Anne Jordan was a contributing editor to GOVERNING.E-mail: email@example.com
Football players are well known for starting to celebrate a touchdown before they actually cross the goal line. Occasionally, they get tripped up, lose the ball and wind up looking pretty foolish. In the political realm, the equivalent embarrassment occurs when a candidate delivers a victory speech prematurely on election night.
But in the wee hours of this morning, West Virginia Governor Joe Manchin experienced the ultimate precipitate nightmare: He admittedly "got swept up in the celebration" over a report that 12 trapped coal miners had been rescued alive, which had not been confirmed and turned out to be wrong.
The Charleston Daily Mail and other news media quote the governor as lamenting a "tremendous miscommunication." Ironically, Manchin knows firsthand the anxiety and uncertainty that the miners' families and friends felt following an underground explosion early Monday. His uncle was among the 78 men who died in a similar mine disaster in 1968.
"I never thought I would go through anything that bad again," he told Good Morning America. "And I have. It's just excruciating pain. There is nothing that can be done or said that will make this situation better."
Written and compiled by staff writers and editors, GOVERNING View is an on-the-ground, and sometimes behind-the-scenes, look at the topics we're covering in print and online. From notes on what's up in statehouses, county courthouses and city halls, to encounters with people, places and things, GOVERNING View is a window into the side of state and local government you don't always see.