And one wonders whether the "fraud" is not a group which is headed by his former campaign manager. If Chairman Sean's definition of "what services ... citizens require" motivates the goals of AFP, then it is the "fraud." Most of the "services" to which Chairman Sean refers, and that he has refused to limit, are simply vote-buying welfare schemes.
New anti-tax group moves into countyThere's a new anti-tax group in Prince William County and while it's still a small organization, its organizers are promising big efforts in the drive for tax relief.
Americans for Prosperity, a national organization, launched its Prince William branch earlier this month as part of its expansion into Virginia.The organization seeks to bring fiscally responsible government to Virginia, said state director Rob Whitney, who stressed that the non-profit group is bipartisan.
"Just because you're a Republican doesn't mean you're not going to spend money," he said, pointing to state Senate Finance Chairman John Chichester (R-28th), who conservative Republicans blame for recent tax increases. "Party does not necessarily link you to a certain fiscal ideology."
The primary goal of Americans for Prosperity (AFP) is to pass a Taxpayers Bill of Rights in Virginia. Such a law would require a voter approval for any tax increases. It would also limit the amount of revenue that the state government can spend each year and it would require voter approval for those limits to be increased.
Whitney said that such a bill had been introduced in Virginia before but had been voted down in the Senate Finance Committee. "Big shock," he added.
This year, he said, AFP plans to get identical bills introduced into both the House of Delegates and the state Senate. He said that Staunton Del. Chris Saxman (R-20th) is likely to carry the bill in the House. Saxman is the chairman of the state's Cost Cutting Caucus and an initial supporter of the Virginia branch of the AFP.
"There's never been a unified move in the legislature," Whitney said, explaining that the organized push for the Taxpayer Bill of Rights will likely meet with more success than the various contradictory bills usually introduced each year.
Whitney was joined in the Sept. 12 kickoff meeting by seven residents who stopped in to learn more about the new group. Several of those present are members of the county's existing anti-tax group, the Prince William Taxpayers Alliance. Bert Buscher, Gainesville District chairman for the Prince William County Republican Committee, pointed out that the two groups seem to duplicate each other's goals.
Rick Hendrix, chairman of the Taxpayers Alliance, was also at the meeting and he explained that the alliance is a PAC while the AFP is a nonprofit.
"AFP has more money," he joked.
He said it's important to have both organizations because there are many county residents who agree with anti-tax principals but, because of the rift between the Taxpayer Alliance and the county's mainstream Republican organization, won't join the alliance.
That point was underscored by Sean Connaughton (R), chairman of the Prince William Board of County Supervisors, who is constantly at odds with the Taxpayer Alliance.
Connaughton said he supports the AFP and may consider joining. In fact, he said, he encouraged his former campaign manager, Whitney, to take the job as state director for the group.
The difference between the two organizations, Connaughton said, is that "The Taxpayer Alliance is a fraud."
"It looks down the wrong end of the telescope," focusing only on the tax rate without regard to what services and infrastructure citizens require, he said, contrasting it with the AFP.
Americans for Prosperity, he said, wants to make sure "governments stay focused on delivering core services and that they do so without unduly increasing the tax burden."
Denny Daugherty of Gainesville, a member of the Prince William Taxpayer Alliance, said during the AFP meeting that the two groups have very similar goals but function on different levels.
The alliance, like its counterparts around the state, has a local focus while the AFP can reach voters and legislators on a statewide basis.
"What we haven't had in the past ... is a statewide organization," Daugherty said of the alliance. "We were effective in communicating with our local delegates but there were 95 other delegates."
The AFP is aiming to change all that. The group launched its Virginia chapter in the last days of August and followed up quickly by hosting small organizational meetings, like the one in Prince William, throughout the state. In addition to Prince William, groups are now being organized in Virginia Beach, Charlottesville, Harrisonburg and Roanoke.
For more information on Americans for Prosperity, or to join, visit http://www.americansforprosperity.org or call Whitney at (703) 969-9302