On April 29th and 30th, Virginia Republicans will travel to Harrisonburg for the RPV 2016 Quadrennial Convention. While there, they will select the next Chairman of the Republican Party of Virginia. The current RPV Chairman, John Whitbeck, is seeking re-election. Vince Haley, his opponent, gained attention when he ran in a four-way primary for the VA Senate in the 12th District. Both candidates hail from the conservative side of the party.
I am supporting John Whitbeck for RPV Chairman in this race for a very simple reason…his experience and successful performance as Chairman.
When John took over at RPV at the end of 2014, the party was a mess. We had just lost a tight Senate race when other states all over the Country were throwing out incumbent Democrats. The party was nearly a quarter of a million dollars in debt, and the internal fighting was literally tearing the party apart. Establishment consultants were threatening to bankrupt the party because of Eric Cantor’s loss in the primary and conservatives felt abandoned.
Fast forward to today. Chairman Whitbeck has skillfully pulled our party out of debt. Republicans held the Virginia Senate when many pundits were certain we would lose due to numerous retirements in swing districts. Republicans did this even though we faced an onslaught of millions of dollars of out-of-state funding from Bloomberg and McAuliffe. Nobody can say that the internal fighting has stopped, but it has subsided from an angry boil to a slow simmer. Many people who opposed Whitbeck in the beginning now admit he has been a successful chairman.
This success did not come as a surprise. Before he took over at RPV, John was Chairman of the 10th District Republican Committee at the time of Frank Wolf’s retirement. John successfully ran one of the largest Party Canvasses in the history of RPV. By selecting a party run process he was able to limit participation by Democrats and built the 10th District’s email list by over 10,000 emails. He was also the first District Chairman to pass motions opposing the 2012 transportation tax increase.
John Whitbeck spent years working in his local unit and district committees, volunteering and working his way up from the grassroots. Vince Haley’s experience working within the party, on the other hand, is lacking.
Haley has never served as a District Chair.
Haley has never served as a Unit Chair.
Haley has never run a party process (convention, party canvass or mass meeting).
Vince’s experience mainly comes from his work in Washington, DC with policy think tanks and for Newt Gingrich. This is important work, but it doesn’t really translate well into local party leadership.
There are many roles that Vince Haley can and should play in the future of our party, but I don’t believe RPV Chairman is the place for him to start. You wouldn’t hire someone who has never managed a retail store to be the CEO of Walmart, especially if the current CEO is doing a good job. The same philosophy applies here.
John Whitbeck has done an outstanding job as RPV Chairman and should be re-elected.
Mick– Do the Cuckservatives at Bering Drift oppose Whitbeck– are those the political consultants you refer to? If those guys are against Whitbeck, I am for him. Didn’t about half of the guys who work there also work for Cantor? They seemed awfully angry when Cantor lost and have attacked Brat constantly.
So Haley didn’t come up through the state party ranks (you do realize some might consider that an advantage not a negative) is his major flaw and the current Chairman’s experience and tenure in office (rather short in this case) and improving the party’s debt situation are his major positives, if I have this correct. I assume then turning first to Haley that you don’t buy into the political leadership contributions of Ulysses S. Grant (1869-1877), Dwight Eisenhower (1953-1961) or George W. Bush (2001-2009) just to pick three random US Presidents that had a whole lot less “party” experience prior to assuming their roles then even Mr Haley. Regarding current Chairman Whitbeck it would seem to me that running an organization and maintaining it’s positive cash flow is sort of the minimal requirements for the role and turning around unprofitable situations comes with the territory and much like in the private sector you aren’t always handed a great situation and clean up is often as important a skill as financial sustainability for career advancement. Still, I grant you your point there. Yet, there are those pesky other ‘issues” you apparently fail to recall or don’t find as important as do many of the party’s conservative base. A tendency too act autocratically, an impression that a commitment made can’t be counted on to be remembered or fulfilled down the road and the all to seemingly frequent tendency to flounder around in avoidable situations that create reams of bad media publicity for the state party itself. A problem one might recall he had in fact before assuming the chairman’s role but was brushed aside by most as unimportant and not relevant to his promotion into the chair at the time. I believe more then a few would like to hear from him directly on why these impressions are either incorrect or of no concern to his continuance in the job. I’m sure we will get plenty of heart felt endorsements from those that have been provided favors or positions or are expecting future considerations.
Great post. I’m with Whitbeck.
Republicans up to there illegal alien loving tricks.
vote NO on SB483 , fine the lawbreakers ! This is why we need
What does this have to do with the RPV Chairman’s race?
Agreed 100%. John has worked at all levels of the Party and ran as a candidate once too, which gives him additional insight. The amount of improvements at RPV in such a short amount of time is really, really impressive. Getting a 15 point victory in the 10th District was equally impressive. And John is quite conservative too. I don’t think we could possibly get a better Chairman.