ByÂ Jon Dougherty
(TNS) Though the majority of jurisdictions in Virginia are opposed to new draconian gun control laws being passed by newly empowered Democrats, is isn’t likely they’re going to agree to be absorbed into neighboring West Virginia anytime soon.
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At least, that’s the opinion of Robert Wells, vice chairman of the Board of Supervisors for Frederick County, Va.
His county is one of three being courted by West Virginia Republicans to ‘secede’ from Virginia in an effort to escape new gun control laws and other measures being eyed by Leftist Democrats.
“I canâ€™t speak for the rest of the people in the world,” Wells told local media this week. However, in a message directed at West Virginia lawmakers, Wells said, “Youâ€™re wasting your time. I donâ€™t see Virginia, any portion of Virginia, joining West Virginia for any reason whatsoever.â€
Instead of focusing on an address change, Wells said he was focusing on the county’s budget. And he suggested that’s what his West Virginia counterparts ought to do.
“My God, get something else to do,â€ he told MetroNews in a phone interview. â€œWest Virginia, come on guys.â€
Wells’ comments come in response to legislative efforts by West Virginia lawmakers to provide a path for Virginia counties to join the smaller state, as Sara A Carter’s website reports:
The West Virginia state legislature has proposed aÂ billÂ to admit someÂ Virginia countiesÂ to the Mountain State, as Virginia threatens to limit its citizensâ€™ second amendment rights. The resolution, which passed through the West Virginia Senate onÂ January 13, was drafted and introduced by Judiciary Committee Chairman Charles Trump, IV (R) of Morgan County.
â€œProviding for an election to be had, pending approval of the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Virginia, and a majority of qualified citizens voting upon the proposition prior to August 1, 2020, for the admission of certain counties and independent cities of the Commonwealth of Virginia to be admitted to the State of West Virginia as constituent counties, under the provisions of Article VI, Section 11 of the Constitution of West Virginia,â€ theÂ billÂ begins. …
In the meantime, one Virginia man has created a â€œVexitâ€Â petitionÂ due to the stateâ€™s gun control policies. Additionally,Â Campbell County attorney and conservative activist, Rick Boyer, says he willÂ follow throughÂ with a plan to add â€œVexitâ€ on the 2020 ballot, citing the stateâ€™s gun control measures.
â€œPeople are just realizing the brand new Virginia is not the Virginia I grew up in and my kids are not going to grow up in the same level of freedom that I enjoyed and they want to do something about it,â€ Boyer said. â€œI think a large part of Virginia is realizing we are not represented by the current legislation and the current Governor.â€ …
West Virginiaâ€™s Governor Jim Justice (R) has the boldÂ visionÂ of his state, which he often calls aÂ â€œdiamond in the rough,â€Â competing on the national stage. But with anÂ agingÂ population, West Virginia isÂ projectedÂ to lose one of its three seats in the U.S. House of Representatives following the 2020 Census.
â€œI donâ€™t really want to meddle nor will I meddle with whatâ€™s going on in Virginia, but if youâ€™re unhappy with where youâ€™re at, and West Virginia is going like West Virginia is going, we want you to come,â€ Justice toldÂ Fox News.
Here’s the glitch. While the West Virginia bill has a good chance of passing, there is no way a similar piece of legislation will make it through the Virginia Assembly, which is now controlled by Democrats:
If the bill passes, Virginia counties and cities have until August 1 to request admission into West Virginia. This would require approval from the Virginia General Assembly. If that approval were to be granted, West Virginia voters would decide whether or not to accept the municipalities seeking admission to the state as part of the general election in November.
So, the only way West Virginia will realistically inherit new counties from neighboring Virginia is if those Virginia jurisdictions secede the way Virginia counties did during the Civil War to form West Virginia in the first place.
Then, of course, there is the matter of the Constitution, which says under Article IV, Sect. 3:
New states may be admitted by the Congress into this union; but no new states shall be formed or erected within the jurisdiction of any other state; nor any state be formed by the junction of two or more states, or parts of states, without the consent of the legislatures of the states concerned as well as of the Congress.
Hence, Wells’ frustration with the West Virginia effort which, at this point, is really nothing more than a thought exercise.
The only way this happens is if officials in the targeted counties simply defy the Constitution, the will of the Virginia Assembly, and the will of many people who live in their counties and declare themselves to be part of West Virginia. Without the force to back up such a declaration, it’s futile.
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