CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- West Virginia's primary election Tuesday appears short on major contests but it sets the stage for a high-stakes November.
The two-seat state Supreme Court race is among those where choices await. Democrats must pick two from a field that features Justice Robin Davis, former State Bar President Tish Chafin, Circuit Judges Jim Rowe and J.D. Beane, Supreme Court law clerk Louis Palmer, and New Martinsville lawyer H. John Rogers.
Circuit Judge John Yoder and Allen Loughry, a Supreme Court law clerk, are both assured a GOP nomination for those seats.
Five Democrats, meanwhile, seek their party's nod for a chance to succeed retiring Agriculture Commissioner Gus Douglass. A number of the other offices at or near the top of the ballot, however, have unopposed candidates or incumbents favored over poorly funded opponents.
It's the general election races, though, that are expected to include a key pair of rematches.
After losing in 2010, Republican John Raese has no rival Tuesday as he again seeks to challenge U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin, who must first face ex-lawmaker Sheirl Fletcher in the Democratic primary. At stake is a full six-year term for the seat once long held by Robert C. Byrd. Manchin won the 2010 special election held after Byrd's death.
Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin, a Democrat, and the GOP's Bill Maloney each face lesser-known rivals Tuesday but are poised to advance. Tomblin narrowly defeated Maloney in last year's special election for the governor's seat vacated by Manchin.
The office is now up for a full four years. The race has also attracted Democrat Arne Moltis and Republican Ralph William Clark.
U.S. Rep. Shelley Moore Capito must overcome two fellow Republicans, Michael Davis and state Delegate Jonathan Miller, in her quest for a seventh term. Democrats must pick from among Dugald Brown, William McCann and Howard Swint in that 2nd Congressional District.
U.S. Reps. Nick Rahall, a Democrat, and freshman David McKinley, a Republican, are unopposed Tuesday. Sue Thorn is assured the Democratic nomination to take on McKinley in the 1st District. Third District Republicans will select Rahall's challenger from among Lee Bias, Bill Lester and Delegate Rick Snuffer.