The new Republican majority in the state Senate and House of Delegates has been sailing along, for the most part. They quickly passed the repeal of the alternative fuels law, advanced legal reforms, and have started to lay the groundwork on charter schools.

Credit goes to House Speaker Tim Armstead, Senate President Bill Cole and their leadership teams for their preparation. They have not wasted any time in the early stages of the 60-day session.

However, there are hints of possible storm clouds ahead.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch Carmichael (R-Jackson) is adamant about pushing legislation making West Virginia a right-to-work state. Carmichael has long lobbied for limiting the power of unions in the workplace and he wants to take advantage of the new majority to see it through this year.

Labor leaders will fight right-to-work to the last man. AFL-CIO president Kenny Perdue, a normally affable soul, was so infuriated when right-to-work lawmakers said it was an issue of freedom, he told the Daily Mail’s Joel Ebert the Republicans were “F- – – – – –  liars.” (Perdue later apologized.)

Over on the House side, Republicans are said to be unsure whether to have a bitter fight over right-to-work. Some want to use their new majority to tackle every significant issue that’s been pent up for years, while others prefer to pick their battles.

There’s a similar scenario with prevailing wage, the law that requires the state’s Labor Commissioner to set the hourly wage rates for works on public projects, like school construction.

Senator Craig Blair (R-Berkeley) believes prevailing wage drives up the cost of labor and increases the cost to taxpayers for public projects. He wants it gone, or at least modified.

That’s another rub for labor and many Democrats. Republicans could probably cobble together the votes to win, but it could be a long, hard slog.

Additionally, Governor Tomblin may not be labor’s best friend, but he’s also reluctant to antagonize. One source said Tomblin would likely veto a right-to-work bill. Legislation eliminating prevailing wage could meet the same fate at the Governor’s desk, unless it’s a compromise proposal that only modifies the statute.

These and other issues still to come this session —abortion, guns, etc.—will indicate whether the new Republican majority will be content with making some progress and finding a safe harbor or sailing headlong in the uncertainties of a storm.

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Comments

  • Faroutofthere

    And screwing up everything in their path. Get what you vote for, West Virginia.

  • Joe

    Rumor has it Robin Capehart wants to be the WVGOP's tax reform advisor. Given his current issues with the ethics commission, perhaps the Republicans should steer clear (lying down with dogs, etc.).

  • doublenut

    Kevin, your years of voting against your living have finally come to the finish line by biting you in the wallet. As a member of the union trades myself here in WV, we have heard the quiet drumbeat of these days coming for a long time. For whatever reasons you always voted for the GOP, and I respect those, you have voted against your own best interests. A study, funded by a Koch brothers grant, by good old WVU right there in Monogahalia County where you live and work, said if prevailing wage was eliminted in WV more roads and schools and other public works projects could be funded because they would not "overpay" teamsters, laborers, pipefitters, boilermakers, ironworkers, etc.. By using cheaper labor more money could go around. Look it up on the WV Chamber of Commerce website. Mr. Steve Roberts of the chamber has been pushing for this for years.

  • Tyler Durden

    I am super impressed with the Republicans

    I support removing Prevailing wage and making WV a Right to Work state.

    I disapprove of charter schools, all funding should be public schools only, if you want something special for your kids pay for it yourself.

  • rick

    Kevin...why are you a Republican?

  • Kevin McMillen

    I've been a Union Bricklayer for over 25 years, I have also voted Republican in those years. What these Republicans had better consider is that 40% of union members generally vote Republican.

    I will guarantee one thing, if any of Monongalia County Representatives vote to repeal prevailing wage, I'll never vote for them again.

    We need to remember that the majority of Americans incomes are protected by law. Even the Representatives who are for repealing prevailing wage, their wages for being Senator or Representaive is protected by law. Perhaps if we cut their wages then we can save some money in WV.

    How about the majority of millionaires out Hollywood? Their income is protected by copyright laws. How about Rush Limbaugh, who is so anti union, even most of his income is protected by copyright laws.

    Our senior citizens incomes are protected by laws, even our lowest earning citizens are protected by Minimum Wage laws.

    Why is it that contruction workers get the brunt all of this?

    It's evident that the lawmakers who are presenting this bill are doing it for their own interests and not the interests of the State.

    Kevin McMillen
    Monongalia County

  • Finney

    Charter schools? West Virginia's answer to lipstick on a pig.

  • here you go again

    Guess who will be going to those high octane public charter schools. Bill Cole's kids, not you suckers who voted for him.

  • FIREGOAT

    I guess the republicans want to give up their chances for a second term.
    Wages go down, but food, electric, water, cable, excet........ Goes up.
    It's hard enough to stay a float as is.
    Labor costs is what the people make. So our avg household income in WV will be even lower.
    We can't pay taxes if we aren't making any money, or buying anything. I'm a Republican, (a poor one), and I don't make prevailing wage. I work for the State and bring home a whooping $35000 a year, and that's with collage.
    And by the time I pay utilities, house, and car payments, along with all the insurances that's required, I don't have anything left.
    ( no boats, 4 wheelers or anything to play with). If government wants to build the middle class, then get the Coast of Living down, so we can spend money on things we want. Don't increase our HARDSHIP.

  • Dante

    You're exactly right Skip. The sad part is the voter's in this state that are affected the most are so (*%^$ they vote Republican..........and against themselves an don't even realize it. It's a shame.

  • Skippy

    Well I guess I could. Should I take the 140 jobs I provide with me?

  • WV Common Tater

    Same old story, Usn's are the victims of those bad folks that live else where and take our money. Maybe if you moved out of state, you could do the same.

  • MENTOR

    is west Virginia university out of state they are buying up mon county guys like beach and Eldon callen are helping them

  • MENTOR

    skippy ur kind have made the poor people of this state wallow inyr peanut butter a mental midget can create better paying jobs in thisstate unless they are thieves im 87 and ive seen the light all my adult life

  • Nate

    I repeat................GREED.

  • worker bee

    HH - you bet I work a lot of hours, and also did when I worked for a large corporation. I also fully understand that I am no trail blazer, but isn't it obvious that every generation owes a debt of gratitude for the groundwork laid by those before? The point I am trying to make is that an individual can succeed on their own merits. It doesn't take a union to achieve success in the workplace, but it does require an opportunity. I want more of those opportunities for WV. It's up to each person to make something of it.

  • worker bee

    poe - I just think it's un-American to require union membership as a condition of employment. I don't deny that unions have served labor well at different times in our nation's history, but largely that time has passed. Workplace safety is part of the culture in most every large corporation today. I've seen it first hand in many Fortune 500 companies. Granted, there are exceptions but isn't that the case with everything in life?
    I also think WV needs to compete for businesses to locate here - we need jobs and the state should help bring those jobs to WV.
    In response to Nate's post above, he just doesn't get it. Businesses will gladly pay top dollar for top talent - valuable employees will make a business successful and more profitable. That is the beauty of the free market - if you aren't happy with what you make, go somewhere else and prove your worth.
    Let's not forget the millions of American workers - both blue and white collar - who have raised families and retired comfortable from employment or investment in "big business". To paint all "big business" as an enemy to the working man is ridiculous.

  • ViennaGuy

    - Free civics lesson for you. Perhaps you would have never earned a high school diploma (assuming you did) if these bozos in Charleston have their way. -

    grumpy,

    For your information, I have a high-school diploma and not one, but two college degrees. Don't preach to me about civics. I know full well how the Electoral College works; I am an advocate for it.

    My point, which you obviously missed, was this:

    wvu999 complaining that Republicans won by default because only 40% of West Virginians turned out to vote is the same as those people who complained that Democrats Clinton and Obama won with less than 50% of Americans turning out to vote in those elections (and I don't see you or wvu999 complaining about Clinton or Obama winning). The fact remains that the only votes which count are the ones which are cast; it doesn't matter how many turn out to vote, and there is no such thing as "winning by default" in contested races, which is what we had. Is that clear enough for you?

    It's funny how the people who complain about 40% of West Virginians voting in this past election certainly didn't complain in years past when the Democrats won elections with similar turnouts. I wonder why. Would you like to expound on that?

    If wvu999 wants to blame someone for the Republicans taking control of the Legislature, he has no further to look than the Democratic Party - not "Citizens United," not "the Koch brothers," not "big business," not "big pharma," not "Wall Street," not "a vast right-wing conspiracy." Remember, the Democrats controlled the Legislature for over 80 years in spite of those groups.

    Sour grapes, indeed.

  • sandman

    Patriotism....the last refuge of a scoundrel!!

  • sandman

    Thanks for the clarification on Citizens United...so now instead of contributing to a candidate's campaign they can directly advocate
    with no dollar limit the candidate they want to be elected. So free speach in this country has been reduced to whoever has the most money gets the free speach.

  • Skippy

    I'd classify a man who has a $3 mil jet parked in his garage as wealthy. I'd guess all those out of state corporate CEO's who shipped money in this state by the boatload to pervert the election process for the sole purpose of increasing their profits are wealthy. I'd even say a delegate who drives a Maserati has significant wealth......
    Who do you think benefits most from all these bills the republican lead legislature is chomping at the bit to pass....WV's middle class?

  • The Answer

    Moderation for what?????

  • The Answer

    I say let these morons have at it .
    Then they can pay all the taxes to support the state when everyone that wants to make a decent living leaves.
    Only one's left will be those morons in Charleston and the pill head welfare crowd .

  • 2XLPatriot

    3x; That's because the working age folks have moved out of state. Ding-a-ling.

  • WVs Last Patriot

    The only ones complaining are those who have profited from West Virginia's welfare state status... All you Robert Byrd loving liberals, George Soros feet kissers, this is all your doing.

  • Albert Alan Potock

    Wealthy? In WV? That us what maybe 3 people?

  • Nate

    Big business has shown for the past 200 years or more, they will do everything they possibly can to make sure they will not have to pay their employees a penny more than the have to. One thing is to blame for the way they treat employees....GREED. And no one can deny. And for the live of me I don't understand why anybody would take up for big business.

  • susanf1218

    NOT still being part of Virginia was mistake #1. And it has been downhill ever since.

  • Hop's Sweater

    Hoppy is not a journalist. He is a hack for the right. JR must be so proud.

  • sandman

    You can't fix stupid...buddy you should actually research some of this stuff before you spew it out!!

  • grumpy ole' man

    Have you heard of a little thing called the electoral college??? The president is not elected by popular votes, in fact they mean nothing as the electors are actually free in most states to cast their votes for whoever they choose.

    Free civics lesson for you. Perhaps you would have never earned a high school diploma (assuming you did) if these bozos in Charleston have their way.

  • Skippy

    And that the next round of attacks will likely include rolling back next year's increase in minimum wage! Can't wait to see when Sen. cole rolls out his changes to the auto franchise laws. Just like the automobile "as-is" bill he had his lackey Carmichael introduce, you want to wager who that will benefit?

  • grumpy ole' man

    @Skippy--

    Truer words have never been spoken. When this bunch of inexperienced, and very young legislators are finished doing the bidding of the Koch Brothers & Chamber of Commerce no one in WV will be making over minimum wage.

    Poverty wages brought to you by the letter "R"

  • Skippy

    Republicans In the legislature are waging a war on working people. Right to work, prevailing wage, tort reform, charter schools, vouchers...all benefit the wealthy at the expense of the working class who make up the tax base in WV. Let's not create jobs to expand the tax base, let's kill it off. Brilliant strategy Mr Armstead (corporate oil and gas lawyer), Mr. Carmichael (Frontier corporate stooge) and Mr. Cole ( rich auto dealer)

  • Why

    Why sell out to big business by making this a right to work state? Do you really want the fast talking city slickers of wall street to own you and your family? Sure in right to work states there are more jobs at higher pay, but at what cost? The cost of living increases in right to work states which basically negates the increase in wage. The ppl on wall street make a wad. Do you really want all of these mountains to be covered in shopping malls? There are other ways to bring jobs to this state, we need companies with morals, not the kind who make their right to work states look like an episode of survivor where ppl backstab to get to the top. I know a lot of ppl who work in right to work states and they to live paycheck to paycheck!

  • Disgusted

    Hoppy: I used to think that you were a right winger but at least tried to show both sides of a story. Unfortunately, you have gone all Fox News now and completely create a false impression of the truth.

    You are not a journalist. You have become an entertainer.

  • The bookman

    His comment was brought forward by a degrading comment by Poe. If he had claimed to have succeeded in business by building on the success and knowledge of others, he would have been torn down for receiving a subsidy or that "he really didn't build that." But no need to belabor the point.

    Have a great weekend, hops!

  • Hop'sHip

    I apologize for being the spoiler. I smiled too in reading worker bee's account as to how he did it alone and lecturing the rest of us to do likewise. Of course that was his story and I was taken by his lack of humility. My preference is for successful people who believe as Sir Isaac Newton did that "if I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants."

  • The bookman

    In fact, higher rent is an indication of greater prosperity and earnings.

  • The bookman

    Hops,

    Why ruin a great lesson? I read worker bee's post, and smiled. Although not exactly the same story, his is very similar to mine. There is an enormous sense of accomplishment when you achieve a self determined success. It isn't for everyone, and I hope worker bee doesn't have to log the hours I do. But if he does, it will be because that is what was necessary to secure success.

    Congratulations Worker Bee. I applaud your achievement of the American Dream, and may you inspire others to claim their share of it.

  • ViennaGuy

    - If the Governor vetos the Right-to-Work law, then the natural gas cracker to be located near Parkersburg will be history. They will re-locate the project to Ohio. Sad but true -

    According to who? You? Ohio does not have a right-to-work law, either.

  • Raging Moderate

    Theoretically at least, the advantage of right-to-work is more jobs, but it seems to me the disadvantage of right-to-work is more lower paying jobs without benefits.

  • ViennaGuy

    Exactly, 3x. More people working = more tax revenue.

  • ViennaGuy

    The fact that rent in a right-to-work state is higher than rent in a not right-to-work state doesn't prove anything. There is a lot more to take into consideration.

  • poe

    Actually, little big wig, I did build a business from scratch through hard work and I employ 13 people. I feel very accomplished. I did it in a state that isn't right to work, WV. Like I said earlier, your sales pitch for right to work is exactly that. You and I both apparently became successful without right to work, so why do you think we need it?

  • 3xpatriot

    Less than 50% employed is due to the age of our state residents, dork!

  • Hop'sHip

    Do you work 90 hours a week, worker bee? If not, you are a slacker by the standards required to qualify as a self-made man here.

  • worker bee

    Not really... just a life long, tax paying WV resident who turned an entry level job into a very comfortable living. BTW - I earned every penny of it through hard work and making myself valuable to my employers. My wife and I saved money when we could, didn't live beyond our means, and over time finally had enough financial freedom to start our own business. We did it all on our own - no unions to protect our wage or welfare along the way. You should try it some time! I promise, it doesn't hurt. You might actually feel a sense of accomplishment and be thankful for the opportunities you were able to take advantage of.

  • Aaron

    I told you Hop, I haven't posted on the sports page in at least 2 weeks, maybe longer.

  • poe

    Sounds like a sales pitch from a little big wig that wants to come to wv and get rich off the working class.

  • Hop'sHip

    Hillboy: And don't forget about the skilled, well-educated but relatively low cost labor market women provided, especially in education and healthcare, because they were effectively cut off from more lucrative professions.

  • worker bee

    Every American should have the choice to stand on their own merits and either succeed or fail on their own.
    Earn your keep... I've know guys with a high school education who were making $150K+ year over year because they were worth it. Their employer (fortune 500 company) gladly paid this because they were valuable.
    I see a lot of posters railing against big business... the same big businesses that gave us smart phones, automobiles, reliable power generation, etc, etc, etc. Every business needs good employees to succeed in today's economy - and with that comes opportunities for good jobs and a chance to lead a successful life based upon your own merit. What are you afraid of when you slam a pro-business agenda at the Capitol? That others will succeed while you wallow in self pity?

  • Hop'sHip

    What is your definition of Terrorist, Shadow? Maybe we should appoint you as Minister of Truth and allow YOU to decide what statistics and definitions are acceptable. We could call it our Shadow government.

  • Aaron

    My favorite quote from last year was from UMWA President Cecil Roberts who claimed Democrats have forgotten about union members who must take a shower before bed. This is a change over past decades and makes my point. Republicans are missing a golden opportunity in my humble opinion.

    As to what you want to see, I'm 49 years old and in that time, I can honestly say I don't think Republicans stand any more for "our money, our children's money, their futures, education, immigration, our borders or less government" then Democrats do. In my opinion, they still want to spend the money, just on different things than Democrats do.

  • Shadow

    Labor force statistics have been skewed for a long time as they have no way to measure who has exhausted their time and then stopped looking. All they seem to measure is how many are drawing unemployment and how many are new. Those on Food Stamps should be easy to count. The question there is: should they be on stamps? Cost of living is one where they have not included some very important item so the rate will no be rising. Then there is the definition of: Terrorist!

  • Hop'sHip

    I'm sorry, but is this the original Aaron or some wannabe Aaron? The person posting as Aaron on the sports side is all over the place and often makes no sense. The person posting as Aaron here makes too much sense to be the original Aaron. I wish they would go back to the policy requiring unique posting monikers.

  • Tired of dems

    Hey Aaron... If what you say was true why do the dems pander to the unions like they do? And since we're talking about where the dems money comes from.. Ever hear of George Soros, warren Buffet, Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Steven Spielberg yada yada yada... That's the pot calling the kettle black there Aaron! Am I crazy about the Republicans?only in the fact that they're not democrats....we just need conservative values regarding our money, our children's money, their futures, education, immigration, our borders and on and on. Smaller government and less taxes are the things I wanna see. Hardwork and the success and values that come from hard work is what I wanna see a lot more of in this country...not handouts and victims!

  • poe

    I'm not 100% sure, but if you look up the rent in right to work states, you will see what I mean. I know that a lot of ppl who live around me pay average of 600 mo rent and yet if you drive to the neighboring right to work state the rent averages 1000.00 up.

  • matt miller

    I assume it will take more than a few minutes to organize a vote or multiple votes on overriding a veto, so I was thinking it would have to be a few more days than that... or maybe not. Just didn't know if the republicans had thought about a deadline for themselves for any legislation that they think could be vetoed.

  • FungoJoe

    It'd be nice to see some fundamental changes made to the way the legislature operates. It should ban the lobbyists, civic groups, and labor organizations from the Capitol hallways during the 60-day session. This should be time reserved for the peoples business. Then during the late spring when the weather is nicer, have a session with legislators in attendance for the civic groups and so forth. The circus that surrounds the 60-day session should be eliminated if we are serious about getting the peoples business done. There is a time and place for everything. But these two should not be held at the same time.

  • 2XLPatriot

    And yet, less than 50% of WV's population is employed and the Governor is once again, dipping into the rainy day fund to the tune of 44 million dollars to fix the budget shortfall. Not to mention the ever increasing exodus of our young people to other states to find employment. Wal mart is the states biggest employer and we know they pay top wages to keep the middle class strong and reduce poverty amongst our unemployed and under priviledged.

  • ViennaGuy

    You're assuming that West Virginia will return to its blue-state past after just two years. At this point in time, I see no evidence of that happening, in part because West Virginia has been trending Republican for many years. Further, the idea that "blue-collar" and "Democrat" go hand-in-hand is no longer true. If it was true, the South would be a Democrat stronghold given the growth of blue-collar manufacturing jobs in that region.

  • kc61

    Sad to say that Aaron is totally correct regarding finding enough clean and sober non-union workers. What a commentary from our state. This issue has been ignored for too long - look around you as you go about your day, it's slapping us in the face.

  • ViennaGuy

    wvu,

    Less that 50% of America voted for Bill Clinton - twice - so America didn't really elect him; he won by default.

    Less than 50% of America voted for Barack Obama - twice - so America didn't really elect him; he won by default.

    Do you see how empty that argument is?

  • Hillboy

    Let's require a drug test for everyone who gets a farm subsidy too, even if they're a Congressman or Congresswoman.

  • ViennaGuy

    Clarksburg Pete,

    Study the corruption - and court trials/convictions - in southern West Virginia Democratic politics and then preach to me about how the Republicans are the party of corruption.

    One party is just as guilty as the other.

  • Hillboy

    I agree that the labor conditions of the 60s and 70s are not coming back. Two contributing factors that aren't generally considered are women joining the workforce and the impact of undocumented workers. I am not advocating returning to a mostly all-male workforce but women joining the workforce did help turn it from a labor seller's market to a labor buyer's market. Gone are the days when a middle-class family can survive comfortably on the income of one adult with a high-school education.

    Similarly, with the influx of undocumented workers. Many people think Democrats are soft on illegal immigration because they represent potential future voters. However, there is also a segment of the Republican party that likes illegal immigration because it keeps labor costs low.

  • ViennaGuy

    Please explain how right-to-work results in a doubling of people's rent.

  • Ted Jr.

    I agree, but as you can see from others (below) no one talks about real problems: only politics.

    "A survey of businesses would show that "poor business climate" is one of several reasons they do not want to come to West Virginia and is far down the line from others, including: geography, typography, weak economy, poor quality workforce, corrupt government, weak infrastructure, lack of capital, high maintenance costs, poor climate, substandard health care system, culture (guns, intolerant religion and welfare psychology), marginal to poor schools, and difficulty in traversing the state.

    Or, as one said, "I would not want to live there, so why would I locate there?"

    Good luck, if you think changes to unions and prevailing wage will make any difference."

  • AX MAN

    It is the one's that will not come in now.

  • Hop'sHip

    Also Shadow, where do those statistics about labor force participation and food stamp usage come from? If they are from government sources, should we assume they are lies?

  • Hop'sHip

    No I have never used that term or thought that way. I never met either and probably never will. So I have no strong feelings about them.

  • Aaron

    Why would you go and ruing a perfectly good conversation with inaccurate statements. Citizens United nothing more than affirm Dartmouth College v. Woodward, the 6-1 Supreme Court decision in which Chief Justice John Marshall upheld the sanctity of a contract and is the primary case that established corporate personahood, a concept that was used in Citizens United "remove the previous ban on corporations and organizations using their treasury funds for direct advocacy. These groups were freed to expressly endorse or call to vote for or against specific candidates, actions that were previously prohibited."

    There was nothing in the decision that "affected the 1907 Tillman Act's ban on corporate campaign donations (as the Court noted explicitly in its decision), nor the prohibition on foreign corporate donations to American campaigns,nor did it concern campaign contribution limits. The Citizens United decision did not disturb prohibitions on corporate contributions to candidates, and it did not address whether the government could regulate contributions to groups that make independent expenditures."

    It should also be noted that Unions received the same benefits corporations did invalidating the claim that big business has obtained an unfair advantage.

  • Poe

    If right to work passes, rent will double, the wealthy out of state city slickers will end up owning everything.

  • WV Proud

    While some things In WV need changed to increase jobs, right to work is not what we need. Companies with zero morals are what operates in right to work states. I believe we can mold this state into what works for us. I don't think we should sell out who we are and end up being Virginia. Have you ever looked at the property taxes in right to work states?

  • Wirerowe

    Hops sorry

  • Wirerowe

    Hoos you are right that right to work is not the only consideration weather income taxes are considerations as well. I think that you had it backwards as right to work states are creating more jobs. This is a dramatically different world than in the 60s and 70s. Union gave unskilled workers very good paying jobs. That is never going to come back, what has hurt the middle class and the working people is the transition to a global economy. While over time there is some leveling of wage rates, there are still billions of folks out there that have generations of abject poverty that are prepared to work. But the greatest impact on middle class wages has been technology information technology, automation and mechanization. This means investors can get higher returns over time with lower labor costs. unions can not or have not done anything about it. In my opinion Labor unions busted themselves as they have generally not been swift enough to react to a rapidly changing world and change their message their focus with responding to those changes. And maybe nothing would have mattered.

  • Anthony

    Tomblin's highest priority is bringing industry to this state.

    Tomblin may veto the right to work bill if it comes to his desk.

    My head is going to explode.

  • robert kerns

    And who is going to take away the corrupt fund raising arm of the republican party...big business, who by the way contributes many more millions than unions do?
    Since the Citizens United ruling by the Supreme Court this has went totally out of control and is the reason the repubs scored so big in the last election!

  • robert kerns

    Now its more like the titanic!!

  • robert kerns

    Tim Armstead...hmmm..a
    corporate lawyer that onced worked for Arch Moore...I'm sure he has the best interest of working people of WV at heart...not!! At best right to work might bring a few low paying no benifit jobs to WV. It's amazing that the few decent union jobs left in the state seem to be such a problem for the republicans...more likely they are pushing the national agenda of the republican party...which has always been to promote business at the expense of working people!

  • NoLove4Unions

    Shale gas was in its infancy during most of that time period. Check out the coal exportation figures from Appalachia and WV to Europe and China.
    There was one thing that WV produced and exported that outranked coal. It was college educated grads.

  • CaptainQ

    Tom wv, I think the WV GOP should take a lesson from Obama's first two years in office. Obama used every ounce of political clout he had (and a few dirty tricks) to get ObamaCare passed. After that deed was done, it got a LOT harder for Obama to get the rest of his agenda through, even with the Dem controlled Congress! The same thing could happen to the WV Republican if they use every ounce of the political 'goodwill' they got from the 2014 elections on splintering, divisive issues instead of grabbing up all the 'easier' victories they can.

    Those who do not learn from the mistakes of history are doomed to repeat them.

  • Aaron

    Who are these companies that will come in if Right to Work is implemented?

  • FungoJoe

    TD and the liberal loons want us to go the route of California and New York. High taxes, high over government regulation, welfare states, and TAXPAYING citizens fleeing by the tens of thousands.
    Most of us would like for WV to emulate Texas. Low taxes, right-to-work state, a natural resource backed economy, and TAXPAYING citizens (workers) flocking to Texas by the tens of thousands.

  • CaptainQ

    Not if Earl Ray plays 'stallball' long enough. All he has to do is leave the bills sit on his desk till the maximum legal time is up, and THEN veto them. If he times it right, the regular session will end BEFORE the GOP can rally the 'troops' for the override. The Governor will gamble that the Republican leadership won't have the stomach to call a special session just to override vetoed bills.

    Don't forget, the WV Dems are experts at political 'dirty pool', they've had over 80+ years practice at it to maintain their control on this state! (Ok, to be fair, the WV GOP knows some 'dirty pool tricks' too) You better believe Governor Tomblin has already been schooled by the WV Democratic Party leadership on how to 'wait it out' to make sure the bills THEY want vetoed WILL REMAIN VETOED!

  • Aaron

    No, I'm saying the opposite which is that many of the laborers that work for fly by night construction outfits and are willing to work the jobs, hours and conditions of the industry wouldn't do it for the wages that druggies will accept. Not all are but the ones that aren't, generally don't stay with those type or construction firms, the generally migrate to outfits that pay better, provide better benefits and safer working conditions.

  • Aaron

    Bear in mind, I'm not saying your analysis is wrong and I'm certainly not siding with Republicans, particularly on these two issues because quite frankly I think they are wrong and wasting valuable legislative session time that could be spent on critical issues that stand a chance of aiding West Virginia but I couldn't help but indirectly point out that much of the growth you highlight comes under the guidance of conservative Democrats that many (even if you haven't) liberal Democrats have referred to as DINO's.

  • Hop'sHip

    Coal is probably part of it as well as shale gas. But I don't think that is the whole story. But by the name you choose, I know you are pretty sure.

  • Aaron

    I wonder one thing HH.

    Have you ever called or thought of either Joe Manchin or Earl Ray Tomblin as DINO's?

  • Aaron

    You can't find enough sober non-union construction workers to build the cracker regardless of which state it's built in.

  • Hop'sHip

    Where did you get your statistics, Wire? If they are from a government source, THEY ARE LIES! Just ask Shadow. I have no doubt that businesses prefer non RTW states to RTW states. It reduces their labor costs. And of course jobs will follow businesses. But I'm not sure that explains all or most of your migration story. Do you think weather might have something to do with it? But if reducing labor costs has been the main driver, isn't that similar to what has driven jobs overseas? Do you argue that this has been a good thing for American workers? It has been a good thing for investors, I agree.

  • Aaron

    Do you favor drug testing executives who receive corporate welfare?

  • FungoJoe

    Drug addiction? How about funding their drug dealing? It is much worse than you think.
    Medicaid funds much of the prescription pill epidemic problem in every state that has one.

  • Aaron

    I have no idea. I though neither Purdue or Carmichael made a valid point during the debate yesterday. Both espoused the same tired talking points and when put on the spot, both fumbled over their words. Honestly, I don't see how it's anything more than a perception issue and the way I see it, Republicans are killing themselves by attacking unions like this.

    In my mind, many working men and women feel that Democrats have abandoned them and instead of Republicans taking up the cause of the working man and bringing that segment into their fold, their carrying water for big business.

    The thing is, I don't think they have to. I've talked to enough business owners who have no problem with union wages, they're problem is with much of the mentality that comes with union employees. Instead of saying "we can cut cost by eliminating union wages" Republicans would be better off saying "we don't mind union wages but we need to address the mentality of many union workers" and start working directly with unions on what separates the two sides.

  • FungoJoe

    Hoppy,
    It is sunny days and blue skies at the state capitol for that full sail.
    Under the Democrats, WV has been sailing on the SS Minnow with the Skipper and Gilligan under the helm.
    It is a new day, indeed!!

  • NoLove4Unions

    And what led to that growth in '04-'13?
    COAL!!!
    The exportation of coal led the way.

  • Hop'sHip

    Well I can't argue with that. Is everything put out by business also a lie?

  • Wirerowe

    Truth

  • Shadow

    The Scientific Approach is to test the hypothesis. Do it and see the results, including Food Stamps.

  • Wirerowe

    In 1970 28.5 percent of the population lived in right to work states. In 2008 40% of the population lived in right to work states, only one state Oklahoma changed to right to work during that period. Between 2000 and 2008 there was a net migration of 4,700,000 from non right to work to right to work states. These movements would likely have continued over the last seven years and the first number would surely have grown with Michigan and Indiana shifting to right to work since 2008.

  • NoLove4Unions

    If the Governor vetos the Right-to-Work law, then the natural gas cracker to be located near Parkersburg will be history. They will re-locate the project to Ohio.
    Sad but true. And who could blame them.
    Gov. ERT looking like an all typical liberal democrat here, killing jobs.
    While the deomcrats are busy handing out food stamps, our young college educated students go elsewhere to work, leaving behind the lazy and uninitiated.

  • Shadow

    Are you saying that the skilled, qualified workers are all druggies?

  • J the C

    company stooge!

  • Shadow

    Another part of that question is: if it is not needed to prevent a closed shop, why are they fighting it?

  • Shadow

    Who believes anything put out by this Government? I certainly don't. They rig the statistics to aid their agenda. Their lips are moving.

  • Joe

    Since 2005, West Virginia has seen more than $22 billion in new business investments. Investments from 30 countries has created more than 26,000 jobs in West Virginia.

  • Joe

    In the past decade, West Virginia has seen more than $22 billion in new business investments. Investments from 30 countries has created more than 26,000 jobs in West Virginia. Not too shabby.

  • Clarksburg Pete

    Y'all crack me up!!! Look at the campaign finance reports of these folks and you will see the same names and organizations have donated to both. These same people and organizations will want the same accommodations, as in the past. If you think the good old boy network has been demolished, you are dead wrong. It just changed some of the players.
    Also, for those if you who forget, the last Governor convicted of corruption was a REPUBLICAN. Y'all need to stop throwing stones in your glass houses.

  • Uncle Cecil

    Democrat definition of bipartisan: Go along with our view of the world.

    Democrat view of obstructionist: Do not go along with our view of the world.

  • DWM

    +1

  • DWM

    Why should employees have to join the union to work in a union shop?

    Unions are nothing more than a fundraising arm of the Democratic Party. If an employee is opposed to what they do with his money he should have the right and freedom to withdraw from the union.

    It is about personal freedom.

  • ViennaGuy

    You don't want to talk about 'bipartisanship.' For 80+ years, the Democrats defined 'bipartisanship' as "you vote for our bill and we'll call it bipartisanship; otherwise, you get left out."

  • Hop'sHip

    I pretty much accept that the voters have spoken and the Republicans have a mandate to pursue their agenda in the state, but I do question the premise that the state was not making any progress. So I went to the Bureau of Economic Analysis and looked at per capita real GDP growth over the last decade for which we had information - 2004-2013. Growth for the whole nation for that period was 4.5%; for Mississippi it was 5.4%; for WV it was 12.5%. I chose Mississippi for comparison because it was a state that has struggled like WV and it went from Democratic control to Republican control right at the beginning of this period, interestingly in similar fashion - with a Senator changing party affiliation after the election to give Republicans control. By the way, Mississippi is a RTW state, constitutionally.

  • Jack

    No, it's just the beginning of a new bunch of good ole boys and their agendas!

  • Joe

    The state has done pretty well over the past several decades, considering the limited resources we have as a small state. Aerospace, chemical, biometrics and forensics, automotive and energy, all have grown and succeeded. One of the few state governments with no debt, financially solid, good credit rating. There is much to be proud of about this state.

  • Aaron

    Hoppy, I'm curious, why didn't you address Mr. Perdue's contention that right to work is not needed because federal law already prevents closed shops? If that's the case, why do we need right to work legislation?

  • The bookman

    That would be our challenge, as stated above.

  • Mike

    Right to work will do three things...
    It will lower the union membership by probably more than half. Given the opportunity, their "members" would keep the union dues they pay to go to work in their own pockets. That's great for them and their families.

    Right-to-work would create a more business-friendly environment and look more inviting to potential businesses looking at our great State as a potential business location. Think Toyota...I'm sure there are a lot of folks in this state that would love to have an opportunity to have a high paying manufacturing job.

    Lastly, right-to-work would take away the giant, political fundraising arm of the Democratic Party....think about that people..taking a portion of a hardworking man or woman's income to fund a corrupt political system that benefits only the people at the top of the union food chain. Like Richie Trumca...what's his annual salary...277,486.00 ...
    Do any of you strong, hardworking union men and women make 277,486.00 annually? I don't think so... But Richie does... And since he's the union president does HE EVEN PAY DUES???
    Right-to-work all the way everyday!!

  • Aaron

    In dealing with the construction industry for 3 years now, I can state rather emphatically that if you truly want to lower cost of construction, the only way to do it is to eliminate the certification of drug testing, not the prevailing wage law. Skilled, qualified construction workers will not work for the wages many believe the market will bear.

  • Aaron

    I couldn't agree more which is what concerns me about the legislature taking up this action now. Neither issue is of great importance so why spend valuable time on either? It's a farce as far as I'm concerned and the way it looks not, infrastructure is going to suffer the same fate under Cole and Armstead as they did under Kessler and Miley.

  • Ed

    You need some serious prayer, son. I hope you get it from somewhere. There still may be some hope for you.

  • Aaron

    Is it the end or merely a change in who the good ole boys are?

  • Aaron

    I don't know of any road in WV that is built without federal dollars.

  • Aaron

    When I returned to school in 2009, one of my assignments was an argumentative analysis. The instructions was to pick a topic and either prove or disprove it. My first topic was prevailing wages. I was going to write an essay bemoaning the ills of prevailing wages and how much they drive up public cost. I started doing my research and couldn't find any unbiased supporting data to either prove or disprove the statement.

    When I got into a job in which I deal with the construction industry on a daily basis, I thought I would get my answer. I have. Had I the paper to do again today, through direct interviews and public records I could find enough information to come to a conclusion but it would not support my initial agreement with the statement. Instead I would write an essay that states prevailing wages, while they do drive up the cost on some projects, they do not do so significantly and certainly not to the tune of 40%.

    One of the first cases I would cite is construction of a DOH building in Charleston. The construction firm awarded the project does both private and public work and as that was the first public project I quoted them, in getting the PO signed I ask specifically if they had to increase pay to meet prevailing wage law since this was public work. The response I got was that in order to get the type of skilled, dependable DRUG FREE employees they required for their work, their employees were paid wages that met prevailing wage demands.

    I understand the market argument and I'm sure someone could find a contractor that would do the work for less but other than wondering about the quality of the work, my experience has been that they couldn't certify that they drug test their work force because if they did, they wouldn't have a work force. If you do have something that states otherwise, I would be interested in reading it.

  • The bookman

    Well at least you got the talking points correct that time!

  • jeremy

    +100000000000

  • Kandi Montini

    "As a business if I don't want to deal with a union, I can move elsewhere."

    The idea is to keep and bring jobs to WV not get rid of them.

    "As an employee if I don't want to be part of a union, I can find work elsewhere."

    Again, the idea is to get people working, not limit the jobs available to them.

    Prevailing wage agreed, however does a "flag man or woman" really have a special set of skills requiring a higher rate of pay? Seriously?

  • wvu999

    Less than 40% of WV voted so WVians didn't really elect this people. They won by default

  • rick

    Jobs...Jobs...Jobs....it was to be all about work in WV remember? Look at some of the bills these nuts have introduced....just the folks to take us right into the 19th century.

  • The bookman

    The 40% number was reported in an earlier story on this issue. I've not seen that number contested by anyone, including you, until now. Do your own research, and I will stand corrected. I'm sure you can find many numbers out there, and even some that say prevailing wage saves the state money. But I don't think anyone would buy that argument. Good luck!

  • Mike

    To all you d---a--- dems.... Look around you... this state has been run by your ilk for 90 years and what do we have to show for. Lets see... The lowest number of people of working age working ...50% of you sit while the rest of us work! 49th in personal income, # 1 in heart disease per capita, # 2 in diabetes per capita, 1 in 3 people on welfare and food stamps...I could go on and on. If the dems are so damn great then why are the 10 largest cities in this country with populations over 200,000 that have 39% or less of their population UNDER THE POVERTY LEVEL ALL RUN BY DEMOCRATS???
    What about your WAR ON POVERTY??? 50 years later and trillions of dollars spent and THERE ARE MORE PEOPLE,MORE CHILDREN IN POVERTY THAN EVER BEFORE!! Yea...you dems have really showed what you can do...RUN OUR COUNTRY IN THE GROUND....here's what you dems need to do ...
    SIT DOWN. SHUT YOU IGNORANT MOUTHS AND WATCH US FIX WHAT YOU'VE SCREWED UP. Hard work will get you anything you want in life....not having your government give it to you. Remember this you bleeding heart dems...
    THE GOVERNMENT CAN'T GIVE YOU ANYTHING UNTIL THEY TAKE IT FROM SOMONE ELSE!!!! TAKE YOUR TIRED OLD SAVE THE WORLD SONG AND DANCE ON DOWN THE ROAD CAUSE IT AIN'T GONNA WORK HERE NO MORE!

  • Kandi Montini

    Amen to that! They have been given the mandate by the WV voters and they need to stay strong, grow the set that some of them need, and use it, including right to work. No person should be "forced", and that is the key problem, into joining a union if they don't want to. If people wish to join a union then they should have that right as well. That's the "freedom" part Carmichael is talking about.

  • Kandi Montini

    15 days before the end of the session. If the governor doesn't sign the bill into law within 15 days it automatically becomes law.

  • Bill

    A survey of businesses would show that "poor business climate" is one of several reasons they do not want to come to West Virginia and is far down the line from others, including: geography, typography, weak economy, poor quality workforce, corrupt government, weak infrastructure, lack of capital, high maintenance costs, poor climate, substandard health care system, culture (guns, intolerant religion and welfare psychology), marginal to poor schools, and difficulty in traversing the state.

    Or, as one said, "I would not want to live there, so why would I locate there?"

    Good luck, if you think changes to unions and prevailing wage will make any difference.

  • 2XLPatriot

    Wow! Talk about 2 faced responses on here! It wasn't long ago, I remember reading all the lefty's on here bashing conservatives for speaking out against democrats and their politics. Now, the true face of liberalism is on display in full force. Tolerance indeed.

    If anyone thinks the dems could do a better job, why in the hell didn't they do anything for over 80 years? They lined the pockets of their buddies, good ole boys and family members with state money and fluffed the unions. We see where our state stands nationally with all that hard, for The People, work they did for us, now don't we?

    Quit whining and cussing. Your party line couldn't stand the test and The People kicked them to the curb.

  • Tom m.

    Union busting republicans are showing their true colors,red. They want do do away with everything including health care for over 20,000 people in this state. Their campaign was just smoking mirrors and you can forget about them helping the middle class of this state.

  • Edward

    A Republican is a Republican. All from the same mold.

  • The bookman

    Morrisey's a carpetbagger from Jersey, right? He is in the middle of his first term, right? Good ole boy in the AG's office. Good one! Get the talking points in line next time Edward.

  • Edward

    Have you looked in the Attorney General's office lately? Or the Republican legislature's hiring of Morrisey's gang? There's plenty of Good Ole Boys in the GOP to fill a dump truck! Get real bookman!

  • Edward

    The word bipartisanship isn't in the Republican dictionary. But the word obstructionist is on the first page.

  • The bookman

    It's the end of comfort and Good Ole Boy politics in WV. We should be diligent to ensure those same mistakes are not repeated, and cronyism is rooted out where ever it exists. Sour grapes indeed!

  • The bookman

    I don't think RTW will unlock the economic powerhouse of Pocahontas County. And like the people in Highland, Bath and other non I-81 corridor counties in SW VA, I don't think they wish it upon themselves. But like the rest of VA, many counties in WV would benefit and become attractive to manufacturing resulting from such a pro business package of which RTW is a part.

    As a multi-generation WVian with four wonderful children, I refuse to accept your prognosis that we can never be better than we are, or have been. I owe it to them to do everything I can to make a way forward for them.

  • ViennaGuy

    I frankly don't see a right-to-work bill becoming state law.

    I would like to see some changes to the prevailing-wage law, however.

  • Douglass Cool

    THE WEST VIRGINIA VOTERS AND NON-VOTERS PUT THIS REPUBLICAN ""BOIL"" ON OUR A*S NOT WE WILL JUST HAVE TO SIT ON IT....

  • jss

    Book, citation needed on your claim that prevailing wage increases project costs by 40%. Do not reference a single paper, do some homework from your mansion on the mountain.

  • ViennaGuy

    Wow, AJ, what a way to reach across the aisle and get things done! Such bipartisanship! Or sour grapes, one.

  • AJ

    You first Tiny Tim.

  • AJ

    K

  • AJ

    Republicans are more like F----- C---------S. You keep doin you GOP so that every single Dem/Independent can vote you Animal House bullies OUT.

  • WVworker

    I'll give it to 2016. Republicans will be out.

  • Mike

    "..the Republicans were “F- – – – – – liars.” Yea, he had it right. What else is new?

  • Steve

    Big labor and unions had better get on board with some of these changes, because next election we are going to tack 10 more Republicans onto the majorities in the legislature - and you probably want to cut some deals while you still have a little bit of clout.

  • Matt Miller

    What will be the last practical day to pass legislation that would allow the opportunity for the legislature to vote to override a gubernatorial veto?

  • TD

    Our economic situation will not change, right to work or not. If you look at the border counties of western and southwestern Virginia (Bath, Highland, Allegheny and those further south/west) you will see they are very much like our state. There is little economic activity there because it's difficult to get in and out. The only businesses that will locate here will do so for our resources, timber/gas/coal.

    Maybe other industries like the cracker plant can develop along the Ohio river, maybe the new potato farming effort being pushed by Walt Helmick is a good idea, maybe growing hemp is a good idea, maybe we can find a way to become a more productive agriculture state but if you think WV is going to improve in any measurable way economically I'm afraid you're mistaken.

    My point is when I look to south I see myriad problems most worse than the rest of the country.

  • Bruiser

    I am not sure if the right to work law is necessary. Union membership is an all time low and just not sure if this measure is necessary because it will infuriate many and we want them to continue to be the majority. They are addressing some major issues and have supported their actions, but right to work is not one of them.

  • Noodle

    We elected them to turn this 50th place state around, let's hope they don't " pick their battles" and just plow through every red tape hurtle that's benn holding us back for years.

    Keep up the good work!

  • wvman75

    They got elected to tackle the tough issues and move our state forward for a change. Who are they battling on right to work, charter schools, prevailing wage, and other budgetary issues? Unions. They've had democrats in their pocket and have been in the pockets of the people for long enough.

  • Tim

    You can find work elsewhere? I'm not convinced of that. Maybe in another state perhaps?

  • Tim

    After hearing statistics from other states, I'm not convinced that the drug issue is a big enough of a problem to justify the new legislation and cost.

    Maybe what we should do instead is find a way to help people step up and out of the welfare state rather than just handing it out left and right.

  • Wirerowe

    Td these are relevant statistics as are statistics that show more job growth and economic growth in right to work states. The most telling statistic is the population migration from non right to work statesto right to work states. Right to work is no magic bullet as are any of other reforms being discussed. Collectively as Bookman says they will make West Virginia better positioned for new investment and jobs.

  • Dennis

    Let us not overlook drug testing for welfare recipients. Let us make sure the money going out is not funding someone's drug addiction.

  • Bill Hill

    I was once an advocate of right to work, but, I not certain anymore. It is not that I support unions, I don't. What bothers me about the legislature enacting right to work is this. What right has the legislature to interfere on either side, labor or business.

    As an employee if I don't want to be part of a union, I can find work elsewhere. As a business if I don't want to deal with a union, I can move elsewhere.

    The prevailing wage is a no brainer in my opinion. Do away with it. Any construction company worth its salt will pay around the level of the prevailing wage to get and keep good employees.

    We rely far to much on government to make decisions for us or to give us what we want with out taking responsibility for ourselves.

  • The bookman

    You seek to view these two issues in a narrow view, and find their singular benefit on the overall job market, and here specifically, WV contractors. There is a bigger picture involving the overall health of our economy. Labor costs on state funded projects are estimated to increase the cost of those projects by 40% due to prevailing wage constraints.

    In a state that you admit is in dire need of supporting infrastructure funds that will encourage the expansion of business, how can you argue that paying higher labor cost than markets would otherwise find legitimate is in our best interest?

  • The bookman

    Who would you have us emulate, TD? Given our identified strengths and weaknesses, what types of economic engines give us the best hope for improving our economy in the near term? Geographically, demographically, and culturally, we are a southern state. Our edge over our southern neighbors is that we are closer to the East Coast population centers than everyone else save Virginia. We can compete immediately on that level.

    What is your vision of WV's economic future, and is it realistically achievable in the near term?

  • Wirerowe

    On Route 35 changing the prevailing wage law would not matter if there are federal dollars in the project as Davis Bacon laws would still apply. The office building with only state money if bid out at market rather than prevailing wages would cost less and taxpayer should benefit by having their tax dollars go further. This would allow more infrastructure to be built with the same amount of dollars and make it more attractive to operate in a state where your tax dollars go further and you have more infrastructure

  • Just saying...

    Don't forget, the Legislature can override the Governor's veto with a simple majority.

  • Olan

    Here is what I have seen so far. On the right to work law the labor leader has called the bill's proponents dagum. story tellers. Presumably because the proponents are running around lying that West Vieginia is a closed shop and those workers in the majority and miniotiy in an election and those joining after an election do not have the right to work for a unionized company and not join the union and not pay dues, the labor leaders and posters are saying they already have these rights. If so there should be no problem codifying those rights and everybody get behind the bill.on the prevailing wage law leaders have acknowledged that they are prepared to address the two most objectionable parts of the current law. Namely to change the process where wages are skewed much higher than market wages and not having a threshold that exempts small projects in poor counties and nor profits which in some case includes voluntary labor. If the trades would agree to changes in those parts of the law and agree not to picket and defame contractors not covered by the law then I would be in favor of reform of the law rather than repeal. The trial lawyers have carried the water for defense lawyers for decades. Any use of the state law to expand markets and upward earning potential for trial lawyers provides an equal benefit to defense lawyers because amying requires a yang.the current Justice reform package while it may hurt lawyers earnings makes the laws fairer and more just.

  • Wowbagger

    Sounds like the Republicans have hit a nerve and Mr Perdue has no leverage as he has stupidly only supported one party thinking that nothing ever changes in West Virginia. Scott Walker has faired pretty well in blue state Wisconsin with the bold approach. If these measures pass and the state starts to attract new business the Republicans will be rewarded.

    Also, these are policy issues so a simple majority can overturn the Governor's veto. Yet another mistake Democrats stupidly made during their 80+ years in power!

  • Hey hey, ho ho

    Prevailing wage has got to go!

  • TD

    Bookie, you talk about joining our neighbors to the south as if that's a good thing. Google a map showing "percentage of low income students in public schools", or map showing "where fewest people have health insurance", "map showing which states receive more than they pay in to federal gov't"". I could rattle off ten more of these but I don't know why anyone would want to emulate the states of the south. If I were trying to achieve success I would look to regions where people are doing better not worse.

  • Aaron

    When the state puts out to bid a new building at the capitol, there will be maybe a dozen companies place bids to construct it. Of those companies, most are based in WV including BBL Carlton, G and G Builders and Paramount Builders.

    When Wal Mart builds a new store, they hire a general contractor from outside the state who comes here and beats down local contractors to perform the work.

    When Route 35 lets, there will be maybe 3 companies bid it. 2 of those have a presence in WV.

    I'm sorry but I fail to see how passing these laws will promote the business of WV. Can you elaborate?

  • Tom wv

    If there afraid to tackle some hard issues because of 2016 then they won't tackle it in 2016 either. Better to get the tuff stuff now and then next year go for the lower fruit.

  • The bookman

    Why fight the most contentious battles just before the election, especially if you believe in the legislation? Go with the momentum. Get it done, and move on to the revenue and spending issues that are the daunting elephant in the room. The State of WV has waited too long to join the rest of our neighbors to the South in pushing a pro growth agenda. Time's a wastin'!

  • CaptainQ

    The WV GOP needs to be careful now. Fighting too many battles at once could cause them to lose their House and Senate majorities in 2016 when the 'shadow of Obama' will be just a bad memory. Better to, as I heard the term used on Hoppy's show yesterday, grab all the 'low hanging fruit' first and save some of the bigger political battles for next year's session.

    I know there's over 80+ years of legislative frustration for WV Republicans here, but if they're not careful, they could wind up in the minority again quickly. Right to work, charter schools and abortion are among a number of issues that the GOP could 'win the battle but lose the war' on via Earl Ray's veto stamp. To use a football analogy, the GOP has the ball, and they're driving towards the 'end zone.' The last thing they need to do is 'fumble the ball' this close to scoring. Better to 'kick some easy field goals' than to go for the 'quick touchdowns' and lose the game in the process.

  • The bookman

    Independently RTW and repeal of prevailing wage won't make a difference, but collectively the pro business package being offered up, of which RTW and prevailing wage are a part, by Republicans will make a difference. Of course, at some point, like gambling, the impact on attracting jobs will be less as our neighbors continue to advance their own pro business agenda.

  • Aaron

    Neither issue does anything substantive to move the states business along. The same companies will complete the same projects with the same employees for the same money. I would much rather see our representatives working on a method to fund infrastructure construction than trying to reduce the cost at the expense of the employees who actually build our infrastructure.

  • THE MEB

    I disagree. Republicans need to keep the hammer down. The unions like the Democratic party in this state are on the skids. The voters didn't vote the Republicans, finally, in to be careful and don't sway the boat, they voted them in because they didn't like what the Democrats have done to their state in the last 80 or so years. They finally woke up to see that if WV doesn't change it's tactics then it will stay 49th or 50th in all the things that matter to people and businesses that are considering moving in or back.

  • Jeff

    Republicans are doing exactly what Democrats claimed they would if they were elected. They need to realize that West Vurginia still strongly supports unions and these social issues are going to cause them to only keep their majority for two years if they're not careful. West Virginia is still predominately hard working blue collar workers and if they start showing these pro Wall Street agendas like they have in Washington, West Virginians will kick them out on their asses!