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New WVa GOP lawmaker sworn in to fill empty seat

June 15, 2022 GMT

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — A 2020 graduate of West Virginia University was sworn in as the newest member of the state House of Delegates on Wednesday after the seat’s previous occupant resigned earlier this month.

Jarred Cannon, a Republican who lives in Hurricane and owns the public relations firm Athena Consulting, is now representing the state’s 22nd District, which includes a group of counties near Charleston. Cannon was appointed by Gov. Jim Justice to fill the post of former Del. Joe Jeffries, who resigned on June 1 to take a job in Florida. Cannon will serve the remainder of Jeffries’ term, which ends Nov. 30.

Jeffries, also Republican, became ensnared in controversy last year when he posted a lewd video on the social media platform TikTok. In the video, he offers sexual advice to women. The video was posted directly after a legislative session where Jeffries sponsored legislation forbidding “the teaching of sexuality in public schools.”

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Following the incident, Jeffries was stripped of his committee assignment and called an “embarrassment” by House Speaker Roger Hanshaw.

In a statement Wednesday, Cannon described his appointment to the Legislature as “an incredible honor.”

“I am ready to get to work with the Governor and legislative leadership on day one to help make West Virginia the best place in the country to live, work, and raise a family,” he said.

Cannon serves on the board of the Ohio-West Virginia Youth Leadership Association and is an organizer for Camp Lincoln, a conservative youth leadership program held at Camp Caesar in Cowen, West Virginia.