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West Virginia's 1st congressional district: Wikis


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West Virginia's 1st congressional district
United States House of Representatives, West Virginia District 1 map.png
Current Representative Alan Mollohan (D)
Population (2000) 602,545
Median income $30,303
Ethnicity 96.4% White, 1.8% Black, 0.7% Asian, 0.7% Hispanic, 0.2% Native American, 0.1% other
Cook PVI R+9

The First Congressional District of West Virginia is located in the northern part of the state. It is the most regularly drawn of the state's three districts.

It includes the industrial Rust Belt area of the state's northern panhandle which includes the district's third largest city, Wheeling, as well as Fairmont, Clarksburg, and the college town of Morgantown, the home of the main campus of West Virginia University. The largest city in the district is Parkersburg; the second largest is Morgantown. It also includes many rural farm and timber producing areas. The cities are Democratic strongholds, while the rural areas are much more conservative and have a tendency to swing Republican more often.

The district is currently represented by Alan Mollohan, a Democrat who has represented the district since succeeding his father Bob in 1983. While Alan Mollohan hasn't faced serious opposition since 1984, it is a district where both parties have an equal chance of winning. State legislators are equally split between parties.

West Virginia tends to give its representatives long tenures in Washington, and the 1st District is no exception. Only three men have represented the district since 1953: Bob Mollohan (D) (1953-1957), former Governor Arch Moore, Jr. (R) (1957-1969), Bob Mollohan again (1969-1983), and Alan Mollohan (1983-present).

The district will exist as currently drawn until the 2010 Census. Current trends indicate that population growth in the Morgantown-Fairmont-Clarksburg area balances the decline in the Rust Belt areas, so the district is probably stable.

While the district and state as a whole has been very Democratic, the West Virginia Democratic Party tends to be more socially conservative than the national party and therefore has a tendency to cross over and vote Republican in presidential elections. No Democrat since Bill Clinton has carried the 1st District in presidential elections. George W. Bush carried the district both times in 2000 with 54% of the vote and 2004 with 58% of the vote. John McCain carried the district in 2008 with 56.77% of the vote while Barack Obama received 41.51%.



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