GAGOP Round-up: District Conventions In Sight

We’re about a week away from our district Republican Party conventions (woo!), so here are a few things that are happening around the state:

Major thanks to Chuck Payne and the Whitfield County Republican Party for hosting a GAGOP candidate meet-and-greet last Tuesday evening.  It was a great turn-out, and we heard from John Padgett, Alex Johnson, Catherine Bernard, Michael McNeely, Doug Grammer, Ron Johnson, and Greg Williams for their respective offices in which they seek.  It was a great event.  Well done.

I also received a note from BJ VanGundy regarding his candidacy and reminding folks about district conventions this coming weekend:

This election for GAGOP is more important than simply winning the Chairman’s position. The real importance is placing the Republican Party in a position to win elections for years to come. Platitudes and empty promises are not what you deserve. Republicans in this state deserve a leader of the party with a plan to succeed, which is why I have done my best to detail my agenda for building the Great Opportunity Party for all Republicans across this state.

“Grassroots” is not a buzzword for me. The activists of our party are the foundation of our successful efforts going forward. I am the only the candidate with a detailed plan to build partnerships that last.  It is why C.H.A.R.G.E has endorsed my campaign. It’s why I see a key place at the table for the Tea Party and similar organizations. Patriots will always help us win elections and protect our conservative ideals in government. I promise that both myself and the GAGOP staff will respect these and other grassroots organizations. The important thing going forward is that all of us that love this Country and Constitution are pulling in the same direction.

As your chairman, I am committed to:

  • Build consistency and predictability into the GAGOP operations with effective meetings that provide an opportunity for input from Grassroots organizations;
  • Use a strong committee structure that will help to set the GAGOP agenda for success;
  • Develop a broad-based coalition network to diversify our grassroots partners and build toward future success.

Please take some time to visit my website to learn what I’ll be committed to as your GAGOP Chairman.

I’m also running for the 14th District Republican Party’s vice chairmanship.  If you’re a delegate or alternate to the 14th District GOP Convention, I’d be honored to have your support and vote.  Check out (and like) my Facebook page.  I also received an endorsement from Jessica S.’s Perspicacious Pups (which is a pretty big deal):

Pup Endorsement

I will also be posting Q&As with our Republican candidates over the next few weekends leading up to our state convention. Stay tuned.


  1. CSF says:

    I have been a supporter of BJ Van Gundy since the day he entered the race for Chairman. Contrary to some, I believe the GAGOP has an opportunity to grow and expand our base across Georgia. I want a Chairman who has the drive to grow and win, not just maintain. It will take a strong, charismatic leader, one who is unafraid to talk to, or even debate, those who do not understand what the Republican Party believes in. We can do that with BJ Van Gundy.

    • CowetaVoter says:

      I think it is laughable that these people, who have tried so hard to lock out conservatives like the TEA party, the young people and others from involvement in the GOP, are now tripping all over themselves to claim alliance with the grassroots. What utter and complete nonsense and if you believe Van Gundy has ever been on the side of the “grassroots activists”, I have some beachfront property in Arizona you might be interest in….

      • CSF says:


        You must be confused. BJ Van Gundy chaired the State Credentials committee which removed the entire Athens-Clarke County delegation due to their breaking of the rules in order to keep Ron Paul and/or Tea Party supporters from being elected to the state convention. He stood up for them when their own county chairman, and even another candidate for state chair, would not.

        As a Young Republican myself, I don’t know why you think the GAGOP seeks to “lock out” young people. Quite the contrary. Sue, BJ, and the leadership of the GAGOP have been very inclusive and supportive of our efforts. Young Republicans from other states are envious of the support we have from our state party.

        • Napoleon says:

          First I will add that even Seth has had a very long history of supporting young people being involved in the Party. Look at his support of the local Young Republican club in Muscogee County and he was a strong and early backer of Josh McKoon.

          Also, Bert Guy was elected at the 2001 state convention at the age of 24. Now 34, he’s stepping down after 10 years of being elected by the state convention.

          Michael McNealy is an active member of the Young Republicans and has held numerous leadership positions over the years.

          Georgia has a long, long history of encouraging and supporting young Republicans in senior leadership.

        • CowetaVoter says:

          No confusion here. Do you really think that Athens-Clark was the ONLY delegation where their leadership behaved in that manner? No, is was an organized effort handed down by state leadership and happened all over the state. Athens-Clark was ONE convention removed so people would think – like you- that leadership “did something” about it. But what about the rest? State leadership told their county and district chairs to take the actions they took. Then what about at the state convention? They could have called out, “all in favor say aye” to nothing but crickets chirping and state leadership would have claimed the ayes still had it. The GOP needs new leadership, not a recycle of those who have already proven who and what they are.

      • Doug Grammer says:

        Coweta Voter,

        I’m not speaking for every candidate for statewide GOP office, but I am one of “these people.”

        I founded the Northwest Georgia Young Republicans Club in 1993 and went on to become state Chairman of the YR’s. I was active in the College Republicans, but that hasn’t been lately. I think I have a healthy relationship with the tea party as a whole. I recruited a member of the tea party in my area to run for Chairman of a county party near me, and she did a great job. I was also on the credentials committee last convention cycle that recommended to the convention not to seat the delegation from Clarke County. Technically, the convention voted not to seat the delegation. Our committee just made the recommendation. We need to follow our own rules.

        I know that BJ was once Chair of the Gwinnett YR’s and Greg Williams is Chair of the Buckhead YR’s. I wouldn’t be surprised if others running were also involved.

  2. Seth Harp also had a message this week. It is provided without any commentary, corrections, etc.

    I endorse this statement by Freedom Works:

    Establishment Republicans just can’t help themselves. Instead of working to defeat Barack Obama’s second term agenda, they continue to verbally assault conservative activists.

    At a recent high-level meeting of GOP kingmakers, RNC Chief of Staff Mike Shields expressed disdain for grassroots activists – condescendingly and rudely describing them as the “professional right.” He went on to characterize grassroots organizations as “liars.”

    Republican political consultants pocketed millions in the last election –and they have absolutely nothing to show for it. Now, these same people are degrading principled activists who do the heavy lifting on the ground. Unbelievable.

    Grassroots activists deserve thanks and gratitude, not underhanded criticism behind closed doors.

    It’s time for establishment Republicans to reexamine their priorities. At my first RNC national meeting as your state Chairman, I will stand up and demand Mike Shields apologize for disparaging hardworking activists, and if he fails to do so, I will move to remove him as RNC Chief of Staff.

  3. davidinflowerybranch says:

    So let me get this straight.

    It isn’t useful for Establishment Republicans to not go after Obama but it is useful for Seth Harp to not go after Obama.

    Really? Establishment Republican Harp’s whole message since getting into this race because he was doing a favor to an Establishment Republican (Wendell Willard) has been to bash on national figures and call the Speaker of the House unethical (is that what you wanted Rep. Willard?). I don’t get it. Well maybe I do. Mr. Harp had no plan for running for Chairman until Willard asked him to and Harp agreed to do it without even knowing what he was agreeing to do.

    Nuff said.

  4. Joseph says:

    The Second & Eighth District will have a Joint Banquet on Friday beginning with a Reception at 6:30 PM. Congressman Austin Scott will be the keynote speaker at Dinner, however – all of the State GAGOP Chair candidates plus some of the Vice-Chair candidates have committed to attend the dinner.

    If you have time time, I’d like to invite you to attend, we’ll be in the Byron Municipal Complex in Peach County. I-75 exit 149. Reception starts at 6:30, Dinner at 7:15. Individual tickets are $45, $75 for Couples. Please send an email to [email protected] if you are interested in attending.

    Some guy from Columbus is running for re-election as 2nd District Chair, he might be worth your consideration, but doubtful. HAH.

  5. I missed the following comment from Cowetavoter on April 16, but I had to respond:

    “State leadership told their county and district chairs to take the actions they took.”

    This is absolutely not true. I, as a District Chair, sat in on every single one of the meetings and nothing was said as you are stating. In fact, it was the complete opposite. We had numerous meetings and were given information about the importance of following Robert’s Rules of Order. I and many others would have not stood for it if the State Party said what you are claiming. The overwhelming majority of District and County conventions were run fairly in 2012. Athens-Clarke was the only one that was brought to our attention.

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