November 18, 2004


State representative plans to switch parties (Mark Niquette and Lee Leonard, November 18, 2004, The Columbus Dispatch)

A western Ohio Democrat who garnered national attention in 2000 when he became the youngest House member in state history at age 18 says he is joining the Republican caucus.

Rep. Derrick Seaver of Minster in Auglaize County, now 22, said he plans to make the switch official at a news conference today with Ohio GOP leaders. Seaver declined to discuss his reasons until then.

It is the first time in recent memory that a state representative has switched caucuses.

Seaver, who was unopposed for re-election as a Democrat two weeks ago, campaigned for President Bush and said he "felt more at home in the Republican Party," said Rep. Jon Husted, R-Kettering, the incoming speaker.

Husted said Seaver, a conservative Democrat, approached him during the summer and said he was considering switching parties.

"I told him we would welcome him," Husted said.

By joining the GOP caucus, Seaver gives the Republicans a 60-39 advantage in the House. That could be significant because 60 votes are needed to override a veto or to place a constitutional amendment on the statewide ballot.

Rather amusing that the pivotal battleground of the nation, OH, is 60-40, no?

Posted by Orrin Judd at November 18, 2004 10:25 AM

And the Senate is 22 - 11. Also Governor is a Republican. If it follows Floridas was it won't be a squeaker in 2008.

The squeaker of 2000, Florida shows Reps 84-36 (up from 81-39) in the House and 26-14 in Senate. (With any good Rep candidate aganist him, Bill Nelson is toast in 2002.)

Good site:

Posted by: Moe from NC at November 18, 2004 11:24 AM

Things in OH will improve dramatically once Kenneth Blackwell shoves Bob Taft off-stage.

Posted by: jim hamlen at November 18, 2004 11:51 AM

Moe - the word right now is that Jeb Bush won't challenge Nelson and that most of the names mentioned are small fry. Florida should be a prime GOP pickup opportunity in '06 that hopefully the GOP won't screw up.

Posted by: AWW at November 18, 2004 12:28 PM

Dems think party switching is great fun when they benefit. It ain't quite so funny when the shoe's on the other foot...

Posted by: M. Murcek at November 18, 2004 1:05 PM

If the GOP coalesces early around a candidate even a mediocrity like Harris, Nelson will lose.

Blackwell would be an interesting choice on a national ticket were he to be Ohio's next governor.

Posted by: Bart at November 18, 2004 1:15 PM