by Christina Karaoli Taylor
6:14 PM CST, January 14, 2013
Jean Schodorf is a private citizen now but she says she's had enough of the Republican Party. That's why she decided to switch.
"I know it's the right choice," Schodorf says of her decision to become a Democrat. "I believe a long time ago the Republican Party lost touch with the people."
Schodorf represented the Republican Party for 12 years in the Kansas Legislature. She was voted out in the 2012 Republican primary after she lost to Wichita City Council member Michael O'Donnell.
That happened as a new wave conservatives were elected in the legislature, whose 2013 session began Monday. Schodorf - who's been considered a moderate - became disenchanted with the Republican Party, believing it no longer includes moderate voices.
"For some reason they didn't want people to be a part of the Republican Party that perhaps didn't agree with all of the platform."
Even though she's no longer an elected official, Schodorf is staying politically active. She just launched a new blog with former Senator Dick Kelsey who was also ousted in the 2012 Republican primary.
Schodorf says "Our Kansas Voices" blog will be a place for moderates to give their opinions and present solutions to problems in Kansas.
"We need compromise and people to work with each other," she says. "I hope to be able to make recommendations for education and education funding."
Schodorf says the Democratic Party has welcomed her and she looks forward to working within it.
"I want the best of Kansas and I believe this is the right decision," she says.
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