Sen. Amanda Chase leaves caucus after Norment elected as Senate minority leader

HARRISONBURG, Va. -- State Sen. Amanda Chase (R-Chesterfield) announced Thursday she will not caucus with Republicans in 2020 following Sen. Thomas Norment (R-James City) being elected as the senate minority leader, his fourth term as Senate Republican leader.

“Our Commonwealth has come to a crossroads. The GOP Senate leadership has failed to lead and new leadership is required. I have presented my concerns to the leadership and they have been dismissed. If that means me breaking away from the caucus so be it,” Chase wrote on Facebook.

A caucus is a meeting of supporters or members of a specific political party or movement, according to Ballotpedia.

Chase noted that she is still a Republican but can no longer continue to support Norment as the leader of the Senate Republican leader and it’s time for new leadership and new ideas.

"If we continue down the same path under the same leadership it will not be good for the Commonwealth, as it has just been proven by a complete party flip of the Senate and the House," said Chase in a statement.

"I am a Republican, always have been and always will be," added Chase. "I don’t need a caucus to do the work of the people. The people voted me back in and I’ll continue fighting for the Commonwealth."

Chase says she will still have an (R) by her name, but will no longer be “under the thumb of the Good’ol boy regime.”

Norment released a statement Friday morning saying members of the Virginia Senate Republican Caucus are “disappointed” by Chase’s decision.

“While we respect her right to make this decision, the people of Amelia, Chesterfield, and Colonial Heights voted to be represented by a Republican in the Senate. Now, they will not be.

Senator Chase fully participated in the Caucus leadership elections held yesterday.  She was given every opportunity to voice any concerns she may have had and to nominate any candidates for leadership she might have preferred, herself included.  She neither nominated any candidate nor proposed any candidate for any leadership position.

While her Republican colleagues are disappointed by Senator Chase’s decision, we will continue to work in the best interests of the Commonwealth to advance a responsible conservative agenda for Virginia.”

Chase responded to the Virginia Senate Republican Caucus on Facebook Friday afternoon.

“I don’t need a caucus to do the work of the people. The people voted me back in and I’ll continue fighting for the Commonwealth. I’m NOT leaving the GOP, just the caucus,” she wrote.

Stay with CBS 6 for the latest on this developing story.

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