After 82 years of Democratic Party control of the West Virginia Legislature, thee state's economy was dead. Actually, it had died 50 years earlier. Most of the steel mills, chemical factories and aluminum plants were shuttered. The post-coal economy died before coal did. West Virginia was last in the nation in just about every economic category. More than half the adults in the state had no job.
In November 2014, West Virginians finally elected a Republican Legislature.
Now as their second regular 60-day session ends, Republicans kept their promise.
Republicans overrode Democratic Governor Earl Ray Tomblin's veto to pass a 20-week limit on abortion. No more killing viable babies in the womb.
Republicans overrode Democratic Governor Earl Ray Tomblin's veto to pass a Right To Work law, which takes effect July 1. West Virginia will be the 26th Right To Work state.
Republicans overrode Democratic Governor Earl Ray Tomblin's veto to end the prevailing wage law that overpaid workers on government projects.
Republicans passed a Religious Freedom Restoration Act. If Democratic Governor Earl Ray Tomblin vetoes it, Republicans will override again.
Republicans are closing in on passage of a concealed gun law that ends the $100 permit fee paid to sheriffs in the state. Vermont never required a permit. It has the nation's lowest gun homicide rate. Democratic Governor Earl Ray Tomblin likely will veto it. Republicans hopefully will have time to override him.
Meanwhile, the first Republican elected state attorney general since 1928, Patrick Morrisey won a stay in the U.S. Supreme Court of Barack Obama's plan to finally kill the coal industry.
Last year, Republicans passed sweeping legal reforms which should reduce car insurance premiums. Republicans also made judicial elections nonpartisan.
They also had to battle the Democratic Secretary of State -- again -- to keep a state Senate seat. Once again, they hauled her into the state Supreme Court and once again the justices (three Democrats and two Republicans) said she acted in violation of the state constitution.
Things are going so well in West Virginia that I only wish this was done 10 years ago.
Compare and contrast to the Republican Congress.