California GOP Lawmaker From San Diego Switches Parties, Criticizes Trump
Thursday, January 24, 2019
Credit: Associated Press / Rich Pedroncelli
A moderate California Republican state lawmaker is switching parties while criticizing President Donald Trump's policies and leadership.
Assemblyman Brian Maienschein of San Diego announced Thursday that he is becoming a Democrat, saying he and the Republican Party have moved in different directions since he was elected in 2012.
He says Trump has led the party "to the extreme."
Maienschein says he differs with the Republican Party on immigration as well as health care, gun control, abortion and gay rights.
He has sometimes voted with Democrats on environmental and human services legislation. His defection gives Democrats an overwhelming 61 votes in the 80-member Assembly.
Tony Krvaric, chairman of the Republican Party of San Diego County, said in a statement that Maienschein should resign.
"Brian Maienschein has shown himself to be the absolute worst kind of politician; someone making decisions based on politics instead of principles," Krvaric said. "By running for re-election as a Republican he was making a statement about who he was and now he is switching parties for self-preservation and political games."
Assemblyman Brian Maienschein said he differs with the Republican Party on immigration as well as health care, gun control, abortion and gay rights.
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