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April 10, 2018 · OPINION

Mud slinging continues as GOP heads to big vote

By George Beveridge

I note that my letter several weeks ago, shining the light on the hypocrisy of Greg Schumacher running a campaign based on inclusion, seems to have struck a nerve. His chief political advisor and enforcer, Rick Buchanan, has replied with a convoluted letter trying to explain away their votes to exclude 14 new members right before the major statewide election last November.

At Mr. Buchannan’s request, Mr. Schumacher voted himself off of the committee he now wants to lead. This just won’t wash.
Cornerstone Group President David Willis chimed in with a letter endorsing Mr. Schumacher and indicating that he is ashamed to be from Fauquier. On top of that, this campaign for inclusion has submitted a list of approximately 140 people they want to automatically exclude from voting in the upcoming canvass, despite the fact that the rules of the Republican Party of Virginia would not exclude most of the people on their hit list.

Even more troublesome are their allies on the 5th District Committee who supported keeping on a member of the state party governing board despite the fact that this member made it clear in his opinion, that Jews, Catholics and other so called undesirables should not have leadership positions in the party. Thankfully two-thirds of the state party board disagreed and voted to that member. He is now gone.

Clearly the Schumacher/Buchanan faction is not in the mainstream of our party or Fauquier County. Meanwhile, Mr. Buchanan and others are sending defamatory, accusatory emails to people who dare oppose Mr. Schumacher’s election as their chosen candidate for chairman.  It is also interesting to note who is running on their ticket: a member of the John Birch Society who previously passed out that group’s attacks on Congressman Frank Wolf and that former Supervisor Lee Sherbeyn took advantage of the county’s Purchase of Development Rights Program and then turned around and opposed it for others.

Mr. Buchanan, not content to stay in his own congressional district, has been meddling in the 10th Congressional District east of us in an attempt to defeat fellow Republican Congresswoman Barbara Comstock. What a group! Class warfare and attempts to divide the county by region are other tactics used by this group.

On the other hand, Harry Burroughs is running a positive campaign, offering to work with one and all who in good faith want to serve Fauquier, preserve our quality of life and promote Republican ideals of individual freedom and opportunity for all. Mr. Burroughs and his team of respected Fauquier leaders will make us proud and certainly will not drag us down into the mud.

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martinkus · April 13, 2018 at 10:55 pm

Yep, you are right! Republicans up on Capitol Hill are hypocrites! The party of small government and fiscal constraint has just ballooned the federal deficit and national debt to unbelievable levels. Hypocrites! Now, they may go after entitlement programs, i.e., the social safety net, because of their lack of fiscal constraint!
Silii · April 13, 2018 at 4:38 pm
While all of you spend your time writing term paper length comments, I'm sitting back looking at what Republicans have done. Raise taxes. Local real estate taxes voted on by the Republican Board of Supervisors. Federal - tax reform is a joke and hardly "cut" taxes for millions, especially those with mortgages and who pay lots of state income taxes. "Tax reform" shot the national debt into outer orbit, the deficit will reach several more trillion in several years, and the "cuts" for average people expires in 2025. Meanwhile, I've been watching the wealthy and corporations make millions and millions. So, while you continue to air your dirty laundry, I look to what liars Republicans are when it comes to "we won't raise taxes."
Fauquier Fan · April 12, 2018 at 8:00 pm
Great letter George. I will be voting for Harry on Saturday and encourage everyone who reads this to support the only person who is qualified - with actual campaign experience - for chairman of the Fauquier GOP.

Jim Griffin · April 11, 2018 at 8:13 am
Reluctant to comment on Republican internal affairs -- I no longer play party politics. Irresistible, though, after receiving a mailer about the "special election" where "Fauquier's rural heritage is at risk from over development unless you vote," the words set next to a back hoe at work with dark skies in the background.

It is the traditional Republican mailer for this district, replete with fear of the horrors awaiting the opponent's victory. Same mailer we see every couple of years attacking Democrats.

As usual, it's disingenuous: Sly rhetoric suggests we non-Republicans vote, referring to this as a "special election" -- not the inter-party squabble that it is -- and we need only bring our photo ID. Indeed, "Fauquier Taxpayers Association" is featured more prominently than the tiny letters used for the word "Republican."

We are left to wonder about the calculations used to decide taxpayers are better off paying for easements twice -- once when acquired, again when the tax base shrinks. How is it better to spend money to acquire and again to replace the lost tax base?

Further: How's this long-term strategy working? Every election we support the choice of the "taxpayers association" and their easement agenda and now we are nonetheless staring at double-digit increases. This should end.

Fear is what it takes to get Republicans to support socialism -- central planning and acquisition of land by government, heaping its tax burden on the rest of us while using our tax money to buy land, a sad reflection on our county and the tactics it uses to persuade its citizenry to let government substitute its judgment for land owners. Forever.

To be clear, I am not pro-development. I think we land owners are better entrusted to maintain the character of this community than are its bureaucrats and politicians through our government. We needn't spend and assign rights at all. Citizen property owners are the strength of this community, not its weakness.

For what it's worth, Schumacher is a better leader with more integrity. I do not share Schumacher's politics, nor the ethics of his peers, but traditional Republicans in this county disgraced themselves with this campaign. It's time for change.

We are left to wonder what fate will befall those who appear to vote. Will they be challenged to commit to rigid party loyalty? Pledge to support all Republicans (candidates unknown)?

Or will they be welcomed for the time as just the votes needed to repel upstart invaders, back hoe operators and developers? We shall see, but it is interesting to watch Republicans attempt to convince this community to turn land over to big government for safe-keeping.

One thing is certain: Hundreds more comments to this publication and others.
mcculla · April 10, 2018 at 7:35 pm
I'm a pastor in the town who happens to be African-American and this article mischaracterizes the Greg Schumacher I've met especially in the area of inclusion. Schumacher is the only candidate of which I'm aware that has reached out to the African-American community to listen to our concerns and to see how the party can better articulate their message within the community.

I've not heard a derogatory word from Schumacher, Buchannan, or Willis regarding the other candidate in this race and I've have multiple occasions to interact with them. It would have been nice to read more about what Mr. Burroughs plans to do if elected rather than slinging the very mud your article appears to despise.

The main area of concern that I've seen from the FCRC is land usage when people from all walks of life are hurting for a variety of reasons not always by their own hand. Making the primary issue 'land' keeps the image of the White establishment alive in the eyes of many non-Whites and dilutes a conservative message that might actually resonate with a more diverse audience.

Schumacher has not made that a topic of discussion during our time together. He has been singularly focused on how he can help the Republican party better articulate their message and tear down the walls the Republican party has been very good at erecting (whether or not he is elected).
martinkus · April 10, 2018 at 2:43 pm
The local Republican party is competing with the major dysfunction and chaos in the White House. One must wonder why the Republican party, in general, is currently in such a mess and very vulnerable to a "blue tidal wave" this November.

As I mentioned before, from what I have heard from members attending the committee meetings, the FCRC has a "circus-like" atmosphere. "Dysfunctional" comes to mind, much like the Republican dysfunction up on Capitol Hill and within the White House (i.e., Trump-mediated chaos...after all he is a demagogue and a carnival-barker). Would new FCRC leadership alter the local "dysfunction"? Hard to predict considering the current "divide" within the FCRC. Many folks believe that if the FCRC continues its drive toward the "political right," it could alienate moderate/centrist Republicans. Moreover, a turn to the far-right could change the county's priorities regarding land preservation and residential growth (in a negative way for us conservation-minded folks). It is clear, though, that the Democratic Blue Wave continues to grow nationwide. Look what happened last year in Virginia! Is Fauquier County, a deep red community, in the cross-hairs? Good luck to both candidates for the FCRC leadership position and to all other candidates seeking FCRC membership as voting members. Hopefully, there will be a "healing process," but I doubt it, based on what I have heard, including the comments on this, and other, threads.

The upcoming canvass could become a powder keg if folks get out of line and lack respect, especially if registered voters are "challenged" before obtaining a ballot. As Trump would say: "SAD."
RGLJA · April 10, 2018 at 1:37 pm
My gawd George. I need a shower after reading that hogwash. Fauquier County deserves so much better than this nonsense. Please vote for a leader with dignity. Vote for Greg Schumacher.
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