Skip to comments.WV Legislator May Challenge Longtime Congressman In 2006
Posted on 07/27/2005 5:12:19 PM PDT by Clintonfatigued
Current State Sen. Andy McKenzie, R-Ohio, could be gearing up for a potential run against incumbent U.S. Rep. Alan Mollohan, D-W.Va, in 2006.
McKenzie responded "no comment" this week when asked if it were true he was planning a future Congressional campaign. He didn't deny that he might be seeking the office
(Excerpt) Read more at news-register.net ...
This could be interesting. Mollohan hasn't had a competitive race in decades and may have grown rusty. And of course, if Robert "Sheets" Byrd is forced to step down by his age, this is a real pickup possibility.
McKenzie, 34, of Wheeling has served in the West Virginia Senate since 1996. He is not up for election next year, and would not have to leave his seat to run for West Virginia's 1st District Congressional seat.
So how did the R-OH get past the editor?
"So how did the R-OH get past the editor?"
"Mollohan hasn't had a competitive race in decades and may have grown rusty."
Bush carried all three of West Virgina's congressional districts last year, so it's a possiblity.
I know the WV-1st hasn't elected a Republican to represent it since Shelley Moore Capito's father, Arch Moore, in 1966 (where he served 12 years prior to being elected Governor in '68). Robert and Alan Mollohan (father and son) have controlled that district (with the exception of Moore's 12 years) since 1953.
What % did Bush carry the southernmost 3rd district in '04 ? I surely thought that uber-union territory would've gone (at least narrowly) for Kerry. I know it once contained 3 districts from 1933-63, and hasn't entirely sent a Republican within those borders since 1930 !
"What % did Bush carry the southernmost 3rd district in '04 ?"
So Robert Mollohan represented the district for two terms in the 1950s, lost to Arch Moore, and then retook the district when Moore ran for Governor?
Thanks for the clearing that up. Before I clicked on the link, I thought there might be a carpetbagging issue. Then once I clicked on the link, well I was more confused than before..
At least some of those counties are starting to slowly make their way back to their roots. Used to be a time when East Tennessee and Southern West Virginia voted almost in an identical fashion. Attempts to move East TN to the 'Rats failed, and it has remained one of the most dependably GOP regions in the country.
Mollohan initially won the seat in 1952 (along with our dear beloved Robert Byrd), defeating Republican Francis Love (who had been a part of the anti-Truman backlash of '46, serving one term). '52 was actually a disastrous year for the Republicans in West Virginia, with the state defeating Eisenhower and former GOP Senator Chap Revercomb, and only defeating a single Democrat incumbent, Maurice Burnside, who went down to the only single solitary Republican victor, the elderly 77-year old Dr. Will Neal, to his first term in Congress in the then-4th district (then centered on Huntington). Neal had been a part of the previous pre-Depression majority state GOP and waited out a quarter century to make a political comeback (that's devotion !).
Arch Moore had been a one-term State Delegate when he initially challenged Mollohan in 1954, narrowly losing (along with Dr. Neal, making the entire 8-member delegation Democrat that year).
Mollohan left his marginal district after 2 terms and was all but the odds-on favorite to win the Governorship in 1956 when he was upended in a surprise by a State Delegate named Cecil Underwood. Since 1946, 1956 was really the last GOP highwater year in the state (along with Underwood, the GOP captured one of the Senate seats with Chap Revercomb, and 2 House seats, going to Arch Moore and Dr. Neal reclaiming his seat). 1958 saw the Senate seats revert back to the 'Rats (where they've remained since), and only Arch Moore survived in the Congressional delegation (despite Robert Mollohan attempting a comeback, the sole bright spot for the GOP).
Mollohan bided his time for another decade until 1968 and easily recaptured the seat. Aside from a capture of 2 of the 4 House seats in 1980 (which went back to the 'Rats in '82), the GOP remained shut-out until 1999 when Shelley Moore Capito won (interesting to note that she does not occupy her dad's seat, which was the northernmost part of the state). To get an idea of how "historic" Mrs. Capito's win and hold of the Charleston-based 2nd is, no Republican or Republicans have held on to that district as long as she has (now 4 times) since Joseph Holt Gaines won his 2nd term in 1902 (and served 10 years in total from 1901-1911). If she opts to stay put in her House seat and wins again in '06 & '08, she will be the longest-serving Republican from that district since statehood. Hopefully she won't have to be the sole Republican from the delegation for much longer (as her dad was for 10 years).
Very interesting, as usual.
Capito has actually won only 3 times (2000, 2002, and 2004). And I don't think she'll stay in the House for 10 years---if she doesn't run against Senator Byrd in 2006, she'll run against Senator Rockefeller or Governor Manchin in 2008.
When Dr. Will Neal was elected at 81 in 1956, was he the oldest non-incumbent to ever win a House race? The only competition I can think of would be old widows who won their late husband's seat in a special election, but I can't imagine any of them running at age 81.
So Cecil Underwood served as Governor in the 1950s, 1960s, 1990s and 2000s? Pretty impressive stuff. Lots of other governors have served in 4 different decades (Janklow of SD and Hunt of NC come to mind), but I'm sure not too many have served in 4 decades with a 2-decade hole in the middle.
Ah, whoops, I don't know why I was thinking she succeeded Bob Wise in '98 rather than 2000. Though that record of hers still stands even at 3 terms. Unless Manchin screws up, he probably gets his 2 terms (assuming he doesn't end up switching parties). She's going to need beaucoup bucks to challenge Rockefeller (if she opts out of challenging Byrd).
"When Dr. Will Neal was elected at 81 in 1956, was he the oldest non-incumbent to ever win a House race? The only competition I can think of would be old widows who won their late husband's seat in a special election, but I can't imagine any of them running at age 81."
I think he may hold the record, but I could be wrong (I do, though, tend to consider him an incumbent of sorts, as he was only out of Congress a term). Of course, if Ken Hechler had accomplished his goal of a return to Congress recently, he would've been a decade older than Neal. Hechler, ironically, was the one who beat Neal for reelection in '58 (I wonder if his campaign centered on the fact that Neal was "too old" ?). I know the oldest man to begin a term in the Senate (though he was appointed) was 87-year old Andrew Jackson Houston in 1941 (he, of course, was Sam Houston's son, and probably both will have the record of being the only father and son having served in Congress nearly 120 years apart (!) Unless Strom Thurmond, Jr. lives until 2074 (when he's a few years past 100) and gets appointed to his dad's old seat, that record won't ever be broken). Rebecca Latimer Felton beats Houston's record by a few months, also being sworn in at 87 to serve 1 day in 1922.
"So Cecil Underwood served as Governor in the 1950s, 1960s, 1990s and 2000s? Pretty impressive stuff. Lots of other governors have served in 4 different decades (Janklow of SD and Hunt of NC come to mind), but I'm sure not too many have served in 4 decades with a 2-decade hole in the middle."
Underwood, of course, holds the record for being the youngest AND oldest Governor of West Virginia. I don't think anyone has a gap of 36 years between their service in that office (though I'd have to look that up for early or colonial Governors). It wasn't an intentional record, as Underwood was unsuccessful in attempts to run for the Senate and Governorship in the intervening years. It's unfortunate he was not reelected (even as Dubya carried the state) in 2000 and spared the state from 4 years of Boob Wise.
Andrew Jackson Houston served in the Senate 118 years after his father first served in Congress and 95 years after his father first served in the Senate. So Strom, Jr. would have to be in the Senate in 2050 to break the record for longest span between father-son service in the Senate and in 2073 to break the record for longest span between father-son service in Congress. Strom, Jr. would be 78 in 2050 and 101 in 2073, so if he ever gets elected to the Senate (which I think might happen as early as 2008, if he were to challenge Lindsey Graham in the GOP primary), the Senate record would be fairly easily achievable and the Congress record would not be out of the question (he's got good genes).
I don't get the impression that Strom, Jr. may even want a continuing career in politics (since he's already given up his position as U.S. Attorney). He seems far more low-key than his daddy, who seemed to relish campaigning. More than likely, Lindsey Graham's Senate seat will easily go to Tom Ravenel in '08 (and none too soon !).
"More than likely, Lindsey Graham's Senate seat will easily go to Tom Ravenel in '08 (and none too soon !)."
I don't know if he'd leave the Governorship midway through a 2nd term to seek a Senate seat (especially when it would mean challenging the incumbent Republican in the primary, which would presumably get ugly). Tom Ravenel would have nothing to lose in running. Another problem for Sanford is that giving up the office might mean passing it off to the erratic Andre Bauer (whom I hope is beaten by Carroll Campbell's son next year in the primary).