Whereas it is prescribed by the 8th, 12th, 22d and 26th sections of the 4th article of the constitution, that in certain specified cases the will of the general assembly shall only be determined by the concurrence of different fractional parts, therein named, of the whole number of members elected to each house; and whereas this house, being, by the 9th section of the same article, invested with exclusive jurisdiction to judge of the election, qualification and returns of its members, has declared that vacancies exist in the representation of the counties of Ohio, Preston, Monongalia, Harrison, Marion, Kanawha, Brooke, Hancock, Marshall, Wetzel, Taylor, Upshur, Lewis, Wood, Putnam and Mason, and from the election districts composed of the counties of Ritchie and Pleasants, Doddridge and Tyler, Jackson and Roane, and Randolph and Tucker: And whereas, in consequence of the occupation of said counties by the public enemy, it has been and is impracticable to fill these vacancies, by issuing writs of election in the mode prescribed by the constitution, and this house has determined not to fill said vacancies under the authority conferred by ordinance No. 95 of the convention, so that there are now no members of this body, and may be none during the present session, from any of the counties above named, by reason whereof the number of “members elected” to this house is reduced from one hundred and fifty-two to one hundred and twenty-six: Therefore,
1. Resolved, that this house hereby declares that the whole number of its “members elected,” in the true intent and meaning of the 8th, 12th, 22d and 26th sections of the 4th article of the constitution, to be one hundred and twenty-six, and that, “under existing circumstances,” and until the farther action of this body, a vote of seventy-six members is to be regarded as the three-fifths required under the said 8th section; that a vote of eighty-four members constitutes the two-thirds required under the said 12th section; and that a vote of sixty-four members is the majority required under the said 22d and 26th sections of said 4th article.
2. Resolved further, that it is the true intent and meaning of the 8th section of the 4th article of the constitution, that a majority of each house, constituting a quorum to do business, shall be a majority of the members of each house; and this house having, in the exercise of its exclusive jurisdiction to judge of the election, qualification and returns of its members, determined that the whole number of members of the present house of delegates is one hundred and twenty-six, a majority of said number now constitutes a quorum to do business.
Timeline of West Virginia: Civil War and Statehood: March 1862