President Donald Trump touched down in the great state of West Virginia for a rally event on Thursday, and he teased a big announcement for the capacity crowd in attendance.
Word started to leak out prior to Trump hitting the stage, and the commander-in-chief wasn’t just blowing smoke.
The Independent Journal Review passes along the details on what the big news was.
Jim Justice, West Virginia’s Democratic governor, is leaving his party. His plan, join the Republicans.
Governor Justice’s announcement:
“Like it or not like it, but the Democrats walked away from me. Now today I will tell you, with lots of prayers and lots of thinking. Today, I tell you as West Virginians, I can’t help you anymore being a Democrat governor. So tomorrow I will be changing my registration to Republican.”
Reaction flowed in fast and furious on social media. Unsurprisingly, that reaction fell along party lines.
Jim Justice just made the worst political move of the century, maybe ever.
CONGRATS GOVERNOR! https://t.co/HWkpcBPHxp
— Kevin D. Grüssing (@KevDGrussing) August 3, 2017
Jim Justice switching to GOP makes sense:
-Trump won WV by 42 %
-Was GOP in 2015
-Approval ratings sliding
-Bonus: bad for Manchin
— Garrett Ventry (@GarrettVentry) August 3, 2017
As the above poster references, Justice left the GOP after announcing his run for governor in 2015.
When Justice threw his hat into the governor’s race, Democratic leadership praised his decision, via the Huffington Post:
“The DGA welcomes Jim Justice to the West Virginia governor’s race,” said Elisabeth Pearson, executive director of the DGA. “Jim Justice is a strong candidate with a record of creating jobs for working families and investing in West Virginia communities. We are confident that Democrats will keep the West Virginia governor’s office in 2016.”
We would assume the confidence that Democrats felt back then has been replaced by panic.
Either way, such an announcement is not good news for the Democratic Party, who only have 15 governors to the Republican’s 34. Most West Virginians probably don’t have an issue with his switch, either. In the November election, Trump clobbered Hillary Clinton in the Mountain State.
The Democrat Governor’s Association released a scathing statement against Justice’s character:
“Jim Justice deceived the voters of West Virginia when he ran as a Democrat 8 months ago,” said DGA Executive Director Elisabeth Pearson. “West Virginians have learned that they simply can’t trust Jim Justice. He will always put his financial interests above the needs of West Virginians.
“As Republicans have repeatedly said, Jim Justice owes millions of dollars in unpaid company taxes, after a deal with a Russian coal company. The debts have only worsened during Justice’s term as governor. If President Trump cut a deal, we hope it does not put U.S. taxpayers on the hook to bail out Jim Justice’s personal finances.”
Comically, Democratic leaders continue to present themselves as the party of choice for the majority of people in the country. As with the overwhelming majority of the Left’s claims, that simply doesn’t jibe with reality.
Outside of the big cities and other parts of the liberal echo chamber, the Democratic party as a whole is clearly on the ropes. That’s partially what’s led to the anti-Trump platform they continually tout, but informed voters know that’s not an actual platform.
That may play well with the base, but acting childish and disruptive will do absolutely nothing to close the widening gap in the minds of voters.