In a normal year, that likely wouldn't mean much. This time it might.
Turnout for the special primary is likely to be low.
Only 14 percent of the state's registered voters showed up last August when nominees for the late Robert Byrd's U.S. Senate seat were chosen. With no clear preference, many people may decide to skip the May primary as well.
When we look back at the crowded May ballots, we may find the two nominees were chosen by disturbingly small numbers of voters.
That means special interests, such as unions, could have more impact than usual, but they, too may have trouble drumming up interest.
After the primary, there are five months until the special general election on Tuesday, Oct. 4. General elections normally fall on the first Tuesday in November.
Campaigns usually don't kick into high gear until after Labor Day. This year there may be no break at all. Another aberration.
The Democratic and Republican national committees likely will pour money into the general election campaigns. Both parties covet governor's seats, and there are few other statewide races across the country this year.
So there may be more than reruns on TV this summer.
However, the winner of the general election will get little respite.
In early 2012, a new filing period opens. Some defeated candidates and others will take on the barely incumbent governor.
It's fascinating politics, but something bigger is at stake.
West Virginia has had strong, steady governance in recent years. Big problems have been tackled, and progress made.
Equally big challenges remain.
How do we diversify our economy? How do we develop our vital energy sector? How do we deal with massive public employee benefit debts? How do we improve schools and roads?
We need a governor with strong convictions and the ability to build consensus.
I hope responsible voters will make a good choice.
Friend is editor and publisher of the Daily Mail. She may be reached at 348-5124 or nan...@dailymail.com.