Fox News reports that West Virginia state Sen. Glenn Jeffries has left the Democratic Party.
Jeffries has been representing the state’s 8th District in the Virginia Senate since January 2017, when he defeated the Republican Chris Walters by over five percentage points.
During those six years, Jeffries has been representing the 8th District as a Democrat.
Now, however, Jeffries is switching parties.
“He no longer identifies with them”
It was the Putnam County Republican Executive Committee that first announced Jeffries’s switch to the Republican Party.
Tony Hodge, the chairman of that committee, who also is the co-chairman of the West Virginia Republican Party, put out a statement, saying, “I warmly welcome Senator Glenn Jeffries into the West Virginia Republican Party.”
Glenn described himself to me as a “conservative,” and we agreed that his policy efforts in the State Senate would be elevated if he joined the majority Republican caucus. Glenn also expressed to me his discomfort with the leftward direction of the Democratic Party and that he no longer identifies with them.
“A better life”
Jeffries, himself, explained his decision during a recent interview with Metro News West Virginia. There, Jeffries said that the decision came down to how he could best serve his constituents.
I look and see how I can best represent the state of West Virginia and my constituents. I never have been a party person. I’ve always been able to work together with whomever it may be. Making this switch is going to help me be more effective as far as recruiting and bringing companies here to this state.
Jeffries went on to say that he “wrestled” with the decision.
Jeffries also released a separate statement, saying:
I have the greatest respect for the many friends and supporters I have been blessed with during my time in public office,” Jeffries said in his announcement today. “I hope to continue and strengthen those relationships going forward. Our politics have gotten so personal and difficult. I want to make sure that I serve constituents and our state in a respectful, thoughtful way that leads to a better life for all West Virginians.
Republicans had a strong showing in the midterm elections in West Virginia. And, this includes victories by several West Virginia Republicans who had already made the switch from Democrat to Republican.
The West Virginia state Senate has 34 members.
With Jeffries now being a Republican, 31 of those 34 members are Republican.