West Virginia GOP Senate Hopeful Says 'Chinaperson' Comment Not Racist, Adds There Are 'Koreanpersons' and 'Africanpersons'

GOP Senate hopeful Don Blankenship, already notorious for his controversial ‘Cocaine Mitch’ ad, defended his use of the word ‘Chinaperson’ to describe the father Secretary of Transport Elaine Chao’s father.

Speaking during a West Virginia GOP senate primary debate hosted by Fox News, Blankenship continued his pointed criticism of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell along with staying unapologetic for using the word to describe Chao's father, who is McConnell's father-in-law.

Related: GOP Senate candidate releases bizarre ad branding Mitch McConnell "Cocaine Mitch"

When asked about his use of the word, Blankenship said: “This idea that calling someone a ‘Chinaperson’ - I mean, I’m an ‘Americanperson’, I don’t see this insuation by the press that there’s something racist about saying ‘a Chinaperson’,” adding “some people are ‘Koreanpersons’ and some of them are ‘Africanpersons’, there’s not any slander there.”

Asked by the host how using the term to refer to Chao’s father, would affect his ability to get along with “a key decider in infrastructure projects” that could affect the state, , Blankenship replied “I’m not going to D.C. to get along so that won’t be a failure cause I don’t intend to get along, I intend to make sure that we make a difference.”

According to a New York Times profile of Blankenship, he himself mulled gaining Chinese citizenship and is engaged to marry a woman who was born in China. Blankenship was previously the CEO of the Massey Energy Company.

He spent a year in federal prison after being found guilty of conspiracy to violate mine safety standards. 29 people died in an explosion at a mine run by Massey Energy.

Blankenship made national headlines when he referred to McConnell as ‘Cocaine Mitch’ in an ad. The hosts of Fox’s primary debate mentioned that he had attempted to bring hats with the slogan ‘Ditch Mitch’ onto the show.