West Virginia is Trump country, according to Allahpundit at Hot Air, citing a New York Times report by Nate Cohn:
Cohn’s theory, comparing Trump’s map of support to a map of “racially charged Internet searches,” is that prejudice is driving some of his votes. There was nothing comparable in Perot’s campaign to Trump inveighing against rapists from Mexico and calling for a temporary ban on Muslims entering the United States. (There’s no disputing that Trump is the favored candidate of the white nationalists of the “alt-right.”) On the other hand, how many Trump voters in economically distressed industrial areas in the eastern U.S. like Trump’s immigration rhetoric because they “hate” Mexicans and how many simply want less competition from foreign labor in the name of bringing back jobs to America? According to Cohn, Trump’s best state is West Virginia; West Virginia also happens to be the only state in the U.S. where (as of March of this year) less than half of the adult civilian population is employed. Being a protectionist doesn't make you a racist. Either way, though, this part is certainly true — and important to the future of the GOP.Let me kick this racist canard to the curb. West Virginia has the lowest percentage of Hispanics in America.
It just elected a Hispanic as one of its three congressmen. We sent him because he shares the views of the majority of West Virginians: Strong on freedom, pro-life and patriotic.
Now I posted on this same report on Thursday, "Trump is Al Czervik bringing the hoi polloi to the Bushwood Country Club."
Allahpundit sees West Virginians latching onto Trump for economic reasons:
The Reagan revolution was about convincing centrist Dems to try smaller government and deregulation; the Trump revolution is about convincing them that big government will work for them with Donald Trump in charge. A populist would say that that’s really no different than what we have now, with GOP candidates preaching Reaganism to get elected and then practicing Trumpism once in office — except it’s Trumpism for the donor class, not for blue-collar voters. Reaganism remains the party’s ideological guiding star, though, at least for the moment. If Trump has a long run this year thanks to centrist Democrats coming out to vote for him in Republican primaries, does that change? How do you build a conservative party if a significant chunk of it is Democratic? Or do we no longer care about conservatism so long as we’ve got nationalism?"Actually, New York state is No. 1 in Trumpkins, but hey, West Virginia will accept the honor on behalf of the New York Times's home state.
You can build a Republican Party on orphaned Democrats.
I have lived in West Virginia for 34 years. Democrats have controlled the state legislature for all those years except the last year. Democrats held the governorship for 26 of those 34 years, attorney general for 29, secretary of state (which runs the elections) 30 years, agriculture commissioner 30 years, and state auditor, treasurer, and the Supreme Court for the entire 34 years. This leaves Democrats in control of the laws, the regulations, the patronage, and the courts, which became a judicial hellhole in which ambulance chasers became millionaires, and decent businesses moved the heck out.
West Virginians held a referendum on Democrats last fall. Democrats lost. For the first time in 82 years, Republicans took control of the state legislature. Within a year, the American Tort Reform Foundation took West Virginia off the list of judicial hellholes. Prospects for this year's election are encouraging.
You know who saw this happening 16 years ago? Dubya. That's right. George Walker Bush carried the state in 2000 -- the first time the state went Republican for a non-incumbent since Herbert Hoover. He did that despite the presence of the Exalted Cyclops Robert C. Byrd on the ticket.
And West Virginia has since stayed Republican in the presidential races since then. Last year, Republicans finally had enough good candidates on the state ticket to take over the legislature.
Trump's appeal in West Virginia (and New York state) is based on patriotism. Call it nationalism, protectionism -- hell, xenophobia, if you wish -- but West Virginians love their Mom, their state, and their country -- in that order. You'll see lots of American flags here. And yes, a few Confederate flags, but they are outnumbered in my neighborhood by Marine flags.
Now about Charles Trump, the gentleman shown in this post, he was the state's Republican leader of the House in the 1990s, when they were outnumbered nearly 3-to-1. He got frustrated with politics and dropped out. Last year, they talked him into running for the state Senate. Now he is part of a majority. Could not happen to a more deserving fellow.
When it comes to Republican presidential politics, West Virginia likely will not matter, as the race should be decided by May. But if it is Trump, expect his numbers in West Virginia to be YUGE in the fall.