Democrat Tim Miley is the new speaker of West Virginia’s House of Delegates.
The Harrison County lawyer was elected during a brief special session Tuesday.
Miley earlier won the backing of rival candidate and Finance Chair Harry Keith White.
House Republicans nominated Minority Leader Tim Armstead of Kanawha County.
The Democrats’ majority is slim, at 54 of 100 seats. Democratic Delegate Ryan Ferns of Ohio County voted for Armstead. But three GOP delegates were absent.
Miley succeeds Rick Thompson, who resigned the Legislature to join Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin’s Cabinet.
The Wayne County Democrat stepped down over the weekend to become secretary of Veterans’ Assistance.
Tomblin appointed retired banker Timothy Kinsey on Tuesday to Thompson’s House seat.
Miley will preside until the end of 2014.