On Friday, I spoke to a friend running for local office about his and other races that will be on the ballot in the fall. Because of how local politics has been here in Newton County and seeing as how they are no Libertarian candidates running, I plan on pulling a Republican ballot during the primary, so naturally, I want to learn more about the people for whom I may cast a ballot. My friend advised me to come to a meet-and-greet at the Newton GOP office in Covington the next day to meet some of the folks running.
After speaking to my state senator, Rick Jeffares, when I arrived yesterday, I took a seat to listen to the Newton GOP chairwoman, Delia Fleming, talk about their new office and some of the things going on in the local party. After a few moments, Mrs. Fleming started ripping on the “Ron Paul supporters and libertarians trying to take over the Republican Party” and proceeded to slam them in every way possible. She pointed to some things that went on at the state GOP convention. Of course, I wasn’t there, and I’ve only heard second-hand accounts from friends from both those sides — more establishment-leaning Republicans and Ron Paul supporters.
Keep in mind that I didn’t know most of the people in the room, and I walked in realizing that I was probably not going to be welcome should I let people know my political leanings. However, I wanted to observe and discuss issues with some candidates, particularly those running for BOC chair and Sheriff; the latter being very important to me since my home was burglarized twice — once in December and again in January.
While I’ll admit that there are Ron Paul supporters who are not very good representatives of the Liberty Movement and obviously don’t paint the rest of us in very good light, I get that, though it’s not like shady things haven’t gone down inside the Republican Party; however, it’s a mistake to cast every libertarian with a broad brush. I tried to keep my best poker face, but my friends in the room could see that I was disappointed.
Unlike many of my friends in the Libertarian Party, I didn’t get involved in the local parties and the delegate process, nor was I even involved in Ron Paul’s campaign here in Georgia. I did vote for him in the presidential primary, but that was about it. But yet, I was essentially told yesterday, because of my political viewpoints, that my vote in these local races wasn’t wanted.