UPDATE: Jo-Ann Chase responds[read_more]
Since originally posting this yesterday, I’ve heard from numerous friends that Jo-Ann Chase has been accusing me of “defamation” for what I wrote below. Now, she has finally contacted me. Her words are a veiled threat at a lawsuit, and were intended to convince me to take down the post or to remove her name. She apparently has a history of this…I won’t respond in the same hilarious way that Greg Letiecq did a few years ago.
Instead, I’ll just say that she disputes my characterizations. I’ll leave it for the readers to decide the merits. In the meantime, our email exchange is pasted below in-full:
From: Jo-Ann Chase [REDACTED]
Sent: Wednesday, May 13, 2015 11:46 AM
To: Albertson, Steve [REDACTED]
Subject: Your Recent Posting
Your posting Tuesday includes several inaccuracies. First, I did not actively campaign for David Bell. Second, I have not spread any information about David Ramadan’s membership in the Muslim Brotherhood or his position on Sharia law. As you know, I am a common citizen, not an elected official, and you have made damaging inaccurate statements about me.
I was not in attendance at Monday evening’s LCRC meeting. As such, I was not given the opportunity to respond to any statements or accusations made.
Your credibility as an author hinges on the veracity of your statements. Here, you misrepresentations were quite harmful to me and others. I want you to remove my name from this inaccurate posting before it causes further damages to my family and my business.
You are a member of State Central Committee, and it surprises me that you would engage in this type of attack on a private citizen. I was ounce a member too.
By the way, I am from Puerto Rico and your usage of me as an example in this particular topic is totally inappropriate as my rejection from the LCRC is just another example of “Non-Nativism”.
From: Albertson, Steven [REDACTED]
Sent: Wednesday, May 13, 2015 12:00 PM
To: ‘Jo-Ann Chase’
Subject: RE: Your Recent Posting
First, I have a photos of your yard with the Democrat’s signs in it (and no others), and accounts from several people who say you did campaign for him. Second, I have spoken to a large number of different people (at least 10) who can testify that yes, you have spread malicious falsehoods about Ramadan, his faith, his alleged ties to Islamic radicalism, and how he’s somehow an insidious advance guard for imposition of sharia law in this country. Third, your actions are provably tied to your profile as a public figure. Fourth, you have visibly preyed on people’s prejudices in your opposition to Ramadan, so I frankly don’t care where you come from.
Finally, I will update my post, but I will not remove it. The update will report accurately that you dispute the characterizations I have made. People can decide for themselves whom they believe.
Original Post Published 05/12/15:
Much has been made of the supposed “nativist” tendencies of ordinary conservatives who advocate tighter enforcement of immigration laws and oppose blanket amnesty for illegal immigrants. Shaun Kenney has a truly excellent and thought-provoking piece on this today that is worth the read (seriously…read it).
At bottom, Shaun’s thesis is that there is a nasty undercurrent of racism, or “nativism,” just beneath the surface (and in the case he points out, sometimes bubbling above the surface) of much of the opposition to illegal immigration. He points out, for instance, the dubious claim that 2/3rds of illegal immigration comes from visa overstays, not from illegal border crossings, and that immigration hawks wouldn’t be quite so vigorous in their objections if we were facing a situation where all of our illegal immigrants were from Canada (i.e., if they weren’t brown people).
Many conservatives, as Shaun knows very well, become quite offended when told that their well-reasoned stance on wanting tighter enforcement of immigration laws is based on some sort of irrational phobia of people who look different than them. But, the subject of Shaun’s piece today is one reason why reasonable people can make that mistake: a conservative event in South Carolina where some folks laughed and cheered when an older lady equated illegal immigrants to “rats and roaches in the woodpile.”
Yes, there are people who oppose liberal immigration policies because of racism, and who have done so in ways more hateful and hurtful than this woman in South Carolina and the idiots who whistled and cheered her on. But that does not mean the vast majority of us are like that.
A GOP committee meeting last night in Loudoun County offers up just one anecdote that illustrates that your typical GOP voter isn’t motivated by bigotry.
A woman named Jo-Ann Chase, who is a long-time conservative activist, had applied to become a member of the Loudoun GOP committee. Committee member Eric Johnson rose to challenge the woman’s qualifications to join, given that she had openly supported a Democrat in the 2013 elections.
It seems Chase campaigned actively for Democrat John Bell who was challenging Republican Delegate David Ramadan, who is a successful entrepreneur, a dedicated public servant (who we hope runs for office again soon), and a hard core Republican. Just as importantly, he’s one of the warmest and most engaging personalities in Virginia politics. And oh yeah…he’s an Arab Muslim immigrant from Lebanon.
This doesn’t sit well with Chase. She has apparently been spreading the word that Ramadan is a Muslim (gasp!), as well as the completely vile falsehood that Ramadan is secretly a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, and is working to impose sharia law in Virginia. David Solomon, a supporter of Chase’s, rose to defend her by saying Chase supported John Bell because Delegate Ramadan is Muslim (!!), and repeated the outlandish claim that he’s a member of a Islamist jihadi organization, and a supporter of sharia law.
So, did members of the LCRC begin to whistle and hoot in support of this obvious display of bigotry? No, quite the contrary. They booed Mr. Solomon. When the question of Ms. Chase’s membership application was voted, we’re told that only 2 or 3 supported it, while the other 90+ voting members in attendance voted it down.
It’s a pretty safe bet that most of those people who rejected this display of bigotry in Virginia’s 87th House District are also vigorous opponents of illegal immigration, just like most other conservative activists.
Shaun Kenney’s criticism of the state of immigration politics in the Republican Party is valid…there are some racist jerks in our midst (as there are in the Democrat Party), and we must be mindful of that. But, as at least this single anecdote involving vehement rejection of anti-Arab Muslim bigotry and many other similar illustrations show, such criticism is likely overstated.
[…] utter, hateful garbage. We’ve dealt with this kind of thing before, but it’s really a shame that the first item in their rhetorical toolbox that some of these […]
I ran into Ms Chase at the Richmond convention not too long ago and she was irrationally spreading rumors about one of the LtGovernor candidates saying if elected he was going to build mosques everywhere! I informed her that she should keep her mouth shut and stop spreading false information about a republican candidate. Folks like Ms Chase act like super Christians but are some of the nastiest individuals I have ever met.
At the 2013 Republican Convention, Mrs. Chase chased out several individuals who were registered attendees from Loudoun. She harassed them and was so outrageously rude they simply left. They were non-white, and simply did not belong at a Republican convention according to her.
I admit, I heard this second hand, as I would never sit close enough to her to be able to hear the foolishness coming out of her mouth.
Del. Ramadan has been one of the our best representatives in Richmond from the Northern Va area. It a loss to conservatives that he won’t be in the General Assembly next next year.
I was at the meeting and supported Eric’s motion. If someone doesn’t support their Republican candidate, for whatever their reason, they don’t have to campaign for the democrat. They can just remain silent and not do anything. However, actively supporting the democrat in the immediate prior cycle I think is sufficient grounds for a unit committee to reject a membership application.
As long as you follow the bylaws and Party Plan, a majority of the members present is sufficient grounds to bounce any one you want — must be why our LCRC is so successful, popular and thriving.
Del. R not an actual loss, because he quit in the middle. Best we suffer now than a higher race when consequences would be greater for changing your mind post commitment.
I don’t feel that Delegate Ramadan is very relevant to this discussion. Mrs. Chase openly supported a Democrat over a Republican. THAT is the issue that led to her being voted down for membership to LCRC.
That being said, How is Delegate Ramadan in the middle? He has one of the top ratings for pro-life and pro-gun. He has consistently fought to lessen regulations on businesses and streamline government agencies. He voted against his own party leadership and openly opposed the transportation tax hike. He has introduced legislation on behalf of his district that party leadership didn’t approve of. If you take a look at what he has said, and what he has done, you will find him to be one of the most conservative members of the General Assembly, and quite effective. There are certainly members who toot their own horn more and SEEM more conservative, but if you are not actually getting bills passed into law and making a real difference, what does it matter? I prefer a practical, consistent, conservative leader who knows what it means to be a Republican, not just call himself one.
I don’t think Rocinate said Del. Ramadan was IN the middle, but that he “quit in the middle.”
Rebutting a smear with logic and example is always a worth while effort but the reality is it generally doesn’t accomplish much to those who typically resort to this type of rhetoric as meaningful discourse.
True, but he’s not actually a troll, just a politician, thus can be taught.
Table 4, “Welfare Use of Households With Children by Countries and Regions, 2009” from the 2011 study by Steve Camarota, clearly shows that many immigrants are imposing increasing costs on our welfare system. 75% of the immigrants from Mexico are on some sort of welfare, compared to just 19% of the immigrants from India. Both groups consist primarily of brown-skinned people, and yet, the differences between them in use of welfare programs are vast. Nativism? Schmativism. I would say economic self interest. http://cis.org/immigrant-welfare-use-2011
This handwringing by folks such as Shaun Kenney is deplorable. I am the grandson of four immigrants, but I strongly oppose immigrants who come here to leech off the system. And many of them do, as my next entry clearly shows. The Hispanic Pew Research Center recently published an opinion survey which indicated that 75% of Hispanics want bigger government. And they are getting it. In short, third world immigrants are transforming our country into something that is totally unrecognizable from the America in which I grew up. This has nothing to do with brown skin, because Indian immigrants are brown skinned and they are a plus for this country. I would gladly welcome hundreds of thousands of more of them. Rather, my opposition has to do with the mindset that immigrants brings to our shores. http://www.pewresearch.org/daily-number/hispanics-favor-bigger-role-for-government/
“In short, third world immigrants are transforming our country into something that is totally unrecognizable from the America in which I grew up.”
Not really in short? Not really third world immigrants? Not really transforming? Not really totally unrecognizeable?
Perhaps you’re looking for the words “oh yeah?”
Equally content free.
The quote I referenced is simply not true. That’s what not really means.
C’mon, Brian. You can do better than that! You are a G-D lawyer, for crying out loud. Or, perhaps I am too beneath you for a good old fashioned debate? Please tell me how third world immigrants are not transforming our country when 75% of Hispanics want – and are getting – bigger government. Address the issues I bring up, instead of your trite, liberal-like remarks. You and Bruce are cut from the same cloth. You cannot deal with reality.
Mark, you made a statement that is completely unsupported by facts, and I responded by disbelieving you. If you want to convince me that illegal immigration is making the place you grow up in look like the third world, then you need to back that statement up. Because the evidence in front of my eyes everyday is that you are wrong. So unless you’ve got something more than hyperbole and over-the-top rhetoric, I don’t see why you’re demanding any substantive response.
75% of Hispanics want big government? Citation needed.
Or the rationale and method for bringing so many of today’s immigrants to our shores.
[…] UDPATE: Steve Albertson over at The Bull Elephant responds: […]
Well said. Republicans care little about race and more about policies. Delegate Ramadan did an excellent job of representing our values and was embraced by the GOP. Ironically, the moment he dropped out, the Democrats kicked Jewan Tiwari to the curb and replaced him with a white guy.
And then Delegate R quit after declaring, announcing, campaigning, and soaking up the nomination. In this country, people can still (albeit for now) shoot off their mouths even if it does make them look like idiots.
I find that refreshing and helpful in identifying party movers and shakers.
The Democrats only moved Tiwari into the 87th because they needed SOMEONE to keep Delegate Ramadan busy. Once he decided to step down, they realized they should actually run with someone who was from the area.