Apparently the national Republican Party is not the only area of the party where power struggles have been unleashed.
The Virginian Pilot is reporting that many ranking Virginia Republicans are seeking to oust embattled Del. Jeff Frederick, R-Prince William (at left), as chairman of the state GOP. A petition containing a list of grievances was delivered to the state party headquarters in Richmond on Wednesday said several Republican state party officials, who did not want to be identified.
After the jump are highlights of the grievances.
Frederick, who publicly pledged not to seek reelection to the legislature during the just concluded General Assembly session, indicated in a written state this afternoon that he doesn't wish to step down as party chairman. I have every intention of continuing as Chairman and completing my term in May 2012," Frederick said in the statement. " I have the commitments necessary to win the vote on April 4th, and will fulfill my term and the commitment to the people who entrusted me to lead our Party back to victory.
Former attorney general Bob McDonnell, the state Republican Party standard-bearer as the presumptive gubernatorial nominee, endorsed the effort to remove Frederick in a statement Thursday.
Admittedly, Frederick is a real piece of work and recently attacked Charles Darwin on the anniversary of Darwin's birthday, saying Darwin's theories were "used by atheists to explain away the belief in God." Such ravings certainly do not help Bob McDonnell in his efforts to market himself as a moderate (which he is not). Here is a clip of Federick's denunciation of Darwin:
While such views are representative of the true GOP party base today in Virginia, particularly among the Kool-Aid drinkers at The Family Foundation, such views are precisely what scared away moderates and independents in the November 2008 elections and set the stage for Virginia to go Democratic in the presidential race for the first time since 1964. Moreover, the GOP lost three seats in the House of Representatives as well, thereby setting off a round of recriminations as noted by the Washington Post.
But while the Virginia Democratic Party emerges from the elections stronger than it has been in decades, Virginia GOP leaders are dogged by finger-pointing and disorganization as they prepare for the 2009 races for governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general and the state House of Delegates.
On the day after the election, Virginia Republican Party Chairman Jeffrey M. Frederick blamed the presidential campaign of Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) for the party's poor showing in the state on Election Day. ...McCain campaign officials, who declined to be identified because they are not authorized to speak for the senator, said they were left with no choice but to marginalize Frederick and the state party.
"It was just constant drama that surrounded Frederick, and it is quite frankly something the GOP candidates will have to deal with next year," the McCain adviser said.
Inasmuch as no GOP candidates in Virginia can be categorized as gay friendly by any stretch of the imagination, one can only hope that the party civil war will continue and undermine McDonnell's efforts to win the governorship.