Donald Trump’s presidency is so toxic that there’s a chorus of Republicans who have switched parties. Newly reelected Assemblyman Brian Maienschein is the latest to flee from the GOP and this move could have statewide impact. Maienschein blasted Trump in a statement but added that he’s changed because the “Republican Party has drifted further right.”
This is the real “walk away” movement, you guys.
Before he switched parties, the California state lawmaker was one of only 20 Republicans in the 80-member Assembly, and now this move leaves only 19 Republicans in Sacramento alongside 61 Democrats, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune.
Maienschein, who took on Trump in a statement, added that he has been at odds with the Republican Party and said that he has previously voted across party lines.
“Leaving the Republican Party is not easy. I can either keep fighting to change the Republican Party or I can fight for my constituents. I choose to use my energy and skills for the people I represent,” Maienschein said.
“Donald Trump has led the Republican Party to the extreme on issues that divide our country, but his leadership is not the lone reason for my change in party affiliation. I too have changed. As the Republican Party has drifted further right, I – and my votes – have changed. As a single father to two girls, I am guided by my hopes and dreams for their future.”
Maienschein said that he is at odds with the GOP on key issues such as immigration, health care, gun control, abortion, and gay rights, according to The Hill.
Democrats welcomed Maienschein to the party.
I welcome the addition of Assemblymember @BMaienschein to the Democratic Party.
His legislation, his actions and his presence in the Assembly have always shown him to be a man committed to ideas for making California better, not to ideology that divides us. pic.twitter.com/XQzqkgyamD
— Anthony Rendon (@Rendon63rd) January 24, 2019
Holy moly. Assemblyman Brian Maienschein has left the Republican Party and joined the Democrats. https://t.co/WAoDzOonsK
— Scott Lewis (@vosdscott) January 24, 2019
Republicans didn’t take the news very well.
Absolutely NO SURPRISE here. Of course, he was perfectly happy taking a ton of GOP cash to save his seat in this past election.
— Carl DeMaio (@carldemaio) January 24, 2019
Assembly Republican leader Marie Waldron responded by calling Maienschein a “turncoat.”
“It’s unfortunate that Brian’s takeaway from his extremely close reelection was that his political future depended on becoming a turncoat. Unfortunately, some people run for office simply because they want a job, regardless of political philosophy,” Waldron said in a statement. “It appears that Brian falls into this category.”
“While Brian is enjoying the perks of his new status as a member of the Democrat majority in the Legislature, we Republicans will continue to stand for the people of California,” Waldron added.
On top of the Republicans who have switched parties, there’s a looooong list of Trump administration officials who have found themselves in that crowded revolving door at the White House. I think, and I might be off by one person, that 411 people have left the Trump administration in just two years.
The breeze from that revolving door feels a lot like a ceiling fan at this point.
Featured image via screen capture