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BREAKING: Governor Manchin's legal counsel calls W. Virginia legislators into special session

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July 9, 2010

By Kyle Maichle

CHARLESTON, West Virginia: Just hours after Attorney General Darrell McGraw issued an opinion calling for a special election to replace the late U.S. Senator Robert Byrd, Governor Joe Manchin's legal counsel is calling legislators back into special session[1].

In a statement written by Jonathan Deem, the lead counsel for the Governor stated: "I am advising the Governor, in light of the varying opinions on the succession law, to call a special session of the Legislature next week to address the issue." Deem further stated with the disagreement between the Attorney General and the Secretary State over the law governing special elections, a special session is the only way to resolve the issue[1].

Deem also stressed in his statement that the state could face a lawsuit if the Legislature fails to take action[1]. News reports have indicated that the Republican National Committee could file a lawsuit if no action is taken by the Legislature to ensure a special election on the November 2010 ballot[2].

Governor Manchin did not personally issue a statement as he is in Boston for the weekend at the National Governors Association conference[1]. No date has been announced on when the Legislature will convene for special session[1].

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