We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

At a recent candidate forum hosted by the Eastern Panhandle Business Association, a member of the audience posed a question to Pete Dougherty, candidate for the West Virginia State Senate in the 16th District: “Why are you a Democrat?” The assumption, I believe, is that most people consider Mr. Dougherty - the current Jefferson County sheriff - to be a moderate centrist sort of Democrat. You know, the type of “conservative Democrat”, if there is such a thing, that might even consider a switch over to the GOP.

Candidate Dougherty played right along. His response to the question was along the lines of his family having been Democrats for generations. He sounded almost apologetic. The fact is that candidate Dougherty is actually to the LEFT of the Democrats. He is endorsed by the WFP – the Working Families Party – a leftist “progressive” activist political party that got its start in New York City in the late 1990s. The WFP leadership has included members of Moveon.org, a leftist activist group George Soros funded at its inception. They are the party that Bernie Sanders says most aligns with his brand of “democratic socialism”. Don’t take my word for it, you can read all about it in an article entitled, Bernie Sanders Calls the Working Families Party ‘the Closest Thing’ to Socialism.

The WFP didn’t endorse Sanders this time around – they endorsed Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren. In a NY Times article from last year, WFP director Maurice Mitchell said, “We need a mass movement to make her plans a reality, and we’re going to be a part of that work….You don’t defeat the moderate wing of Democrats through thought pieces or pithy tweets, you defeat their politics through organizing.” So perish the thought that Pete Dougherty is a moderate. He is far left.

According to an article in The Atlantic, “In 2013, the WFP was active in just four states—New York, Connecticut, New Jersey, and Oregon. Since then, it has opened chapters in Washington, D.C., Maryland, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Rhode Island, with New Mexico expected to join this year.” They recruit people who feel abandoned by their local Democrats. That Atlantic article was published in January of 2016, since then they’ve set up shop in West Virginia.

Observing the locations where the WFP has operations there is an uncanny but unmistakable anecdotal correlation to the unrest that we see around the nation. The New York City metropolitan area is comprised of large portions of Connecticut and New Jersey. The WFP is a huge supporter of NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio and is given much credit for his political success. I was born in NYC and I can tell you that Mayor de Blasio has taken a wrecking ball to that city. People are fleeing New York, New York. Then there is Oregon where Portland is under siege by rioters. The same is true for Kenosha Wisconsin, Chicago Illinois….it seems that where the WFP goes, chaos seems to follow. Could be just a coincidence…….just sayin’.

There are only six of the 17 West Virginia State Senate races where the WFP has endorsed - and Pete Dougherty is one of them. They must really like him. However, Dougherty is not the only local candidate endorsed by the WFP. Delegate John Doyle, the incumbent in the 67th Delegate District (disclosure – I’m his opponent) and Sammi Brown, the incumbent in the 65th Delegate District are both endorsed by the WFP. Personally, I view Delegate Brown as our version of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, aka AOC, the Congresswoman from New York City. The WFP is also credited with much of AOC’s success.

So when Pete Dougherty tries to paint the picture that he is a moderate – know that he is not. He aligns with the more radical elements that are the furthest left in the Democrat Party. If you want Jefferson County to be more like New York City – or Portland Oregon – vote for him. Or John Doyle. Or Sammi Brown. I went to high school in New York City. I still have friends and family living there. I wouldn’t live there now if you gave me a penthouse on Park Avenue. I don’t want Jefferson County to become like New York City. I hope that you don’t either.

Pete Dougherty WV Elections Jefferson County Berkeley County WV State Senate Politics
Elliot Simon

Elliot Simon

I'm a retired executive and consultant. My wife and I have lived up on the mountain outside of Harpers Ferry since 2002. We have six cats. It would be nice if we could all agree on everything, but lately we... [More...]