Party-switching state rep makes GOP history in Missouri

In a move that I hope that Senator Joe Manchin notices, Missouri State Representative Linda Black announced this week that she was switching her party affiliation to the Republicans. The GOP had already won a record 117 seats out of 163 , and Rep. Black pushes that record even higher, to over 72% of the body.

Kevin R. Jenkins of The Daily Journal Online reports:

District 117 State Representative Linda Black of Desloge dropped a bombshell at the state capitol Wednesday when she announced at a news conference that she is switching to the Republican Party after an election in which the GOP built upon its already large majorities.

Black was unopposed when she was re-elected Tuesday to a fourth and final term in the Missouri House.

Like Senator Manchin, Rep. Black found herself in a party that had moved away from the principles she held:

"It's been a joke around the capitol with Republicans for quite a while that I needed to go ahead and join their party because I was already voting with them on so many issues," she said.

The main reason Black said she is switching parties is because she found it increasingly difficult to square her social and moral beliefs with those of the Democratic Party.

"I have differed with the Democrat Party on many issues and have always been supportive of traditional marriage and Second Amendment rights," she said. "I've always been able to work well with [Republicans]."

Black said she thought long and hard about the implications of switching parties at the start of her final two-year term in the House.

"I asked myself, 'do I want to work with the majority and get things accomplished or do I want to stay with the Democrat Party and disagree with 90 percent of everything they came up with?'" she said.

Fair questions for Senator Manchin to ponder.

Rep. Black is term-limited, and so this fourth term of hers will be her last in the State House of Representatives. No word on her future political plans.

Hat tip: Weasel Zippers