West Virginia Supreme Court hears governor’s residency case

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FILE – In this Jan. 8, 2020, file photo, West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice delivers his annual State of the State address in the House Chambers at the state capitol in Charleston, W.Va. The former West Virginia public health leader forced out by the governor says decades-old computer systems and cuts to staff over a period of years had made a challenging job even harder during a once-in-a-century pandemic. Republican Gov. Jim Justice demanded Dr. Cathy Slemp’s resignation on June 24. (AP Photo/Chris Jackson, File)

CHARLESTON, WV (AP) — An attorney for West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice argues that in a residency requirement case that the state’s highest court shouldn’t be involved in deciding where the governor spends his nights.

Members of both parties at the statehouse have previously criticized the Republican billionaire for living in Lewisburg, about 100 miles from the capital in Charleston. A Democratic lawmaker brought a lawsuit that is now before the state Supreme Court.

Both sides have competing interpretations of the state Constitution’s clause that states the governor “shall reside at the seat of government.”

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