West Virginia Democratic Party

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia - View original article

West Virginia Democratic Party
ChairmanLarry Puccio
HeadquartersCharleston, West Virginia
IdeologyAmerican Liberalism
Progressivism
Center-left
National affiliationDemocratic Party
ColorsBlue
United States Senate delegation
2 / 2
United States House of Representatives delegation
1 / 3
Executive offices
5 / 6
West Virginia Senate
24 / 34
West Virginia House of Delegates
54 / 100
Website
www.wvdemocrats.com
 
Jump to: navigation, search
West Virginia Democratic Party
ChairmanLarry Puccio
HeadquartersCharleston, West Virginia
IdeologyAmerican Liberalism
Progressivism
Center-left
National affiliationDemocratic Party
ColorsBlue
United States Senate delegation
2 / 2
United States House of Representatives delegation
1 / 3
Executive offices
5 / 6
West Virginia Senate
24 / 34
West Virginia House of Delegates
54 / 100
Website
www.wvdemocrats.com

The West Virginia Democratic Party is the state level chapter of the United States Democratic Party in the state of West Virginia.

History[edit]

The state of West Virginia granted itself statehood after its people, through a state constitutional convention, became a free state and broke away from the slave holding state of Virginia in 1861 during the first year of the Civil War. Article IV of the U.S. Constitution requires consent of the newly formed state, the original state, and Congress. Since the Virginian government was ruled illegitimate as it was a member of the Confederate States of America, no approval was required and after Congressional consent, self-statehood was gained and political party formation prospered.[1]

The West Virginia Democratic Party was started as a coalition of Pro-Union Democrats, Pro-Confederate Democrats, and former members of the Whig Party. After 1872, its political dominance flourished when restrictions that disenfranchised former Confederates were struck from the state constitution.[2]

West Virginia Democrats in government[edit]

The West Virginia Democratic Party controls all but one (Attorney General) statewide executive offices and holds a slim majority in the West Virginia House of Delegates and a supermajority in the West Virginia Senate. Democrats hold both of the state's U.S. Senate seats and one of the state's three U.S. House seats.

Governor of West Virginia, Earl Ray Tomblin
State
Federal

Democratic electorate[edit]

Democratic and Republican parties have dominated the American political scene for close to two centuries. One party often overpowers the other and controls the government as a whole. In these times of dominance, the party in power holds a majority of seats at national and state levels and commands the loyalty of the electorate for an extended period of time. In West Virginia, the Republican/ Union supporting party held political power from 1863 to 1872. The Democrats took power in the 1872 elections and held it until 1896. Republicans once again had control in 1872 until 1932. During the Great Depression, The Democratic Party began its dominance and continues to control most of the state and local offices to present day.[3] Although, it should be noted that the West Virginia Republican Party had its most successful election since 1928 during the 2012 cycle where it enjoyed a gain of 11 House of Delegates members, 3 Senators, an Attorney General and another Supreme Court Justice.

The scope of Democratic dominance in West Virginia[edit]

To measure success of a party, one looks at the extent and depth of the party's electoral success. Out of all the 121 terms of statewide office that have been regularly elected since 1932, only seven were lost by the Democrats. Three of those seven terms were won by the same person, Arch A. Moore Jr. Moore Jr. is the only Republican candidate from West Virginia to fare well in state and national office races. Since 1930, Democrats have held majorities in both chambers of the West Virginia Legislature.[4]

West Virginia voters almost always prefer the Democratic candidate for national offices. They have sent only two Republicans to the U.S. Senate, one in 1942 and the other in 1956. Out of the 168 contests for seats in the U.S. House of Representatives between 1932 and 1994, Republicans have won just twenty-three times. Six of those victories were secured by Arch A. Moore Jr. The people have voted for a Democratic President in every election except 1956, 1972, and 1984.[5] Since the 2000 election however, Republican candidates for president have enjoyed electoral victories in the state.

Today's party organization[edit]

The party organization is governed by the West Virginia State Democratic Executive Committee. This committee comprises its leadership. The Chairman is Larry Puccio and Derek Scarbro serves as the Executive Director.[6]

The party platform[edit]

Every presidential election year, the West Virginia Democrats issue their party platform. The platform declares what the party believes in, supports, and recognizes. The platform reflects what the party would like to see accomplished after the election from the candidates whom the party supports to win respective offices. Many issues are covered in the most recent 2008 platform from the party's website. They include:[7]

Education[edit]

Economy[edit]

Employee rights[edit]
Creating a level playing field[edit]

Law and order[edit]

Good government[edit]

Environment[edit]

Health and social issues[edit]

Children and families[edit]
Seniors[edit]
Health education[edit]

Educating citizens about healthy eating habits and wellness programs.

Veterans[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ west Virginia Statehood http://www.wvculture.org/history/statehoo.html
  2. ^ West Virginia para 1-2 http://www.wvencyclopedia.org/articles/1875
  3. ^ Brisbin,Richard. West Virginia Politics and Government. University of Nebraska Press, 1996. p.34 para 3.
  4. ^ Brisbin,Richard. West Virginia Politics and Government. University of Nebraska Press, 1996. p.35 para 1.
  5. ^ Brisbin,Richard. West Virginia Politics and Government. University of Nebraska Press, 1996. p.35 para 2.
  6. ^ http://wvdemocrats.com/contact.html
  7. ^ http://wvdemocrats.com/aboutus.html
  8. ^ http://wvdemocrats.com/aboutus.html

External links[edit]