Republicans are marching West Virginia into the darkest corners of the past. Here are nine examples:
- The last time unions did not have the right to bargain for a union shop was 1947. In 2016, West Virginia Republicans brought that back.
When Delegate Justin Marcum spoke up against union busting, you can hear how working people responded, and how the Republican Speaker of the House tried to shout them down.
- At least as far back as 1891, reasonable regulations of concealed weapons were allowed. We got rid of those last week.
- West Virginia currently has the lowest voter turnout in the nation. Republicans are passing bills to make it harder to vote.
- West Virginia workers have been entitled to prevailing wages on public projects since 1961. Not anymore — working people are now considered “free riders.”
Senator Bob Beach spoke out about giving our jobs away to other states to please big business, but the Republicans did it anyway.
- Vaccinations have saved hundreds of millions of lives worldwide. Republicans tried to weaken West Virginia’s vaccination program.
- Equal rights for all people regardless of sexual orientation is standard 21st century practice. West Virginia Republicans have moved to reverse that too.
- The basic principle that a landowner owns his land dates back to the Magna Carta amendments in the 14th and 15th centuries. Republicans are taking that away to give the power to gas companies to take land.
- Our constitution prohibits the government from imposing religion on the citizens. But the West Virginia GOP is calling for theocratic government from the House floor.
- In fact, the radical new majority plans to reconsider the United States Constitution and take us back to absolute rule by wealth and power.
West Virginia needs leaders with ideas about the future, not a dismal forced march into the past. We’re going to have to jump through extra hoops, “qualify” for our right to vote, and turn out in record numbers, or we’ll all be looking for another place to live.