Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Frederick and Hager Battle over GA Endorsements

I just got an email from RPV Chairman John Hager addressing an email that Jeff Frederick sent out listing General Assembly endorsements. Apparently, Frederick listed members of the GA that are actually supporting Hager. Hager specifically lists Senators Vogel, Stuart and Wager as mentioned by Frederick, but supporting him.

How does a mistake like this happen? It's hard to imagine a candidate for any office doing this on purpose, knowing you will be caught. Maybe it speaks more to the disorganization of the Frederick campaign?

Below is the Hager email. I don't have Frederick's. Maybe a reader could post it?

A number of you have called and expressed some shock and dismay at an email that Jeff Frederick sent out yesterday. In his email he listed endorsements of some members of the General Assembly.
There was only one problem - Jeff didn't bother to check with them first. Many of the people on the list are supporters of mine. In fact, at least two of them had already told him that they would not support him.
For the last few weeks, I have listened to accusations from Jeff Frederick about my leadership, the staff at RPV, the district leaders that support my reelection, and my allegiance to this party. Each of his accusations is laughable, and we dismissed them as his typical rant. But when he is willing to blatantly mislead Republicans in Virginia by claiming false endorsements, enough is enough.
Senators Vogel, Stuart, and Wagner are just a few of the individuals that my opponent misused their names. They have all confirmed that they are with me. They know how hard we have worked to elect Republicans. They know that the last thing we need at this critical time is on the job training.
The Republican Party had some problems that I addressed as soon as I became Chairman. We are now stronger than ever and ready to face the Democrats. We are financially secure. We have a successful communications strategy that emphasizes the unity of the Republican Party. I have negotiated that the Coordinated McCain RNC/RPV Victory Campaign for Virginia be run out of our offices, unlike previous years. We are identifying new Republican voters across the state and passing the information to District and Unit Chairs to increase the Republicans in our party.
For anyone to say that we have failed, is an insult to every hard working Republican in Virginia.
I look forward to continuing to work for you in the future.
John Hager


Anonymous said...

How did you get on that list? Can you post the text of the email?

IFC said...

Vogel and Stuart apparently supported Jeff until Hager put lots of pressure on them.

Anyway, here's Jeff's response:

Dear Fellow Virginia Republican:

I make mistakes sometimes. I'm not too big of a person to admit it.

In our last email update, we mentioned some of my endorsements from members and recent members of the General Assembly. All but two of those legislators had signed a letter endorsing me -- but due to a clerical error, the names of Senators Vogel and Stuart were included on the public list, and they had not in fact signed that endorsement letter. I called both and apologized to them for the error well before John Hager sent out an email on the matter.

However, I have a signature from every other legislator on the list endorsing my candidacy.

Senator Wagner not only committed to support me, but put his endorsement in writing. Click here to see the signatures of Frank Wagner and all of the other legislators who've signed on (so far) to endorse me. I challenge John Hager to release a copy of the signatures those he is claiming that support him.

The reason Wagner switched from supporting me to supporting John Hager, I believe, would give many Republican activists all the more reason to back our campaign.

You may recall in my last email update, I mentioned how I spoke before the Senate GOP caucus and was asked if I, as state Party Chairman, would support all Republican incumbents.

I responded by saying that I don't think it's the party's job to get involved in nomination contests. Rather, it's our job to support all Republicans, especially our nominees, and make sure those nominees are ultimately elected in November.

While this wasn't the answer to secure me a lot of endorsements, I believe it was the correct answer.

I think it also illustrates how I can be an independent Chairman, notwithstanding the fact that I am a member of the legislature -- and that I'll look out for the best interests of the Party, not necessarily incumbents.

So, given my answer, Senator Wagner wrote me about a week ago to withdraw his endorsement as a result of my response to that question about supporting incumbents.

Senator Wagner and I have a disagreement over this issue. When we spoke recently about his letter, he said that he can't support anyone that does not share his view on this subject.

I can't say whether or not John Hager now has the support of Frank Wagner. If he does, though, then that would indicate that John Hager believes that it is RPV's role from Richmond to tell the grassroots who they should or should not support in intra-party races, and that RPV should spend precious party time and resources -- not beating Democrats -- but ensuring that incumbents remain entrenched.

Of course, this view is typical of the top-down approach John Hager has been advocating for our state party, and why we need bold, new leadership there.

It's time to end this Richmond-knows-best mentality and get back to building and strengthening our party by building and strengthening the grassroots. Strong grassroots mean a strong Republican Party. When we accomplish this, then, we'll start winning again.

Best --


Steven said...

Hager writes, "For anyone to say that we have failed, is an insult to every hard working Republican in Virginia."'s OK to fail (losing the Senate, losing much of our majority in the House, losing basically any foothold in NoVA, etc.), but it's an insult to actually SAY so.

This guy clearly needs to be retired. Maybe he can go to work for Mark Warner again.

Speaking of endorsements, Hager actually served Mark Warner in his cabinet, and went for over two and a half years refusing to endorse fellow Republicans out of supplication to his pal. Is this the guy we want running the party at a time when Warner is again going to be at the top of the Dems' ticket? I think not.

stating the obvious said...

Wow, if that isn't a response from the Frederick camp then I don't know what is. ifc, you shouldn't ever blindly support somone-if in fact you really are just a "supporter". Now, if you're on staff, which I would assume that you are, then I would tone down the "facts" that you are throwing around-seems a little too contrived to be an average blow joe.

stating the obvious said...

'Steven' gets thrown into that category too

Steven said...

Stating the Obvious:

I believe ifc was just posting an email circulated by the Frederick team. For me, I think you really are stating the obvious when you say I am in the Frederick "camp," though no, I am not on his staff (nor have I ever been). I live in an adjoining county (Stafford) and have watched him since he first knocked off an establishment type Republican a few years ago in the primary race for his HoD seat (Jack Rollison). I'm enthusiastic that he's going to do the same thing to Hager. I think the whole party organization is a little too comfortable with mediocrity, and with the idea of going quietly into permanent minority status. Frederick isn't. He'll be energetic where the current organization is lethargic. He's on the Governor's hit list, whereas Hager is pretty chummy with that crowd. So, I don't think I'm "blindly" supporting him. My reasons are clear.

stating the obvious said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
stating the obvious said...

Well I don't see that we are moving quietly into the minority at all. I find it funny that Frederick is willing to state that Hager has done a poor job in his 9 mos as Chairman. I would like to see Frederick do any better. The caveat would be that if Frederick were chairman then he would have held that office an entire year longer than Hager going into the 2009 elections, meaning more time to make a real difference and to raise money.

Frederick has continually been one of the least effective Delegates, and it's not because he doesn't put out enough bills-or even good ones for that matter (there have been a few wonderful ones), but he doesn't play well with others at all. He's expects everyone to see his "greatness" as much as he does, and with that aire about him and his unwillingness to "play" politics he ends up with more enemies than friends. How can we expect him to do any better as the party chairman...the one person that's supposed to bring us all together?

You notice that Frederick says the same thing every year without fail, that the Governor is out to get him-he's at the top of the Governor's hit list, etc. How is it that a Delegate that doesn't get that much done for the Republican party constantly end up on the Governor's hit list? Some would say because of the seat that he holds-well that is true but look at his opponent this year...the guy didn't campaign and the guy was a no-name candidate with no real leg to stand on. You didn't see the Governor's people coming into the district in support of Frederick's opponent as much as you would think for being the top of the Governor's hate list. Or even putting up a stronger candidate against him.

I just think that Frederick is a lot of hot air, he likes himself more than he does the party, and that he really isn't going to bring about the change that all of us are really wanting.

Give Hager a chance to serve an entire term, and then hold him accountable.

yoder said...

I signed up to be a delagate and will be voting for Jeff. This party needs young, smart leaders to bring us back.