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Democratic and Republican party leaders trade jabs over controversial party switch

State Democratic and Republican party leaders continue to fight over the recent party switch by a Michigan state representative.

State Democratic Party chairman Mark Brewer delivered a letter today to State House Speaker Jase Bolger’s Kalamazoo office demanding he reveal more about his role in the party switch of state representative Roy Schmidt.

Schmidt surprised Democratic Party leaders when he abruptly switched to the Republican party at the primary election filing deadline.  That left Democrats without a chance to get someone to challenge Schmidt in November.

Brewer accuses the State House Speaker of using state resources in facilitating the party switch.   Bolger denies any wrongdoing.  But Brewer says the State House Speaker should release more information about his role in the party switch.

 “The first step is disclosure….transparency…let people know what your role was…and we can take it from there,” says Brewer.

A Bolger spokesman says the House Speaker has nothing more to add to what he’s already said about the party switch.   The spokesman accuses Democrat Brewer of “desperate antics to take the spotlight off of his own failed leadership.”

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Public since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting.
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