• U.S. Senate candidate John Raese left before the meeting started. He took one look at Mountain Party candidate Bob Henry Baber, announced that he was "not going to be in the same room with that guy" and promptly left. (Baber had offended Raese in an earlier debate by calling some of his statements "bull----.")
I was kind of disappointed that he left, personally. You never know when John is going to say something outrageous.
• Attorney General Darrell McGraw ignored handshake offers from challenger Patrick Morrisey -- twice. Plus, after one of Morrisey's answers to our questions, McGraw noted that when he was a boy they had a word for certain people -- "motor," which he explained was short for "motor mouth." Later, after another Morrisey answer, McGraw could be heard softly muttering "mo-tor ... mo-tor."
• Morrisey informed me that he wouldn't respond to "gotcha" questions when I asked him when he was admitted to the bar in West Virginia (it was earlier this year, by the way).
• In the surreal ex-pro-wrestler race for the 8th District Senate seat, Democrat Josh Martin, who wrestled under the name "Silver Bullet Chris Sterling," espoused what can be described only as trickle-down economics -- that old Republican favorite.
• We thought it was refreshing when Chris Walters, Martin's Republican opponent, said he would support adding sexual orientation to the state's hate crimes law. Most all GOP candidates say "no" to that one. "It's generational," the youthful Walters explained. (Days later, he recanted, saying he didn't recall the question being asked.)
• Secretary of State challenger Brian Savilla said one of his most memorable accomplishments from his single term in the House of Delegates was his unsuccessful effort to return paddling to our schools.
• Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin disappointed me when he told us "he's not 100 percent convinced" that humans play a role in the warming climate, but at least he didn't call climate change a "hoax," like challenger Bill Maloney did.
• Putnam assessor candidate Peachie Arthur announced that it was a "fluke" that he lost the last election to Sherry Troyer Hayes, who visibly cringed at the remark. When asked to explain, he laughed -- uproariously -- and then said the Obama effect hurt him as a Democrat.
Honestly, doesn't the president have enough to contend with without getting the blame for the Putnam assessor's office going all red-state?Byers is the Gazette's executive editor.