Senator Jay Rockefeller proud of Toyota plant - WOWK 13 Charleston, Huntington WV News, Weather, Sports

Senator Jay Rockefeller proud of Toyota plant

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While many people are wondering who will replace Senator Jay Rockefeller, who announced his plans to not seek a sixth term, other people are wondering how his departure will affect job creation in the state.

At a press conference, Rockefeller said one of his proudest moments involved bringing Toyota to the state.

The Putnam County based plant employs more than 1,000 people.

Rockefeller said it was not easy getting the company to invest more than $1 billion.

"I went to Japan 10 times before the Toyota people started to take it seriously," he said.

With 50 years of public service under his belt, Rockefeller has his fair share of supporters and critics.

"I live in a rural area, gravel road, and Mason County won't do anything to it. We had big holes in the road so I wrote him a letter, and he got on them and they fixed the road better then it had ever been fixed. But it's getting that way again, I'm going to send him another one," said Lonnie Workman.

On the conservative front, people said they hope his retirement will open doors so that their values can be more represented in a state that typically votes blue.

"Putting more power back into the hands of the people and listening to the public. You feel like our voices aren't heard enough. I certainly don't feel like I've been represented well," said Randy Warner.

Rockefeller said his strong Japanese relationships will only help whoever wins the 2014 election.