Hearing set for case to force WV governor to live in capital

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — Can the governor of West Virginia be forced to live in the state capital? A persistent lawsuit seeking to do just that is heading back to court.

A hearing in the case brought by Democratic Del. Isaac Sponaugle against Republican Gov. Jim Justice is scheduled for Wednesday in Charleston.

Sponaugle says Justice should be ordered to live in Charleston because the state constitution requires the governor to “reside at the seat of government.”

Justice’s lawyers argue that the definition of the word reside is unclear. They’ve also questioned the court’s ability to chaperone Justice’s whereabouts.

Justice has said he lives in Lewisburg, not at the governor’s mansion. He is frequently criticized for not being at the statehouse.

This is the third time Sponaugle has sued over Justice’s residency, with the previous two suits thrown out on technicalities.

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