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How to be a WV Can’t Wait Candidate

For too long West Virginians have been asked to vote for the lesser of two evils. No more: the only way we’ll get the kind of government we deserve--one that chooses the side of West Virginians over out of state interests--is if we take it. We are calling on every candidate to stand on the side of West Virginians who work the hardest and bear the most—every time.

More than 100 WV Can’t Wait candidates ran in the 2020 primary, and more than 40 WV Can’t Wait candidates ran in the 2020 general election.

West Virginians from every race, region, religion, and party came together to put our time and money behind these candidates—and the first slate has been seated.

These candidates all signed our pledge to run campaigns on the side of West Virginians. That means refusing to cross a picket line or accept corporate cash. It means not hiding from debates or members of the public. Read the full pledge below.

These candidates also signed on to our New Deal for West Virginia:
33 policy plans written by the people of West Virginia, designed to make our state the best place in our country to live and raise a family. Our candidates promised to side with veterans on veterans’ issues, workers on workers issues, small businesses on business issues, and seniors on seniors’ issues. Our candidates understand that the people who are closest to a problem are the ones best suited to know what it takes to solve it.

Finally, we ask candidates to meet with local WV Can’t Wait leaders in their area—our Neighborhood, County and Constituency Captains and volunteers—to learn more about the issues affecting their districts from the people of their districts. Our County and Constituency Captains held more than 197 Town Halls and conducted more than 11,000 conversations with voters over the past two years—and we’re still counting.

Who will run in the next election? Who will expand our caucus of representatives that choose the side of West Virginians?

You’ll be able to search for those near you by following this link and entering your Zip Code.  

Are you running for office yourself? Do you know a brave candidate who you’d like to encourage to join us? We would love to meet. Don’t hesitate to contact Stephen Smith or Katey Lauer to learn how to join us.

The WV Can’t Wait Candidate Pledge

  1. We won’t take Corporate Cash--we promise to run a people-funded campaign and not to take a penny from Corporate PACs or executives from Big Pharma, Big Energy, or Out-of-State Land Companies.
  2. We will never cross a picket line–we will always choose the side of the people who are working the hardest and bearing the greatest burdens.
  3. We will never hide from a debate–we promise to meet with the public at least once a month, and to do the work of being available to our constituents.
  4. We will never punch down–we promise to remember that our fight is with the wealthy Good Old Boys Club in Charleston, and not with each other. We promise never to blame those who have been hurt for their pain.



We created a movement together, a movement to build a people’s government by and for working people—not millionaires. When we fight each other we lose. When we fight FOR each other, we win.



We have hundreds of volunteers in every corner of the state, and a whole slate of Not-For-Sale candidates running together. It will take 1,000 leaders not 1 to win a West Virginia that works for all of us.