MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (AP) — West Virginia Republicans have a new party leader.

Charleston lawyer Mike Stuart was elected chairman of the party Saturday. He defeated former chief Doug McKinney 74 to 45 in voting at the state Republican Executive Committee meeting in Morgantown.

Stuart says he wants to increase the party’s presence across the state and to make it more accountable besides working to elect GOP candidates.

Stuart is a member of Steptoe & Johnson and president of the West Virginia Conservative Foundation.

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