Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Pat O'Leary Responds

Below, I posted about a new controversy regarding the 51st District Convention, and how the Elections Committee Chairman, Ruth Griggs, was selected by the Lucas campaign. Pat O'Leary has posted the response below to an anonymous comment posted in response to it:
I would like to provide some insight into the selection of Ruth Griggs and the other committee chairman at the 51st Legislative District Republican Convention. After I agreed to serve as the Convention Chairman, Tom Kopko and I decided to convene a meeting with representatives of both campaigns to organize the Convention. The meeting was held on May 14, 2007. About 7 or 8 people from the Lucas campaign and two people from the Gill campaign attended.
After addressing issues associated with receiving the registration forms, we moved onto discussing the Convention committees. Everyone agreed that each committee would have (1) two representatives from the Lucas campaign and two representatives from the Gill campaign and (2) a chairman, who was acceptable to both campaigns. At a later point, someone suggested that the Credentials Committee have two co-chairmen. Since no one recommended co-chairmen for the other committees, the other committees had only a chairman.
As mentioned above, the starting point in the chairmen selection process was to identify people, who were acceptable to both campaigns. About 8 to 10 names were suggested. I suggested most of these names, but other people also suggested a few names. At this point in the process, the names were suggested to serve as chairman of any committee. Later, in the evening, this would change as the group agreed to link certain people to certain committees. The group also created a hierarchical list of people whom I should call if any of the first set of people declined.
In suggesting people to serve as committee chairmen, I used the following criteria: (1) A person of stature in the party, e.g. current or former county or state government office holders or current or former Republican Party officials, (2) anticipated attendance at the Convention, (3) willingness to serve as a committee chairman, and (4) ability to do the job. One of the people who I suggested was Ruth Griggs because she certainly met criteria (1), (2) and (4). No one had any information about criteria (3) as to Ruth. When I asked if Ruth was acceptable to both sides, the Lucas campaign said "Yes". The Gill campaign had some reservations about Ruth but, as things evolved over a few days, was willing to accept her as the Elections Committee Chairman. Consequently, I called Ruth about serving as the Elections Committee Chairman, and she agreed.
The above represents my recollection of the events related to selection of the committee chairmen. Perhaps, others have a different recollection. However, I am certain that I suggested Ruth as a possible committee chairman. One of my reasons for so doing is that she and I work in the same building in Manassas. To me, this was important because if I needed to coordinate anything she was only one floor away. In fact, as the pre-Convention planning process evolved, I met with Ruth twice in her office. So, from that standpoint, selecting Ruth as a committee chairman was a very good idea.
Best regards
All in all, then, it sounds as though my source was mistaken. Apparently, both campaigns should be criticized for finding acceptable someone who had so recently attacked the GOP and one of its nominees.


Anonymous said...


Thanks for giving this comment its own post - I have to give you credit for that.

Will you be ripping into Pat O'Leary for finding Ms. Griggs a suitable chairman and a "person of stature in the party"?

James Young said...

Wow. Credit from an anonymous poster. I'm underwhelmed.

To answer your question, I dispute O'Leary's decision, and his notion that Griggs was "a suitable chairman and a 'person of stature in the party.'" Griggs surrendered her party credentials when she savaged the Party's nominee --- one she had herself endorsed for the GOP nomination --- in 2003. That having been said, I have heard nothing about Griggs which suggests that she performed her duties less than capably. Among other things, I was referring to the guilt-by-association tactics which causes others to savage Faisal Gill, and anyone who dares to support him. If they want to play by those rules, they'd better be prepared to reap the whirlwind.