MetroNews coverage of WVEA statement on Justice

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MetroNews coverage of WVEA statement on Justice
By Jeff Jenkins, WV MetroNews

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The West Virginia Education Association still supports Gov. Jim Justice, according to union president Dale Lee.

Lee said he’s met with the governor since he changed his party affiliation from Democrat to Republican and Justice remains behind the union’s priorities.

“He desires to make public education a centerpiece for economic development. He understands the plight that we are in in terms of teachers and teachers positions,” Lee said.

The WVEA-PAC endorsed Justice in last year’s primary and general elections.

Lee said the switch is “perplexing” but the WVEA’s endorsement is not based on party affiliation.

“It’s not a matter of ‘D’ or ‘R’, it’s a matter of what your philosophies are toward education. That’s why we endorsed him to begin with and that’s why after the discussion with him we’re still standing behind the governor,” Lee said.

Lee said he’s hoping Justice can bring along more support from Republican members of the House of Delegates and state Senate and he’s hopeful some key members of the governor’s staff will keep working for him.

“I would hope that everyone sees that we’re trying to move West Virginia forward and it goes beyond the party, it goes with what’s best for West Virginia,” Lee said.