From Democrat to Republican: West Virginia Gov. Switches Parties at Trump Rally

Amanda Casanova | Contributor | Friday, August 4, 2017

From Democrat to Republican: West Virginia Gov. Switches Parties at Trump Rally

The Democratic governor of West Virginia announced at President Donald Trump’s rally in the state that he is switching to the Republican Party.

"Today, I tell you as West Virginians, I can't help you anymore being a Democrat governor," Jim Justice said. "So tomorrow, I will be changing my registration to Republican."

Earlier in the day, Trump had said there would be a “big announcement” at the rally in Huntington, West Virginia.

He said he supported Justice for “show(ing) the country our agenda rises above left or right.”

During the presidential election, Justice did not endorse Clinton in the general election and was an outspoken supporter of Trump’s own support of West Virginia’s coal miners.

Justice, like Trump, is a billionaire. He is the only billionaire in the state, according to ABC News. He also is close to the family and reportedly went fishing and hunting with Donald Trump Jr. at Justice’s property in May.

This is Justice’s second time to switch parties. He was a registered Republican before he switched to the Democratic Party before his run for governor in 2015.

“Jim Justice deceived the voters of West Virginia when he ran as a Democrat eight months ago," said Democratic Governors Association Executive Director Elizabeth Pearson.

West Virginia GOP Chairman Conrad Lucas said in a statement, however, they are ready to work with Justice.

“We look forward to Governor Justice reflecting the conservative values of our Party and platform,” he said.


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Publication date: August 4, 2017