CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- State Democrats' annual Jefferson-Jackson fundraising dinner, originally scheduled for this Saturday at the Charleston Civic Center, has been postponed to Nov. 2.
"Everybody's tied up in Washington," Jacob Winowich, executive director of the West Virginia Democratic Party, said.
The federal government has been partially shut down since last week, after Congress failed to pass a budget.
Leaders are currently at a standstill, but Democrat members of the state's congressional delegation will remain in Washington just in case something breaks loose. The shutdown also would have made it difficult for the party's keynote speaker, Vice President Joe Biden, to make the trip to Charleston.
This year's dinner will be a tribute to longtime Sen. Jay Rockefeller, who announced last year he planned to retire at the end of his current term.
"It's a very fitting to have the largest (Jefferson-Jackson Dinner) be about our senior senator," Winowich said.
"Sen. Rockefeller's been a delegate, a VISTA volunteer, a secretary of state, governor and a U.S. senator ... not to mention president of a local college. This guy's devoted 50 years of service to the state."
Winowich said tickets for the Oct. 12 dinner will be accepted at the Nov. 2 event. Tickets are still available at www.wvdemocrats.com, or by calling 304-342-8121.
Individual tickets are $75, while tables of 10 can be reserved for $1,200. A JFK membership package - which includes two tickets to the dinner and admission to the JFK reception - will be $1,000.
Attendees also can pay $50 to send Rockefeller a message, which will be displayed on a screen throughout the evening.
Democrats also had to delay the 2012 Jefferson-Jackson Dinner after a freak October snowstorm caused by Hurricane Sandy tore down trees and power lines around the state.