2016 West Virginia gubernatorial election

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West Virginia gubernatorial election, 2016

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  Jim Justice 2017 InaugurationHighlights PB-63 (32366955776) (cropped).jpg Bill Cole.jpg 3x4.svg
Nominee Jim Justice Bill Cole Charlotte Pritt
Party Democratic Republican Mountain
Popular vote 350,408 301,987 42,068
Percentage 49.1% 42.3% 5.9%

West Virginia Governor Election Results by County, 2016.svg
County results

Justice:      40-50%      50–60%      60–70%

Cole:      40–50%      50–60%      60–70%

Governor before election

Earl Ray Tomblin
Democratic

Elected Governor

Jim Justice
Democratic

The 2016 West Virginia gubernatorial election took place on November 8, 2016, to elect the Governor of West Virginia, concurrently with the 2016 U.S. presidential election, as well as elections to the United States Senate in other states and elections to the United States House of Representatives and various state and local elections. The primaries were held on May 10.

Incumbent Democratic Governor Earl Ray Tomblin was barred from running for a second full term. He had ascended to the governorship upon Joe Manchin's election to the Senate in 2010, and was elected to a full term in 2012. Under the West Virginia Constitution, a partial term counts toward the limit of two consecutive terms.

The Democratic candidate, Jim Justice, a coal and agriculture businessman, won the open seat with a plurality of the vote, despite Republican Donald Trump simultaneously winning West Virginia in a landslide during the presidential election. Just seven months into his term as governor, Justice rejoined the Republican Party on August 4, 2017, after speaking at a Trump rally in the state.

Background[edit]

In November 2010, Democratic Governor Joe Manchin resigned after being elected to the U.S. Senate. Earl Ray Tomblin, the President of the West Virginia Senate, became Acting Governor and won a special election held in October 2011. He was re-elected to a full term in the regularly-scheduled 2012 election. Tomblin was ineligible to run for re-election as the Constitution of West Virginia limits Governors to two consecutive terms, regardless of whether they are full or partial terms. However, Governors are re-eligible after four years out of office.[1][2]

After publicly speculating he would run for his former office, Manchin was considered a heavy favorite in the 2016 race. However, he announced on April 19, 2015, that he would be remaining in the Senate instead.[3]

Democratic primary[edit]

Results by county. Blue indicates a win by Justice, green a win by Goodwin, and yellow a win by Kessler. Darker shades indicate higher percentages of the vote.

Candidates[edit]

Declared[edit]

Declined[edit]

Polling[edit]

Poll source Date(s)
administered
Sample
size
Margin of
error
Jim
Justice
Booth
Goodwin
Jeff
Kessler
Undecided
MetroNews April 22–May 2, 2016 315 ± 4.0% 32% 27% 23% 18%
Public Policy Polling April 29–May 1, 2016 637 ± 3.9% 37% 23% 19% 21%
West Virginia Veterans March 2–6, 2016 600 ± 3.9% 36% 20% 16% 28%
MetroNews February 11–16, 2016 208 ± 4.9% 32% 25% 23% 21%
Global Strategy Group^ December 1–3, 2015 350 ± 5.2% 39% 13% 19% 21%
  • ^ Indicates a poll taken for Jim Justice campaign.

Results[edit]

Democratic primary results[17]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jim Justice 132,704 50.37%
Democratic Booth Goodwin 65,416 29.32%
Democratic Jeff Kessler 60,230 21.31%
Total votes 258,350 100.00%

Republican primary[edit]

Candidates[edit]

Declared[edit]

Did not file[edit]

  • Andrew Utterback, college student and candidate for Mayor of Pineville in 2014[19]
  • Edwin Vanover, former Bramwell Police Chief and Democratic candidate for House of Delegates in 2012[19]

Declined[edit]

Endorsements[edit]

Bill Cole
Individuals
Organizations
Newspapers

Polling[edit]

Results[edit]

Republican primary results[17]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Bill Cole 161,127 100.00%
Total votes 161,127 100.00%

Mountain Party[edit]

Candidates[edit]

Declared[edit]

  • Charlotte Pritt, former Democratic State Delegate, former Democratic State Senator, write-in candidate for governor in 1992 and Democratic nominee for governor in 1996[38]

Endorsements[edit]

Charlotte Pritt

Organizations

Libertarian Party[edit]

Candidates[edit]

Declared[edit]

  • David Moran, retired engineer and farmer[40]

General election[edit]

Debates[edit]

Predictions[edit]

Source Ranking As of
The Cook Political Report[41] Tossup November 3, 2016
Sabato's Crystal Ball[42] Lean D November 7, 2016
Rothenberg Political Report[43] Tilt D November 3, 2016
Daily Kos[44] Tossup November 7, 2016
Real Clear Politics[45] Lean R November 1, 2016

Polling[edit]

Poll source Date(s)
administered
Sample
size
Margin of
error
Jim
Justice (D)
Bill
Cole (R)
Charlotte
Pritt (M)
David
Moran (L)
Phil
Hudok (C)
Undecided
SurveyMonkey November 1–7, 2016 472 ± 4.6% 36% 45% 13% 6%
SurveyMonkey October 31–November 6, 2016 443 ± 4.6% 37% 43% 13% 7%
SurveyMonkey October 28–November 3, 2016 386 ± 4.6% 40% 42% 12% 6%
SurveyMonkey October 27–November 2, 2016 330 ± 4.6% 39% 44% 10% 7%
SurveyMonkey October 26–November 1, 2016 318 ± 4.6% 42% 41% 12% 5%
SurveyMonkey October 25–31, 2016 321 ± 4.6% 42% 43% 13% 2%
MetroNews October 12–17, 2016 408 ± 4.9% 44% 33% 8% 5% 9%
Global Strategy Group October 11–13, 2016 N/A ± 4.0% 44% 34% 8% 2% 12%
NMB Research October 8–10, 2016 N/A ± 4.4% 39% 39% 5% 2% 1% 12%
Garin-Hart-Yang September 13–17, 2016 500 ± 5.0% 46% 33% 7% 4% 10%
Just Win Strategies September 8–10, 2016 600 ± 4.0% 44% 42% 3% 2% 2% 7%
R.L. Repass & Partners/MetroNews August 9–28, 2016 435 ± 4.7% 46% 32% 8% 5% 9%
Global Strategy Group August 1–3, 2016 419 ± 4.8% 47% 37% 15%
Public Policy Polling April 29–May 1, 2016 1,201 ± 2.8% 41% 35% 24%
MetroNews April 22–May 2, 2016 596 ± 4.0% 52% 34% 14%
Orion Strategies February 20–21, 2016 306 ± 5.6% 37% 33% 30%
MetroNews February 11–16, 2016 411 ± 4.9% 49% 39% 12%
Orion Strategies August 24–25, 2015 406 ± 4.9% 34% 31% 35%

→ Indicates an internal poll conducted by the West Virginia Republican Party for Bill Cole.

Results[edit]

West Virginia gubernatorial election, 2016[46]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Jim Justice 350,408 49.09% -1.40%
Republican Bill Cole 301,987 42.30% -3.35%
Mountain Charlotte Pritt 42,068 5.89% +3.36%
Libertarian David Moran 15,354 2.15% +0.81%
Constitution Phil Hudok 4,041 0.57% N/A
Total votes 713,858 100.0% N/A
Democratic hold

Maps[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Miller, Tom. "2016 race for governor could be crowded". The Lincoln Journal. Retrieved March 4, 2013.
  2. ^ King, Joselyn (May 18, 2011). "Tomblin, Maloney win nominations". Wetzel Chronicle. Retrieved March 3, 2013.
  3. ^ Ramsey, Pam (April 19, 2015). "Manchin says he'll stay in Senate, forgoes governor bid". The Journal. Retrieved April 19, 2015.
  4. ^ "Ex-US attorney Goodwin files for W.Va. governor race". The Journal. January 4, 2016. Retrieved January 4, 2016.
  5. ^ Eyre, Eric (May 11, 2015). "Greenbrier owner Jim Justice enters governor's race". The Charleston Gazette. Retrieved May 11, 2015.
  6. ^ Ebert, Joel (March 19, 2015). "Kessler says he'll run for governor in 2016". Charleston Daily Mail. Retrieved March 19, 2015.
  7. ^ a b c "Sunday Sit-Down: West Virginia GOP Chairman Conrad Lucas". The Intelligencer & Wheeling News Register. November 16, 2014. Retrieved November 18, 2014.
  8. ^ Jenkins, Jeff (June 15, 2015). "Auditor Gainer planning re-election bid in 2016". West Virginia MetroNews. Retrieved June 17, 2015.
  9. ^ a b c d e f g "West Virginia Undergoing Political, Generational Change". Roll Call. May 1, 2014. Retrieved May 1, 2014.
  10. ^ "GOP Senate may run purple". Politico. Retrieved April 15, 2014.
  11. ^ "Manchin, 50-50 on Possible Return Run for Governor". West Virginia Public Broadcasting. April 7, 2015. Retrieved April 8, 2015.
  12. ^ Raju, Manu (April 14, 2015). "Joe Manchin signals stronger interest in West Virginia governor run". Politico. Retrieved April 14, 2015.
  13. ^ Eric Bradner (April 19, 2015). "Joe Manchin picks Senate over governor's bid". CNN. Retrieved April 19, 2015.
  14. ^ Aaron Blake (January 23, 2015). "The 5 best governors races in the country". The Washington Post. Retrieved January 25, 2015.
  15. ^ Jonathan Mattise (January 23, 2015). "Though @WaPost says otherwise, WV Treasurer John Perdue's office says he's not running for governor". Twitter. Retrieved February 7, 2015.
  16. ^ "W.Va. Secretary of State Files Early Re-Election Paperwork". West Virginia Public Broadcasting. March 19, 2015. Retrieved March 20, 2015.
  17. ^ a b "Official 2016 Primary Election Results". West Virginia Secretary of State. Retrieved July 20, 2016.
  18. ^ Johnson, Shauna (June 2, 2015). "Republican Bill Cole launches 2016 gubernatorial campaign". West Virginia MetroNews. Retrieved June 4, 2015.
  19. ^ a b Deitz, Leah (May 15, 2015). "Jim Justice vying for Governor's Office". Mountain Messenger. Retrieved June 17, 2015.
  20. ^ Ebert, Joel (June 17, 2015). "Cole endorsed by Congressman Jenkins". Charleston Daily Mail. Retrieved June 17, 2015.
  21. ^ Hicks, Ian (June 1, 2015). "McKinley Won't Run for Governor". The Intelligencer & Wheeling News Register. Retrieved June 1, 2015.
  22. ^ Johnson, Shauna (March 19, 2015). "Morrisey says he is considering a possible run for governor in 2016". West Virginia MetroNews. Retrieved March 20, 2015.
  23. ^ "Morrisey has $850K for possible governor bid". The Journal. April 2, 2015. Retrieved April 2, 2015.
  24. ^ Jenkins, Jeff (June 16, 2015). "Morrisey opts to seek reelection instead of governor's office". West Virginia MetroNews. Retrieved June 17, 2015.
  25. ^ a b c d e "WV House Delegation for Cole". Friends of Cole. October 8, 2015.
  26. ^ "U.S. Sen. Capito backs Bill Cole in run for governor". WV MetroNews. April 11, 2016.
  27. ^ "UPDATE: Charleston Mayor announces he's dropped Republican affiliation". wsaz.com. June 17, 2016.
  28. ^ "NFIB endorses Bill Cole for Governor". WV MetroNews. July 18, 2016.
  29. ^ "West Virginia Endorsements 2016". National Right to Life. October 15, 2016.
  30. ^ "W.Va. Coal Association endorses Bill Cole for governor". Bluefield Daily Telegraph. February 13, 2016.
  31. ^ "Endorsement: Republican Bill Cole, governor of W.Va". Bluefield Daily Telegraph. October 23, 2016.
  32. ^ "Daily Mail endorsement: Experience makes Cole a better fit for governor". Charleston Gazette-Mail. October 25, 2016.
  33. ^ "Cole will bring progress to West Virginia". Daily Times. October 17, 2016.
  34. ^ "Elect Cole For Real Progress". The Intelligencer and Wheeling News Register. October 15, 2016.
  35. ^ "Cole will deliver progress for W.Va". The Inter-Mountain. October 15, 2016.
  36. ^ "Cole should be the next governor of West Virginia". The Journal. October 16, 2016.
  37. ^ "Leadership: Bill Cole should be our next governor". The Parkersburg News and Sentinel. October 18, 2016.
  38. ^ "Mountain Party chooses Pritt as gubernatorial candidate". The Charleston Gazette. July 16, 2016. Retrieved July 16, 2016.
  39. ^ Sconyers, Jim (September 10, 2016). "West Virginia Sierra Club Endorses Pritt For Governor". Sierra Club. Retrieved September 13, 2016.
  40. ^ Staff. "WV Libertarians announce candidates for statewide offices". Charleston Gazette-Mail. Retrieved April 14, 2016.
  41. ^ "2016 Governor Race ratings". The Cook Political Report. Retrieved October 15, 2018.
  42. ^ "Our Final 2016 picks". Sabato's Crystal Ball. Retrieved October 15, 2018.
  43. ^ "Gubernatorial Ratings". The Rothenberg Political Report. Retrieved October 15, 2018.
  44. ^ "Elections 2015-16". Daily Kos. Retrieved October 15, 2018.
  45. ^ "2016 Election Maps - 2016 Governor Races". Real Clear Politics. Retrieved October 15, 2018.
  46. ^ "Statewide Results General Election November 8, 2016". West Virginia Secretary of State. State of West Virginia. Archived from the original on 25 December 2016. Retrieved 28 December 2016.

External links[edit]

Official campaign websites (Archived)