DEMOCRATIC leaders in Maryland have abolished the death penalty, as 17 others states and the District of Columbia have done. Kanawha Circuit Judge Tod Kaufman says his father, the late state Sen. Paul Kaufman, along with Sen. Bob Holliday and others, led West Virginia's abolition effort in 1965 — so the Mountain State was almost a half-century ahead of Maryland.
In 2011, Democratic Delegate Doug Skaff joined Republicans in breaking Kanawha County's largest legislative district into two smaller districts to make government "closer to the people." But Skaff and Republicans voted to revoke gun safety laws passed by Charleston and other city councils, which are close to the people. So, do they want local control, or not?
One by one, states are approving gay marriage. We'll bet that West Virginia, with its mountain conservative tradition, will be the very last to adopt the reform.