West Virginia 2

Latest Race Updates

As of 1/1/2018 W. Virginia voters - in all elections - will have to present valid identification to poll workers or have another registered voter state under oath that the person is who he or she claims to be.

According to the Charleston Gazette Mail, there are 18 documents that constitute a valid identification defined in the law:

Any state or federal government-issued identification card is a valid document, regardless of whether it has a photo. That includes driver’s licenses and passports, student IDs, Social Security cards, Medicare and Medicaid cards, concealed carry permits, and hunting and fishing licenses.

Some non-government documents are valid forms of identification. They include a bank card, insurance card or a bank statement.

If a voter doesn’t have any of those forms of identification, he or she can bring an adult to attest to his or her identity by signing an affidavit. The adult would have to verify he or she has known the voter for at least six months and provide his or her own valid photo identification.

Robert C. Byrd describing W. Virginia: “It is the most Southern of the Northern; the most Northern of the Southern; the most Eastern of the Western; and the most Western of the Eastern states.

West Virginia's 2nd Congressional District is located in the central portion of the state, spanning from Charleston to Harpers Ferry.   It includes Berkely, Braxton, Calhoun, Clay, Hampshire, Hardy, Jackson, Jefferson, Kanawha, Lewis, Morgan, Pendleton, Putnam, Randolph, Roane, Upshur, and Wirt counties.

Population:  626,469

Ethnicity:  92.3% White, 3.2% Black, 1.7% Hispanic

Unemployment:  9.8%

Median Household income:  $41,260

High School Graduation Rate:  85.5%

College Graduation Rate:  20.1%

Candidates filing date:  January 27, 2018

Primary Election:  May 8, 2018

General Election:  November 6, 2018

Republican incumbent:  Alexander Mooney, first elected in 2014.  The first Hispanic elected to office in W. Virginia, Mooney voted “Yes” to the American Health Care Act, HR1628, modifying the Affordable Care Act.  He voted “Yes” to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, (HR 1).  Mooney has voted 89.8% in line with President Trump.

Democrats running:  Talley Sergent, Aaron Scheinberg, Thomas Payne


Races:  Since we visited W. VA-2, Tom Payne announced his intent to run as a Democrat in that Congressional race, making it a 3-way battle in the primary.  Payne ran for this seat in 2016, but was defeated by Mark Hunt in the Democratic primary.  Payne is a graduate of West Point and a retired General Electric executive.  

W. VA Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, cited in this story, is running for U.S. Senate in 2018.  His primary opponent is U.S. Rep. Evan Jenkins, R-W.Va-3.  Senator Joe Manchin (D-W. VA) is the incumbent.  

The Opioid Crisis:  In October, 2017 President Trump declared the opioid crisis a public health emergency.  The President may choose or not to direct Federal money to the emergency.  To date, there has been no new Federal money allocated for the opioid crisis.  

A Deal with China:  In November, 2017 West Virginia’s Department of Commerce entered into an 84 billion dollar agreement with China Energy Investment Corporation, the world’s largest power company.  The arrangement is said to include shale gas development, underground storage of liquefied natural gas, and chemical manufacturing.  The Charleston Gazette Mail, as of December, 2017, writes that no one knows yet what this will mean for West Virginia. Will there be a new flush of jobs?  Will people move into the state to work in these industries, buying homes, attending schools, giving a new shot of health to the economy?  This is something to watch.  

Blair Mountain:  In 2009 Blair Mountain was listed on the National Register of Historic Places.  Nine months later it was removed.  Under pressure from subsidiaries of two of the United States' largest coal producers - Arch Coal and Massey Energy Company - the U.S. Department of Interior attempted to remove Blair Mountain from the listing.   A coalition of preservation groups including The Sierra Club  attempted to sue to return Blair Mountain’s historic status.  In 2012 a federal district judge ruled the group did have legal standing to sue.  On August 26, 2014, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit voted 2-1 to overturn that ruling, returning the case of the preservationists to the District Court.  

A little more food:  We talk a lot about coal in this show, but farming is also important in W. Virginia, particularly in the 2nd Congressional district.  The first ever Golden Delicious apple fell from a chance seedling on the Mullins Farm in Clay County, W. VA  in 1891.  Pepperoni Rolls, introduced to W. Virginia cuisine by Italian miners, have become the unofficial state recipe.   W. Virginian cooks treasure their cast iron skillets, considered the only vessel in which to bake cornbread.  


Eunice Panetta