Congressman Rob Wittman, who represents America’s First District, has released an open letter today taking a forceful stand against the abusive tactics being employed (to varying degrees of success) at Republican mass meetings around the state. The letter is reprinted in full below.
I commend my Congressman for his clear, principled stand on this where others have vacillated and wavered. Well done, Rep. Wittman!!
Folks, this is how it’s done. This is leadership.
Open Letter to the First District
I am writing to state my strong and unequivocal opposition to the practice of “slating” at our Republican Party local unit mass meetings and conventions. The underlying basis of slating – the purposeful exclusion of certain dedicated activists from our political processes – will spoil any chance to build a conservative Republican Party to be the majority party of Virginia and a home for liberty-minded people to work to reform our government at the local, state, and federal levels.
I applaud the efforts of the grassroots folks – many of whom make America’s First District home – who stood up and fought back against Tammany Hall style machine politics in our Commonwealth. I find it particularly encouraging that when they have been in the majority, the activists who have been the target of these slash-and-burn political tactics have not reciprocated by excluding others, but have instead opted to allow participation by all, as they did last night in Henrico County. It is that kind of dedication to principle that will help build our party for years to come.
We must reject the practice of slating because it is wrong and in the end it is counterproductive to our goal to build a durable majority party based on Constitutional principles and freedom. We all understand that politics is a contact sport. But it is a game we win by addition of people with whom we share common cause, not by serving short-term political goals based on exclusion of those with whom we disagree a fraction of the time. It’s time instead to unite around the universal principles that bind us all together as Republicans, and to end the destructive practice of slating. A political party based on fair play, transparency, and honesty will always win in the end.
Member of Congress