Rep. Jeff Van Drew, a House freshman from New Jersey, is expected to become a Republican. CNN reported that he was losing major support from Democrats in the district and “switching parties would allow Van Drew to avoid a Democratic primary challenge for his seat.”
According to an administration official, he had discussed switching parties in a meeting with Trump at the White House on Friday. Van Drew is one of the two Democrats who voted against formalizing the impeachment inquiry in October. He also announced earlier this month that “he would vote against all articles of impeachment on the House floor.”
Associated Press added that “Van Drew’s decision underscores the pressures facing moderate Democrats from Trump-leaning districts as next week’s impeachment vote approaches.” A senior Democratic aide said that Van Drew has not notified House Democratic leaders about his decision.
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Quip of the Day: “I've heard of rats jumping off a sinking ship, but very few of them jump onto a sinking ship." — Rep. Steve Cohen on New Jersey Democrat’s plans to become a Republican. https://t.co/NljVQedpQM
— Sig Christenson 🏕 (@saddamscribe) December 16, 2019
The senior Democratic aide provided a poll “conducted earlier this month by Van Drew’s campaign showing that by more than a 2-1 margin, people in his district would prefer a different candidate than Van Drew in the Democratic primary and general election.”
Last week, Van Drew denied rumors about him switching parties, but he reaffirmed his plan to oppose impeachment – thus barring new evidence.
“It doesn’t mean that I agree with everything the president may have said or done. It means that I don’t believe that these are impeachable offenses,” said Van Drew.