Second GOP lawmaker in a week turns Democrat

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - Already in firm control of the Kentucky House, Democrats have swayed the second GOP lawmaker in a week to switch political sides.

Rep. Melvin Henley, of Murray, said Friday he left the Republican Party to become a member of the state Democratic Party. Henley's conversion gives the Democrats a 63-37 lead in the
Kentucky House.

"This has been a spectacular week for the House majority and for the House Democrats," Speaker Jody Richards, D-Bowling Green, said. "We started out the week with 61 members and finished the week with 63. I'm just real excited about it."

Earlier in the week, state Rep. Milward Dedman Jr., of Harrodsburg, announced he was leaving the GOP to return to the Democratic Party. Both have been House members since 2005.

Richards said neither representative was promised anything in exchange for their switch. But, Richards said, the moves would likely help residents in their respective districts.

Henley, who represents a predominantly Democratic area in far western Kentucky, said he felt he needed to join the majority in
the House to better represent his constituents. Henley said his switch "had nothing to do with party" but centered on the upcoming two-year budgets that lawmakers will begin forging early next year.

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  • by Shane Location: Lawrenceburg on Sep 16, 2007 at 04:37 PM
    I don't trust anyone who changes parties when it looks like that incumbents will lose in 2 months. That person has no morals or ideals, they just want to keep their cush job as a state representative. Milward Dedman represents me, and although I'm a Democrat, I will not vote for him in the next election because he is a Republican at heart, which contradicts the ideals I believe in.
  • by steve Location: irvine on Sep 15, 2007 at 09:44 PM
    thats good we need to get rid of all the blue bloods anyway.
  • by Diane Location: Mt. Sterling on Sep 15, 2007 at 03:55 PM
    I don't blame him. The democrats are so mean spirited and hateful toward Republicans that they can't hope to accomplish anything. They pass laws that will only benefit them or keep them in power. If you're a Republican you can't hope to help anyone or make any decision without getting attacked or libeled by the press or the democrats. They will come back into power because of this mentality then tax us to oblivion through policy and gambling. And the media will play right along until we are once again a progressively backward state.
  • by a voter Location: carlisle on Sep 15, 2007 at 03:16 PM
    If Bush & Chenny would step down from the gop I think there polls would go up. That would be the only way they would have a higher rating.


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