Friday, May 24 2013 2:09 PM EDT2013-05-24 18:09:18 GMT
A train derailed at least 13 cars at Bear Creek, shutting down roads and causing a nearby school to evacuate. More >>
A train derailed at least 13 cars at Bear Creek, shutting down roads and causing a nearby school to evacuate.More >>
MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) -
State Sen. Jerry Fielding ended the speculation and rumors Thursday morning by formally announcing that he was joining the GOP.
The addition of Fielding added to the
Republicans' commanding supermajority in the Alabama Senate. The
breakdown of the chamber now consists of 23 Republicans, 11 Democrats,
and one Independent.
Fielding said he had contemplated the move for months and said he no longer identified with the national Democratic Party.
"I don't stand for same-sex marriage,
abortion and gun control, and you definitely don't have to ask me three
times if I want God to be included in my party's platform," Fielding
said in a statement released prior to the announcement. "I couldn't sit
by and watch the Democrat Party adopt such an extremely liberal agenda."
Fielding was referring to the controversy
over the Democratic Party Agenda that was adopted at the Democratic
National Convention in Charlotte last month.
Earlier in the week, the Chairman of the
Alabama Democratic Party preempted Fielding's announcement with a
statement scolding the lawmaker who represents parts of Elmore, Coosa,
and Talladega Counties.
Chairman Mark Kennedy wrote in a statement that Fielding was turning his back on the district that elected him.
"The bottom line is that Jerry Fielding
buckled under the pressure of the Republican supermajority that is out
to drive every white Democrat out of office" Kennedy said.
Fielding is in his first term as a State Senator. He had served previously for 26 years as a District Judge.