The next four years belong to Democratic Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin. He is one capable guy, and has been a key contributor to needed changes in West Virginia for a long time.
But he faces a changing electorate. The same voters who put him in the governor's office over Republican challenger Bill Maloney also sent 11 more Republicans to the House of Delegates.
The insistently pro-economic-growth party now holds 46 seats in the lower chamber. It must mean something.
Here's a guess: Many West Virginians want the more rapid economic improvement that Maloney championed. But many also think Tomblin, as skilled in politics as Maloney is in industrial engineering, is better equipped to deliver it.
Certainly the governor started off on the right note, inviting a dozen ranking Republican delegates and senators to lunch as the November interim meetings came to a close last week.
It's a small thing, but reaching out and listening is always a good beginning.