Rep. Cheokas joining GOP

ATLANTA – Another state legislator is switching sides.

State Rep. Mike Cheokas of Americus is joining the House Republican Caucus and resigning from the House Democratic Caucus.

“I made this decision in careful consultation with members of my community after being approached by many of them and hearing their thoughts,” Cheokas said in a news release. “As a member of the House since 2004, I have been driven to best represent the needs and interests of my constituents at the State Capitol in Atlanta. My fiscally conservative voting record reflects that effort and the views of my constituents, which ultimately led me to join the House Republican Caucus.”

There are now114 Republicans, 63 Democrats and one independent in the state House. There are also a pair of vacant seats — following the death of Rep. Tony Sellier, R-Fort Valley, and  the appointment of Rep. Mark Williams, R-Jesup, to serve as commissioner of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources.

“Mike Cheokas is a principled leader who has demonstrated courage in putting the interests of his district ahead of political party,” House Speaker David Ralston said in a news release. “He will be a valuable and important member of our team, committed to an agenda that is focused on creating jobs and providing economic opportunities for Georgians.”

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