Saturday, March 7, 2009

RPV Chairman Frederick Pledges to Fight the Many Calls for His Resignation

Despite calls for his resignation that began practically the week after he was elected chairman of the Republican Party of Virginia last year, Jeff Frederick has managed to stay out of reach of the old guard's grasp.

Chairman Frederick is blamed relentlessly by the neo-conservatives for any failure the GOP suffers right down to a local race as of late.

Some of this surely comes with the territory as Mr. Frederick is the face of the Virginia Republican Party. However, some of the criticism is unjustly heaped upon his back for things that were either well beyond his control or set in motion long before he had an opportunity to affect any change on the inevitable.

As recently as last week, yet another rash of calls for his resignation have spread throughout the blogosphere like a truckload of blank green cards left unguarded in Prince William County. (see here, here, and well commented on here.)

The City of Alexandria GOP committee passed a resolution that called for his removal. Portsmouth and other committees are bringing similar resolutions to a vote at their next meeting citing Frederick's apparent refusal to support Lt. Governor Bill Bolling, and his constant undermining activity toward Speaker Bill Howell.

The current action is that 3/4 of the State Central Committee has jointly signed a letter demanding that Mr. Frederick step down within 30 days.

Frederick is now making calls to garner the 20 or so votes he needs to defeat this.

On one hand you have to admire the guy for fighting for his position like a junkyard dog. He will have to answer to the rumored 10+ allegations that he failed miserably in his first few months of office. This won't be pretty even if he can justify his way out of all of them.

On the other, it's an unpaid position! If 3/4 of your fellow colleagues whom you claim you want to represent — want you gone — one would think it's reasonable to slam the door behind you and get on with your life even if you are proven right in the end. Stubbornness has its place, but this may not be the best time or place to show it.

After all, it's an election year. The Democrats are frothing at the mouth with the notion that they can pick up a few more seats in the House of Delegates, including Frederick's now that he's announced he won't seek re-election of that seat again.

Terry McAuliffe will dump tens of millions of dollars into his campaign, and all down-ticket Dems stand to benefit from this fact if he allows them to ride on his advertising coat tails.

We Republicans may be left full from the meal we just enjoyed 'eating our own' inside a party squabble, but we may well be forgetting that we have a job to do as GOP Party members: FIND GREAT CANDIDATES, RUN GREAT CAMPAIGNS AND WIN ELECTIONS.

If Chairman Frederick were to heed the call of his former supporters who've joined now with the majority of VA party leaders who oppose him, and step down as chairman, we could get on with the business of electing Republicans.

I don't blame him if he wants to defend his alleged failures in fundraising, election loses, and embarrassments on national TV during the last presidential election. But his continued denial of any responsibility, and refusal to step aside at least for the appearance of a fresh start, will come at a cost we voters will all bear of (better) party unity and focus on what's more important than who our party chairman is ... like who our governor, lieutenant governor and attorney general are!

If Frederick remains myopically focused on his chairman's seat and fighting the wind rather than on the best interests of the party at large, then Virginia will surely stay blue this November as no one is currently minding the state store and cash register.

Even CNN is watching this problem, and the Democrats are laughing louder each day it goes on.

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