Women rule and other quick hits on the election

By The West Virginia Record | May 15, 2008


Some quick thoughts after Tuesday's primary election:

Women Rule: Hillary Clinton trounces Barack Obama. Margaret Workman leads the ticket for Supreme Court. Natalie Tennant easily wins the Democratic nomination for Secretary of State. The second district congressional race in November will match two women: Incumbent Shelley Moore Capito and Anne Barth.

Obama's WV Woes: Probable Democratic Presidential nominee Barack Obama has a lot of ground to make up in West Virginia. Obama got just over 91,000 votes yesterday. That's only 11 percent of the total number of registered Democrats and Independents.

Spike Nailed: Incumbent State Supreme Court Justice Spike Maynard was the biggest casualty of the election. Maynard finished a distant third behind Workman and Menis Ketchum in the race for the two Democratic nominations to the high court. Clearly the controversy over Maynard's vacation time with Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship cost him dearly.

Lots of Love for Manchin and Rockefeller: I hear a lot of grousing about Gov. Manchin and Sen. Jay Rockefeller, but it wasn't reflected at the polls. Granted, each had only nominal opposition, but Manchin still captured 75 percent of the vote and Rockefeller 77 percent. Those are numbers politicians usually only dream about.

Greear Gears Up: Dan Greear may be the hardest working man in politics. The Charleston lawyer had little money, but still beat Hiram Lewis in the race for Republican nomination for Attorney General even though Lewis started with much higher name recognition. Greear will not let incumbent AG Darrell McGraw have a minutes rest before November.

Nail Biter: House Judiciary Committee Chairwoman Carrie Webster nearly lost her re-nomination bid. Webster didn't know until the final precincts were in that she had fought off a strong challenge by Meshea Poore by just 118 votes in Kanawha County's 31st delegate district.

Not Just a Pretty Face: Former Miss West Virginia Tiffany Lawrence got a successful start in politics yesterday. Lawrence won the Democratic nomination for the House of Delegates in Jefferson County's 58th delegate district.

Quick Count: The decisions by the Democratic and Republican parties to choose their delegates to the national conventions at state gatherings saved a lot of time for vote counters last night. Previously, Primary Elections were especially cumbersome because the ballots included long lists of names of delegate candidates.

More Choices, Please: John McCain became the Republican Party's presumptive Presidential nominee some time back, but West Virginia Republicans still exercised their right to support somebody else. Nearly one in four GOP voters voted for someone other than McCain. Six other Republican Presidential candidates were on the ballot.

Kercheval is vice president of operations for MetroNews and the host of Talkline, which has become a signature program of the network.

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