, Southwest Virginia has unique challenges and opportunities. Visiting all Virginia regions is important to Ed as he continues to develop policies and a plan to get Virginia growing again with across-the-board policy reforms that cover taxes, regulation, education, transportation, healthcare and public safety. Ed Gillespie will put forward a serious and substantive vision for ALL Virginians to create jobs, raise take-home pay and help people lift themselves out of poverty.

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