Back during the special session, Senate Republicans prevailed over the Democratic leadership in passing the now-unconstitutional congressional plan -- with the support of Democrats who were hoping to elect Sen. Brooks McCabe, D-Kanawha, as Senate president, I'm told.
At the time, McCabe backers were hoping the six Republicans would reciprocate in the event of a close vote for Senate president.
Instead, the Republicans opted to restore the long-dormant tradition of having their members symbolically vote for the Senate minority leader in the floor vote to elect the president.
Finally, national political pundits are already salivating over the possibility that there will be two self-funded millionaire businessmen at the top of the 2012 GOP ticket in West Virginia, with John Raese's filing to again run against U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va.
(Although Bill Maloney has been awfully quiet since losing the special gubernatorial election in October. What ever happened to that statewide speaking tour he announced shortly after his defeat?)
Considering that the Manchin campaign made hay over Raese's ownership of a house in an affluent section of Palm Beach, Fla. (are there any other sections of Palm Beach?) during the 2010 election, it could be considered poor judgment for Raese to have flown into Charleston from Palm Beach International to file as a candidate Thursday.
What may be more interesting is that after filing, the Raeses flew on in their twin-engine Cessna Citation jet (actually, the jet belongs to a subsidy of Raese's Greer Industries) to the Morgantown Municipal Airport.
However, the jet is hangared, not in the University City, but at Cumberland (Md.) Regional Airport, about 70 miles east of Morgantown.
Why? Unlike West Virginia, Maryland does not collect aircraft registration fees or charge personal property taxes on aircraft. Purchases of aircraft are also exempt from Maryland sales taxes, if the company that owns the plane is engaged in interstate commerce.
For a Citation CJ2, domiciling the jet in Maryland saves about $240,000 in sales taxes, and about $52,000 a year in personal property taxes.
Say what you want about Raese's skills as a politician, but he's certainly an astute businessman.
Reach Phil Kabler at ph...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-1220.