Veterans Can Rock the House

We’ve received a lot of feedback about our analysis of how veterans in West Virginia affected the various races in the state senate last year. Building on that interest, we used a similar model to look at how veterans impacted the West Virginia House of Delegates’ races. ¬†Looking at last year’s results, we found that:

  • The number of veterans who are registered to vote exceeded the margin of victory in 37 of the 67 house districts
  • There were 24 house districts where the margin of victory was less than 1000 votes
  • The smallest margin of victory was 13 votes
  • The Speaker of the House won his race by 1514 votes
  • The House Minority Leader won his race by 2379 votes
  • The average margin of victory across all districts was 1717 votes
  • The average number of veterans who cast votes across all districts 1602
  • The average number of veterans who did not vote in each district is 720

As a whole, the veteran vote can have a greater impact in the House of Delegates than in the State Senate, but it’s much more fragmented and difficult to reach. ¬† That said, given that one-third of the races could have been flipped by less than 950 votes, winning the trust and respect of a group of voters who have military service in common could be a gamechanger.

The Data