Larry Rogers filed the papers with the West Virginia Secretary of State’s office on Tues., June 17, to run as an Independent Candidate for District 24 House of Delegates. Because the Independent Party is a minority party, candidates are not allowed to run in the primary election. However, they must receive a portion of signatures—decided by the population of each district—to be included on the ballot. In District 24, that number is 76; Rogers received over 130 signatures.
Although Rogers was a registered Democrat until 2012, he never really felt peace with his party decision until he switched to Independent.
“I never was actually a Democrat,” said Rogers. “I can’t remember when I voted Democrat for a president. It’s been a long time.”
Rogers said his three main goals, if voted into the legislature, are overturning the Governor’s veto on the 20 week Pain Ban that prevents abortion after 20 weeks, introducing a bill to stop the common core curriculum that is finding its way into the W.Va. education system and to repeal the 2009 Cap and Trade on Coal.
Rogers prides himself in already knowing how to draft legislation since he, along with Eugene Mazzocchi, co-wrote the WV Castle Doctrine Law. The law gives a person a right to defend themselves in any place they have a legal right to be.
Being a pioneer for local crime watches, Rogers has been called all over the state to assist in creating something similar to what they have achieved in the Omar area. Rogers says the Omar Area Crime Watch has succeeded in lowering the crime rate in the area 70 percent. He has started over 20 neighborhood watches in southern W.Va. and recently traveled to Sommerset, Pa. to help start one there.
He has also received many awards for his volunteerism: in 2008, he received an award from the W.Va. Legislature for volunteerism, in 2013 he was named Volunteer of the Year in W.Va. and he received the Distinguished Mountaineer Award and in 2014 he was named a Kentucky Colonel for Community Service.
Rogers is a retired coal miner who worked in the business for 29 years, and his family has been in the coal industry for more than 125 years. He says he will do everything in his power to help the coal miners.
Rogers and his wife, Janet, have three children and five grandchildren. He attends church at Pinecreek Freewill Baptist.
The General Election will be held Tues., November 4. Rogers’ opponents for the two seats in the 24th District are Democrats Ralph Rodighiero and Rupie Phillips and Republican Gloria Meadows.