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Kopko’s Self-Inflicted Head Wound

By Greg L | 5 May 2007 | 51st HOD District, PWCRC | 87 Comments

Tom Kopko, Chairman of the Prince William County Republican Committee, sent out a stunning email yesterday in response to a Washington Post article that appeared in today’s edition regarding his improper actions on behalf of the Faisal Gill campaign. Several elected officials are uncomfortable, concerned and upset more because of Tom Kopko’s reaction to the criticism than the underlying issues, which still remain troubling. Committee members are talking about removing Kopko if he does not resign, as this situation has gone from bad to horrible as a result of this ill-advised entry by the chairman into open warfare with candidates seeking the Republican nomination. Trying to outdo the circus that is the Loudoun County Republican Committee has done nothing to resolve the situation.

Tom’s email starts out with a substantial broadside where he claims that Julie Lucas told him that she wanted to ensure Democrats participated in the nomination process:

But, the reporter got it wrong, or Julie Lucas never told him, that on January 4th Julie argued for a primary specifically so that Democrats could be included. She said they were her base, given her current seat. Talk about being stunned. I utterly rejected the notion. (emphasis in original)

Anyone who has even a passing familiarity with Julie Lucas knows this is utterly ridiculous. Are we to believe that Julie Lucas, someone who currently holds elected office as a Republican, thinks that she would need help from Democrats in order to prevail over someone never elected to office who’s most recent claim to fame is that he was the press spokesman for the 2006 Steve Chapman campaign? Outlandish statements like this might be expected from Eugene Delgaudio, but demonstrate a troubling decent by Tom Kopko, who as party chairman should at least be maintaining some appearance of impartiality and fairness, firmly into the mud as a bought and paid for negative campaign spokesman for Faisal Gill. Given what we’ve seen so far, asking for a primary given the current PWCRC leadership would seem to be a reasonable attempt to insulate the candidate selection process from Tom Kopko.

Next up is Kopko’s persistently claimed fantasy that he was unaware that Lucas would file:

Julie also gives the impression that she essentially informed me of her candidacy on Jan. 4. Not even close. She told me, and many others, throughout January that she had so many offices to consider that she just couldn’t make up her mind. As late as Jan. 25 she told a women’s group that she still hadn’t made up her mind. The fact is, Julie’s decision was in the air all the way up until she submitted her filing just 4 hours before the deadline on January 29. (emphasis in the original)

The reason this fantasy persists is that Tom Kopko’s crowd tried as hard as possible to convince Julie to run against Senator Toddy Puller, and even recruited Ken Cuccinelli to plead with her to enter that race in order to clear a path for Faisal Gill in the 51st District. Convinced that this grand plan would work, Kopko signed onto the Faisal Gill payroll not for a moment believing that Julie’s intentions to run in the 51st District, which were clearly evident to myself and Jim Riley back in November, and reported in the Washington Post a year before that, would be fulfilled in the face of his grand plan. With the incumbent office holder Delegate Michele McQuigg publicly waffling about her intentions until very late in the game, seemingly making a 51st bid potentially troublesome, and the pressure to take on Toddy Puller, Kopko was convinced that Julie Lucas would take the easy route. Perhaps this helps readers understand why Michele McQuigg got involved in the Faisal Gill campaign when to everyone else this is a race she should have kept her distance from.

Lucas did not take the seemingly easy route laid out for her, although with the pressure to conform to the succession plan a public announcement of that decision was considerably delayed. With so many people asking Julie to run for so many different offices, and the terrain of the 51st District being intentionally obfuscated in order to promote an established succession plan, no wonder it took until the last minute to announce her intentions. Yet even as early as January 4th, Tom is recognizing a real possibility that Julie will run in the 51st House District and is discussing with her the nomination method to be used in the district. Although Julie probably never realized it, assuming that Kopko was dealing with her above-board, that conversation was all about pushing Julie into the 36th District Senate race.  Now it’s turned into a weapon against her by the chairman whose job it is to ensure a fair candidate selection process.

Later on, Kopko tries to defend his status as a paid political consultant to the Faisal Gill campaign even before the candidate filing deadline has expired:

Of course, it isn’t mentioned there are plenty of examples of chairmen who run fair processes while doing contract work for or having a financial relationship with a candidate. One need look just a little north to Fairfax to find a large, prime example. Examination of almost every race shows how commonplace it is. The State Board of Elections and the Republican Party of Virginia concur there’s no problem. In other words, this is much ado about nothing.

This is a pretty interesting swipe at former FCRC Chairman Eric Lundberg, who has never been a paid political consultant to any campaign, either during a primary or in a general election campaign, according to the Virginia Public Access Project. There’s been some debate about whether this is a common practice, as Tom puts it, but so far no one seems to have come up with an example of any unit chairman actually doing this, no matter how many races we look at. The only example proffered by anyone as far as I can tell regards Kevin Gentry who did fundraising work for Kilgore and McDonnell. He is a former State Central Committee member, not a unit chairman, and did not work on a local race in which he could have had a conflict of interest. This claim appears to be an outright fabrication delivered to the members of the committee which he serves, although perhaps since Kopko mentioned widespread unethical practices among Fairfax County Republicans he will do us the service of specifying exactly who the LCRC needs to more closely inspect in order to more substantiate his claim.  Otherwise this has all the appearances of an intentional lie.

Bringing Ed Gillespie into this discussion, as if Kopko requested pre-clearance from RPV before he made the decision to accept money from Faisal Gill, puts RPV in a rather difficult situation. While RPV did come down in the aftermath of the disclosure of Kopko’s paid relationship with Gill, and did state that there was nothing in the Party Plan which prohibited such relationships, Kopko is trying to force RPV into a situation where they dismiss ethical concerns and strictly rely on whether something is specifically prohibited or not. I am reminded of excuses of “no controlling authority” by Al Gore in reference to using government resources for the Clinton campaign and statements by Democrats that 21 year old staffers having sex with a married president is not illegal. If we are to remain consistent with our principles, the “it’s not against the law” excuse cannot stand. Putting Ed Gillespie in such a position by Tom Kopko is completely reckless. This is not the standard of behavior expected by a unit chairman.

Then Tom lays out his plan for ensuring a fair process in the 51st District:

To that end, I am continuing to work in a spirit of agreement and accommodation. I am happy to announce that the campaigns have agreed upon Pat O’Leary as convention chairman. Pat is a former chairman of the combined PWC-Manassas committee and is well known and liked. He has also graciously agreed to work with me in the other convention preparations to ensure each campaign is satisfied with the processes and, ultimately, the convention’s result. We are targeting a May 10 meeting with the campaigns to finalize convention committee personnel and optimize convention processes for a fair, quick, and efficient convention.

Kopko is still the chairman of the 51st District Committee, and the only member of that committee which exercises ultimate power over the selection process, and Kopko retains veto authority over everything that happens in this convention. Immediately after displaying anything other than “a spirit of agreement and accommodation” in every preceding part of this email, and his demonstrated bias, we are to expect that Kopko’s selection of O’Leary as chairman of the convention is supposed to allay our concerns? It’s the chairman of the legislative district, who retains all the power to select those who set the rules, validate delegate filing forms, and manage the details of the convention which has the power to influence the outcome of the process. Selecting a good, albeit somewhat elderly man who is not likely prepared for what may await him at a convention, to man the gavel hardly alleviates well-justified concerns.

This email is an abomination. It harms the party, it harms the candidates, and the outright lies it contains tarnishes every member of the committee. Tom Kopko must resign in order to restore any semblance of dignity that the committee can retain in the aftermath of his reprehensible behavior. To do less than that demonstrates that we value politics over principle, which would be most detrimental to our worthiness as a political party in Prince William County. I’ve cherished that when confronted by corruption within our ranks, we responsibly and rapidly excise the problem rather than try to gloss over it. Now is the test for the PWCRC to demonstrate it’s collective sense of honor, if that honor is not shown by it’s discredited chairman.

Kopko must go. The only question should be how that is accomplished.

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  1. in a pickle said on 5 May 2007 at 6:42 am:
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    Who do we get IF Kopko goes?

  2. freedom said on 5 May 2007 at 8:21 am:
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    Denny Daugherty…:( :(

  3. Jonathan Mark said on 5 May 2007 at 8:27 am:
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    “”"21 year old staffers having sex with a married president is not illegal. “”"

    For the historical record, not that it changes your point at all, Monica Lewinsky was 22 years old when she first laid eyes on Bill Clinton.

    Was the relationship illegal? Apparently not. Much that is unethical is not illegal. That is why saying that Kopko’s actions were not illegal, or Gill’s actions were not illegal, or Clinton’s or Gore’s is not saying much.

    In fact, it is not saying anything at all. It was never the intention of the Founding Fathers that all unethical actions should be illegal.

  4. NoVA Scout said on 5 May 2007 at 8:40 am:
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    That’s an impressive piece, Greg, by any standard. I don’t agree with you on everything, but when you get hold of something, I don’t think anyone can match your thoroughness. I wish some of the MSM organs had a few people with your determination to get to the bottom of things.

  5. freedom said on 5 May 2007 at 8:54 am:
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    yes Greg, nice work…unfortunately our county Republican party has been so sullied by all this stuff, it will take a long time to recover.

    Just like the Dems lick their lips at the potential of Faisal Gill as an opponent, they are doing so even MORE now….just consider the potential reverberations of this. Sad, but when it’s time to clean house, then better get out the broom!

  6. Loudoun Insider said on 5 May 2007 at 9:06 am:
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    RPV better wake up and smell the coffee here in NoVA if they want to retain control of the General Assembly.

  7. charles said on 5 May 2007 at 2:43 pm:
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    Your other commenters are much to easily impressed by smoke and mirrors.

    First, no go, Greg. Tom Kopko was willing to put HIS name to specific allegations, after Julie took HER complaints to the Washington Post. Waving your hands and professing to “know” what happened doesn’t cut it. We need to hear from Julie, in her own words, with her OWN NAME attached to it. If her recollection is different from Tom’s, let her send us all an e-mail about it.

    You are just 2nd-hand hearsay at this point, and nobody is going to take you seriously in a fight over the committee chair.

  8. charles said on 5 May 2007 at 2:44 pm:
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    LI, you should focus on trying not to lose the rest of your county to the democrats, and stop trying to destroy the county that has consistantly returned put republicans in office, and has continued to do so this past year with Tom Kopko as chair.

    It’s funny that the more you loudouners “clean up your act”, and “clean house”, the more elections you lose to democrats.

  9. Anonymous said on 5 May 2007 at 3:29 pm:
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    I’m no Tom Kopko fan, but Greg, despite the praise you give Kopko this is still a bit of hatchet job you’re doing here. Tom’s email was a response to what was published and tells his side of the story with reasonable civility. I think he’s right that conventions are the best nominating process and have no problem with him having helped McQuigg with her filings for the Clerk’s race (let’s face it, McQuigg is not the sharpest knife in the door and probably needed the filing help while Beauchamp did not). As to the race in the 51st, it seems entirely plausible that Lucas referred to Democrats as part of her base (she is in the Neabsco district, after all, and her broader appeal is what makes her a more attractive general election candidate than Gill).

    I, too, think Tom is basically an honest, hardworking guy. It’s competence and temperament, not integrity, that I think is really at issue here. Convention stuff can be intricate, and Tom seems to have bungled things (much the way Gill does). His acceptance of the consulting payment from Gill also demonstrated very poor judgement. Most of all, though, Tom too often is boorish, or goes off half-cocked and loses his temper before he has all the facts (this would be a tough criticism for you to make, Greg, since the vast majority of your posts are like that too). This sort of behavior really eats up the goodwill people might otherwise have toward you that would lead them to give you the benefit of the doubt. That’s what Tom is facing now.

    Tom has become a part of the story, which is a problem, but it’s only been a couple stories that are not likely to result in any follow up. The only media place this is really being pushed, Greg, is on your site, by you, a blogger clearly aligned against Faisal Gill. You are the one who has used terms like “reprehensible”, “abomination”, “corruption”, and “lies” when referring to Kopko’s actions, yet you seem to have nothing more facts to go on than that you do not believe his email. I say look hard at Tom’s action, but be fair and get the facts before you judge him so harshly.

  10. Loudoun Insider said on 5 May 2007 at 3:31 pm:
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    Charles, now you’re exhibiting your utter ignorance of Loudoun County. The fact is nothing’s been cleaned up in Loudoun County and that’s why the LCRC keeps losing members and elections. It has become almost impossible to get good decent normal Republicans back into the LCRC because of the nitwits running the show. They thrive on confusion, favoritism, and exclusion, enforcing their own brand of party purity. I agree PWC is in much better shape electorally for Republicans, but I see the PWCRC going down the same path as the LCRC. The slow-growth platform of Corey Stewart is what has saved the PWCRC, not exclusionary politics. The LCRC is totally lost on the growth issue, and thoroughly f-ed up on top of it. Hopefully you guys can right your ship before it capsizes like Loudoun.

  11. CONVA said on 5 May 2007 at 4:07 pm:
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    If Kopko doesn’t go, watch the membership go down.

  12. charles said on 5 May 2007 at 4:59 pm:
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    LI, I guess you missed my sarcasm, which is my fault.

    We don’t want your kind of “help” in Prince William, we like electing republicans.

  13. charles said on 5 May 2007 at 5:08 pm:
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    Greg, I’m going to go through your “response” point by point over at my blog. But I will ask you a few questions here:

    Tom Kopko claims that “As late as Jan. 25 she told a women’s group that she still hadn’t made up her mind.”.

    Is that false? I presume it’s easy enough to check, there must be some women who attended the Jan 25 meeting who could say whether or not Julie made that claim.

    If not false, it means either that Julie had NOT decided to be a candidate on January 4th (because she SAID she was undecided on the 25th), or else Julie lied to the women’s group on the 25th.

    You claim to care about the truth, have you not taken a moment to confirm or refute this charge?

    In your post, you say “Perhaps this helps readers understand why Michele McQuigg got involved in the Faisal Gill campaign “. Ignoring your belittling of a good woman with this charge, if Michelle McQuigg was so convinced Julie wasn’t running that she mistakenly “got involved” in the Gill campaign, doesn’t that support the contention that Julie’s running for the office was NOT well-known or inevitable? The alternative is that Michelle was somehow more out-of-the-loop than the average committee member.

    This is what Julie must speak for herself. Your post pretty much proves that Julie was NOT committed to this race until the last minute, but that’s not fair to her to have you speculating about things when she was directly involved and can speak directly.

  14. NoVA Scout said on 5 May 2007 at 5:22 pm:
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    Charles: I think some of us are saying that taking money from candidates, especially substantial sums, isn’t a good idea at any time, particularly pre-nomination (although I personally think post-nomination has appearance problems also). It doesn’t matter if he takes it from Lucas or Gill and it doesn’t matter if he knows the other candidate is running or not. Do you think it’s a good idea?

  15. freedom said on 5 May 2007 at 6:51 pm:
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    Absolutely agree, Nova…I am thoroughly amazed that some believe it okay for the Chairman, the head of the party, the leader to be “on the take” at ANY time. Oh, I forgot…the mantra…”it goes on all the time.”

  16. Tired of splitting hairs said on 5 May 2007 at 7:57 pm:
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    We can split hairs from now until November and the simple truth that will remain is that Tom Kopko should step down for the sake of the greater good. His role is to work to protect his party from negative attention, not shine a spotlight on inner party problems. His ultimate responsibility as chairman is to support all of the party candidates and lead in a positive and unified way, not create divisions and disparage fellow Republicans in the press and via email. At this point, it doesn’t matter who started it or who declared intent to run for whichever office whenever, the perception of trustworthiness of the party leadership has been irrevocably corrupted. This situation has the potential of having serious long-term implications with deep scars left behind. Enough.

  17. Not Tom Kopko said on 5 May 2007 at 8:35 pm:
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    You frigging anonymous cowards can eat my poo!!!

    I know what I’m doing and don’t care what a bunch of ball-less idiots who are so afraid of me they won’t identify themselves say on this pissy little blog! Gill got a substantial discount from my usual rates - I’m just that good at writing website copy - so there, I’m helping out our candidate. We all know Lucas is a RINO!

  18. charles said on 5 May 2007 at 8:38 pm:
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    We had no “inner party problems” until Lucy, and now Julie, asserted some sort of “unfairness” at having to compete on a level playing field for the republican nomination.

    NovaScout, despite the protestations, committee chairs are often REALLY tied to candidates, not simply by trivial things like having performed a service for a candidate, but by actual endorsements, or being the hand-picked chair of the committee.

    In our committee, Kopko was elected by the committee in a convention of republicans. He is beholden to the committee, not to a single candidate. Obviously he has preferences for candidates, but he’s been very good about NOT making his preferences public or a big deal in the committee meetings. He was not at Gill’s kickoff for example, even though he was at Lucas’ kickoff, and he hadn’t as of the April report given Gill any money, or endorsed him.

    Generally I see no problem with the Chair having a REAL JOB, since the Chair isnt’ a paid position. Kopko’s job is in an area that would lead him to get paid to provide services in a political realm, and I wouldn’t expect him to refuse to provide services for candidates for local office.

    I do expect that he won’t work FOR a candidate (meaning joining their campaign), especially during a primary but even during the general election, because he needs to be able to work for all candidates. But what we are talking about here is a small amount of work performed at one time, not “support for” or “working for” a candidate.

    Tom has said he would not do work like this for a candidate if there was an active nomination battle. So he seems to agree with you in part, but not in whole if you think he should NEVER do work for a candidate.

    So even if I thought this was a big deal, which I don’t, I certainly don’t see there being an issue here — I could write to Tom saying I wish he wouldn’t do it, but he agrees with that already.

    I reject the notion that his work for Gill represents a conflict of interest now, because he is not working for Gill now. In fact, if he had been ON the Gill campaign earlier, and resigned from the campaign when Lucas entered the race, that would be to me sufficient action to remove the direct conflict.

    You can never remove the “appearance” of impropriety. The idea that you will find a person to serve as chair that will not have ANY opinion as to which candidate should be chosen is silly. And the suggestion that Tom, who apparently favors Gill, would be considered impartial EXCEPT for getting paid for a service by Gill, is also laughable.

    Suppose Tom hadn’t done any work for Gill. Wouldn’t Lucas still be able to complain that she wanted a primary, that Tom obviously favors Gill, and that he picked a convention because he wanted his friend to win instead of her?

    The work done for Gill adds NOTHING to that argument. In fact, the FACT that Tom required PAYMENT for his work suggests that Tom, far from using his position to help Gill, intends to be as fair as possible. If he wanted to help Gill, he would have done the job as an “in-kind” donation, leaving Gill the $2000 to spend on other activities.

    I have no doubt that, if he could, Tom would change what happened, and also that, if he was able to do so, it would make not one bit of difference.

    This Blog, and the Lucas supporters, have been looking for dirt to use to help their candidate for months. This was just the latest. Remember the false charge that Gill paid another $750 to the committee “for an event” that didn’t happen? Turned out to be the Lincoln/Reagan dinner.

    But that doesn’t stop the author of that charge from slinging more mud. At some point, maybe Greg will note that Faisal ties his shoes funny.

    (I made that up, but if it makes Gill haters spend time running around looking at his shoes, it will be worth it)

  19. charles said on 5 May 2007 at 8:42 pm:
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    Tired of splitting hairs?

    Sorry, it would be terrible for our committee to have Tom gone. When the rumors were circulating that Tom might resign and run for an office, the consensus was that it would be bad for our party if that happened. We simply don’t have a person to jump in right now and run the party.

    I doubt our candidates want to change party leadership, and despite Greg’s dubious claims, MY bet is that to the degree our candidates care about this, it’s that they are pissed off at Julie and Lucy using the papers to stir up public opinion against our committee, and with people like Greg making it harder for us to elect our republican candidates.

    I certainly hope some idiot brings this up at the next meeting. Then we’ll see how small this insurrection is. I can’t believe Julie Lucas actually supports this, although I can’t explain why she stood silent at the meeting and then spoke to the Washington Post.

  20. charles said on 5 May 2007 at 9:50 pm:
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    Greg, I’ve got my rebuttal to your argument up over at my site. In summary:

    - You present no facts to support your claims.
    - Your description of the events of January support Tom’s claim that Julie didn’t settle on the 51st until the last minute.
    - Your smear of Pat O’Leary is shameful, and I can’t believe nobody here called you on it.
    - Your argument actually admits Tom did not believe Julie was running for the 51st, which refutes your conclusion.
    - On Tom’s weakest point regarding other financial entanglements, you misread his claims, falsely claimed he attacked Lundberg, treated Gillespie like he was a pawn, blamed the wrong party for dragging RPV into the process.

    Among other things.

  21. Anonymous said on 5 May 2007 at 9:58 pm:
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    Interesting that the “Not Tom Kopko” rant has a hyperlink to Too Conservative. Vince must have forgotten to remove it when he used one of his multiple personalities to post a comment.

  22. anon said on 5 May 2007 at 10:43 pm:
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    I’m still sputtering over “We had no ‘inner party problems’ until Lucy, and now Julie, asserted some sort of “unfairness” at having to compete on a level playing field for the republican nomination.”

  23. Jonathan Mark said on 5 May 2007 at 10:46 pm:
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    “”"Tom did not believe Julie was running for the 51st”"”

    If Kopko believed that Julie was not running in spite of her public interest in running then Kopko should have contacted Julie and asked, “Julie, I am thinking of accepting $2000 from Faisal Gill in exchange for, actually, we haven’t figured what the pretext is for him paying me yet. Is that okay? Will you pay me too?”

  24. Mitch Cumstein said on 5 May 2007 at 11:00 pm:
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    “We had no “inner party problems” until Lucy, and now Julie, asserted some sort of “unfairness” at having to compete on a level playing field for the republican nomination.”

    You’ve got to be friggin’ kidding me! We’ve had “inner party problems” for several years. I barely consider myself a Republican at this point, in large part due to the crap that’s gone on in the PWCRC. The Committee is a total joke. If the Dems could get their acts together (which at some point they likely will), the GOP wouldn’t stand a chance. I wish these idiots would wake up to the fact that Republicans have been winning in Prince William in spite of the PWCRC as opposed to because of it. The most successful candidates cover their own polls, get their own volunteers and basically “tolerate” the Committee.

    I’ll continue to support candidates, bit I’ll never lift another finger for the Committee. What a total embarassment!

  25. AWCheney said on 5 May 2007 at 11:06 pm:
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    For someone who doesn’t care for this blog Charles, you certainly have monopolized a few of the threads here…and only YOU would read what Greg said about Pat O’Leary as a smear. Well, you and Jimmy Young, but then it’s hard to tell you apart lately.

  26. Jonathan Mark said on 6 May 2007 at 3:17 am:
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    I don’t mind Charles and Tom posting here, but they shouldn’t use BVBL to advertise their own blogs.

  27. freedom said on 6 May 2007 at 7:15 am:
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    For those of you who talk about a “smear” of FG, the Chairman’s E-Mail slap at the opposing Republican candidate is nothing more than the cry of a “desperate man.” …a man who knows he did wrong, knows he got caught, wishes FG hadn’t reported the $2K, and knows he’s in trouble, but won’t take responsibility for his own actions. Shameful in itself. The Chairman’s tactic in the E-Mail is to divert attention from his own misdeeds to the candidate he obviously does not support.

    The “when” and the “why” he accepted payment aren’t even worthy of discussion; the fact that the PWCRC Chairman DID accept payment from a candidate — AT ANY TIME, FOR ANY REASON — is the only issue.

    Come on….face it, the Chairman’s acceptance is clearly analogous to a federal employee accepting a fee for consultation, web design or whatever, from a contractor — whether involved in a competitive bid or not. The pivotal word is “integrity,” both in substance and appearance.

  28. charles said on 6 May 2007 at 8:54 am:
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    AWCheney, the fact that you SAY you don’t think Greg saying Pat is too old to do a good job running a convention is a smear makes me believe you don’t believe what you are writing here, or that you are using very big blinders when it comes to who gets attacked.

    Greg didn’t say he knew the guy and the guy didn’t come across as competent, He said of Pat : “Selecting a good, albeit somewhat elderly man who is not likely prepared for what may await him at a convention,”

    what, AW, do you think Greg meant by “albeit somewhat elderly man”? Do you think him being “somewhat elderly” has anything to do with his competence, or preparation? Greg clearly was implying that his being “somewhat elderly” meant he was “not likely prepared”.

    Going beyond the gratuitous swipe at his age, which without knowing the man has NO PLACE in the conversation of his qualifications, Greg also said, without talking to the man, that he “is not likely prepared”. How does Greg know he is “not likely prepared”? The guy used to run the committee, so he’s familiar with party politics. He certainly is familiar with this race, and being chosen AFTER this flat he certainly KNOWS what the issues are, and why he was chosen.

    Greg, with absolutely NO evidence whatsoever EXCEPT that the man was “somewhat old”, pronounced him unlikely to be fit for the job.

    And you don’t see that as a smear? Amazing.

  29. charles said on 6 May 2007 at 9:03 am:
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    JM, I don’t think this is your site, but your concerns I’m sure are given the weight they deserve.

    Greg can remove any posts he likes. Generally it is considered good blog ettiquite to inform another blogger when you have written a piece which references his, especially to refute it.

    Most of the time this would eventually turn into an actual backlink because my post references his post, but sometimes my software doesn’t play well with Greg’s software.

    I’m not “promoting” my blog. Anybody who knows me or observes my blog knows that it’s just a place for me to talk about what I care about, and I don’t care if people show up or not. I have no advertising, I get nothing from people popping in or not.

    I’m not using blog hits to build up my credibility. In this case, I wanted to do a point-by-point rebuttal that required formatting beyond what I could do in a comment.

    Plus, some here have complained already at the length of my responses, and the piece I did about this was very long.

    You do know, JM, that every post is signed with a name that generally is a link to the person’s blog, right? So in fact everybody with a web site is “advertising” that web site?

    To whoever it was that said I’m spending a lot of time here, yes it is true, as my party committee is under attack, and I am defending it. I’m not a big fan of Tom Kopko, and we COULD have had a rational conversation and maybe even put in place rules in the committee that would limit this activity in the future.

    But the Lucas supporters decided instead of doing something for the good of the committee, they’d smear the leader and try to oust him in order to get a leg up in a convention against another candidate. This required a defense of the committee, rather than a discussion of the fix.

  30. charles said on 6 May 2007 at 9:18 am:
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    Mitch, a person who calls himself barely a republican and refuses to take part in the committee for several years is hardly one to speak the current inner workings of the committee.

    Yes, the committee has gone through a transformation. But I go to the meetings. I remember the drag-out fights we used to have a couple of years ago, the contention, the vitriol.

    There is little of that now. Of course there are tensions, there are competing interests. People each month oppose each other on issues. That’s hardly a surprise, or the sign of a meltdown.

    I was at the meeting where we approved the schedule of primaries and conventions. I don’t remember any serious opposition to conventions, and nobody stood up and called the process unfair, or accused the committee of malfeasance.

    Each month candidates for office stood up, and all were treated politely, and had their chance to speak about their races, or any concerns they had about the conventions.

    Anybody can join the committee, and show up and vote on how we run things. We don’t have purges, I can’t remember the last time there was even a challenge to a name asking to join.

    We just had an election for VP, and the candidate requested by the President was DEFEATED. Hardly the work of a committee being taken over by a few in leadership. Tom couldn’t even get his own VP nominee.

    The “flap”, if there is a flap, is driven by Lucy bolting the party, and Lucas complaining about alleged mistreatment because Tom chose a convention, something a vast majority of the committee supported.

    I do admit that I’m not really “into” the committee. As Greg can tell you, I show up, try to talk to a few people if they aren’t busy, then sit in my own corner, by myself. I’m not the political person a lot of the members are. I do stand up when I have a point to make, and I vote my conscience on issues. Oddly, I many times vote with the minority, against the chair.

    So maybe I’m not in tune with all the petty back-stabbing, personal invective suggested by Mitch, thrown about by adults acting like spoiled children. Assuming there is such a thing which I don’t SEE at the committee meetings. Many people do call me naive, and I don’t mind.

  31. anon said on 6 May 2007 at 10:38 am:
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    Enough of us gluttons for punishment still attend the meetings, so I am sure Mitch hears about the current goings on.

  32. Sammy said on 6 May 2007 at 10:51 am:
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    Hey Charles, its going to be a nice day. Take a break from your computer and go for a walk or something. Let the rest of us participate in BVBL. If brevity is the soul of wit, you are becoming quite dull.

  33. Mitch Cumstein said on 6 May 2007 at 10:58 am:
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    You’re absolutely right, anon. I hear plenty from current Committee members and our elected officials to have a firm grip on what’s going on. And it really disgusts me.

  34. charles said on 6 May 2007 at 12:10 pm:
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    Mitch, the committee direction is set by the majority. If enought republicans felt like you (except you say you are hardly a republican) they could join up, vote in new leadership, and “fix” whatever it is you think is wrong.

    The committee is run by those who are willing to pay the fee, to show up, to commit to the republican party. It’s not a self-appointed cabal of underworld figures. It’s a democracy, and it is self-serving for a person who refuses to be a part of that democratic process to say it’s broken.

    Sammy, there isn’t a limit to the number of words on a subject here. My posts don’t in any way prevent you from commenting. They are clearly marked with my name so you can skip them at your leisure.

    Serious issues involve serious discussion, and that means using complete paragraphs. It’s easy to just do drive-by sound-bite analysis, but I’m not trying to win debate points, I’m trying to seriously discuss an issue. That means explaining in detail what I am and am not saying.

    Our political discourse has been gravely damaged by the sound-bite mentality that has effected so much of the conversation.

    I doubt Greg will take action against me, because I help rile up the commenters which brings him extra blog hits. But if he wants, he can remove my comments. He has removed my comments, small AND large, in the past for a variety of reasons.

  35. charles said on 6 May 2007 at 12:21 pm:
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    A little more info to ponder. I did some research, and I am correct, Tom Kopko cannot assign his 51st district chair to any other person. That’s the RPV rule — others have in the past tried to do so, and been prevented. Tom would probably love to get this off his plate, but has no choice.

    Im fact, Tom has turned over practical control to Pat for ALL aspects of this convention. That’s the best he can do, but if Pat reports Tom taking ANY steps after this, we can discuss it — Pat is the one now working with the candidates and working with them on committee assignments.

    Pat was Julie Lucas’s pick for this position. She obviously though picked him because she felt he would be acceptable to both parties — I commend her for that, as she could have tried to use this flap to push someone directly associated with her campaign.

    In fact, I’ve heard (but not confirmed) that Tom wanted to put Trent Barton in charge. Trent of course is a direct supporter of Julie (and remember, Tom endorsed Trent, a Lucas supporter, for the Vice Chair position, once again showing that the “conspiracy” against her and her supporters is mostly a fiction). But Trent can’t be convention chair, because he doesn’t live in the district.

    From all I’ve learned, Tom has done everything he is able to under the rules to relieve his obligations for this convention. He has never endorsed Gill, has not donated to Gill, and other than choosing a convention over a primary, has taken NO actions that favored Gill over Lucas.

  36. anon said on 6 May 2007 at 12:30 pm:
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    “Mitch, the committee direction is set by the majority. If enought republicans felt like you (except you say you are hardly a republican) they could join up, vote in new leadership, and “fix” whatever it is you think is wrong.”

    Except then they change the rules and kick us all out of the room so that we can’t vote.

  37. Even more tired of splitting hairs said on 6 May 2007 at 1:30 pm:
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    Charles, the sheer number of words that it has taken you to mount a defense of Kopko is an illustration of my original point. We don’t need a spotlight shining on inner party issues (and yes, there definitely were issues prior to this current situation). We shouldn’t need to have this ongoing discussion amongst republicans with fingers pointing here and there. We should be working together or at least giving the appearance of working together to the outside world at minimum. I would hope that the leadership of the party in Prince William would want the same, but sadly, time and time again this has been proven untrue. So I repeat, enough is enough.

  38. in a pickle said on 6 May 2007 at 2:04 pm:
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    “has taken NO actions that favored Gill over Lucas.”
    So Kopko’s web site writeup for Gill didn’t favor Gill? Oh, it was a “neutral” writeup?…… I see… But then, is that what he really did for Gill….. who knows?

  39. choo-choo said on 6 May 2007 at 3:22 pm:
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    There’s a super sale on Lionel trains over at the hobby store today at Manassas Mall. Why don’t you give your keyboard a friggin break and take you pompous self-glorified fat ass over there and partake in something else that’ll at least result in bringing you to almost a total orgasm - just watch out for the kids before you blow steam.

  40. Jonathan Mark said on 6 May 2007 at 3:36 pm:
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    “”"Generally it is considered good blog ettiquite to inform another blogger when you have written a piece which references his, especially to refute it.”"”

    No, it is considered rude to clutter someone else’s blog with messages which state “Hey, visit my blog! I talk about this subject also!”

    “”"I’m not “promoting” my blog.”"”

    You are. I don’t promote mine, you promote yours.

    “”"You do know, JM, that every post is signed with a name that generally is a link to the person’s blog, right?”"”

    Then you should be satisfied with that, instead of in addition announcing what you have up on your own website.

  41. Loudoun Insider said on 6 May 2007 at 3:47 pm:
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    I can’t believe that Charles thinks it would be better for Kopko to have given money to Gill than to receive money from Gill. This absolutely blows my mind! I’m still waiting to hear the reason Gill’s campiagn finance report had to be amended from $1,000 for consulting to $2,000 for website design. Are you telling me Gill simply forgot how much he paid Kopko and for what? Greg better watch out, I bet the real reason was Gill was distracted by all the negative publicity at BVBL! Expect another lawsuit soon!

  42. Sammy said on 6 May 2007 at 3:48 pm:
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    WHAT? Three hours without a endless post from Charles defending Kopko?

    There must be a Star Trek marathon on the Sci-Fi channel…..

  43. AWCheney said on 6 May 2007 at 3:50 pm:
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    Jonathan that really is a bit nitpicking…there’s plenty with which to scourge Charles without that. I, for one, don’t mind if he advertises his blog, and I doubt that Greg has any problem with it either (right Greg?).

  44. charles said on 6 May 2007 at 5:49 pm:
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    Even more tired of splitting hairs: I agree, we don’t need to be wasting our time on this stupid stuff, but I’ve got the time, and Greg thinks it’s important, so here we are.

    Anon (who got kicked out), I was at the meeting where people got “kicked out”, it was because they weren’t members yet. You don’t get to join until the end of a meeting, and then you can vote at the next meeting. That was the meeting I joined up, and I too was unable to vote at the meeting.

    I, unlike many of those who were there to join that evening, stayed till the end, was accepted, and have been attending on and off since.

    Sammy: See my blog to see how I spent my Sunday.

    in a pickle: I would have mentioned that, except I’ve been told by those who post here that Tom’s work was not a help to Gill, and I didn’t want to get into an argument over that. If you think his work for Gill was better than OP’s work for Lucas, take it up with Greg and the others here, I’m not comparing the web sites.

    LI: (I quote here): “I can’t believe that Charles thinks it would be better for Kopko to have given money to Gill than to receive money from Gill. This absolutely blows my mind! I’m still waiting to hear the reason Gill’s campiagn finance report had to be amended from $1,000 for consulting to $2,000 for website design. Are you telling me Gill simply forgot how much he paid Kopko and for what?”

    First, I specifically said I thought it was BETTER to be paid for his work than to GIVE money to Gill, not the other way around as you have said. I think donating money to Gill, or donating in-kind service, would raise more of an issue than receiving payment for a service. So you may “unblow” your mind now. I apologize if my posts misrepresented what I was trying to say.

    I can tell you why Gill’s report was amended — the original submission was wrong. It was caught on review, and fixed. Feel free to chastise Gill’s campaign for making mistakes in the report, at least it would be a complaint based on a fact. There was one bill, it was for $2,000. The $1000 was a typo.

    JM, when I run my cursor over your name, I see your blog, “GoodByeKen”, on my screen. If you feel that is wrong for you to do, you could clear the website line before posting. I don’t see a problem with it.

    Your statement of ethics in blogging is incorrect, as is your characterization of the circumstances. And if Greg does not wish to have a link to a blog that quotes his entry (which BTW, is what a trackback is for, if it worked for me I’d use it), he can delete it.

  45. anon said on 6 May 2007 at 6:57 pm:
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    If I recall correctly, the chairman at the time of the Grand Kickout (Brian Murphy) had stated that if you could not attend the convention, they would accept new members at the beginning of the next meeting. Having a family obligation, I and my spouse could not attend the convention. We were returning members, looking to re-up for the year, not join anew. The chairman changed his mind and did not allow new members at the beginning of the meeting as promised.

  46. Anonymous said on 6 May 2007 at 8:59 pm:
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    Not True 6:57pm.

    The agenda was put forward by the chairman with admissionb of new members at the beginning. When the agenda was considered the committee went into executive session and then voted to move admission to the end of the meeting.

  47. AWCheney said on 6 May 2007 at 11:07 pm:
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    It’s nice when you can change the rules on a wim, isn’t it. How would you define “manipulation” in political terms, Anonymous?

  48. Eyes wide open said on 6 May 2007 at 11:08 pm:
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    Charles doth protest too much.

    Don’t worry, JM, nobody looking at that big glob of hyperventilated text is going to think, “give me more of that stuff” and look for a blog that’s full of it.

    Did Kopko take the cash? Is he supposed to be impartial? Does he normally get $2000 for writing web-prose like, “Illegal immigration is a serious problem on which the federal government is failing us all. State policy should discourage illegal immigration while the federal government enforces federal laws?” Who does?

    Apart from the shadiness of it all, Kopko should be embarrassed about the fact it just isn’t very good writing. Maybe he should’ve gotten paid by the word like Dickens here.

  49. charles said on 6 May 2007 at 11:29 pm:
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    In a Pickle, please see the previous comment by “Eyes Wide Opened” for a person you can argue with about whether Tom’s work for Gill was an “unfair advantage” :-)

    I didn’t see Greg’s response to my observation about his mistake regarding who Tom was speaking about in Fairfax.

    I did some more digging, and found that the 11th district chair runs a printing operation, and was paid almost $30,000 by a candidate for office for printing in the last election cycle.

    If you think that a chair receiving $2000 for services is “really really bad” and requires resignation (which I disagree with), then what do you think about somone receiving almost 15 times that much?

    BTW, since this is a fairfax chair, could it be that THIS is what Tom was talking about, and not Lundgren?

    I think Greg owes Lundgren an apology for suggesting that Tom was accusing him of anything.

  50. Greg L said on 7 May 2007 at 12:10 am:
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    So when was the last time there was a primary challenge in the 11th Congressional District? And did the chair work on behalf of a candidate before the filing deadline for candidates had expired?

    I thought not. As for Eric Lundberg, Tom’s comments plainly meant that what he had done had been done in Fairfax. If he wasn’t referring to Eric, who was his peer in Fairfax last cycle, he should have been more specific about establishing who he was referring to. As for who you’ve proffered as this equivalent example, I have no idea. Frankly I haven’t had much time to even read many of the comments on these threads, and have tended not to read yours. I don’t have time to wade through them all this evening to divine the small pearl of wisdom buried within such voluminous rantings with all of the other stuff I’m working on.

    Although in the past I kept a very close eye on the threads, these days I don’t. About all I can do in watching threads these days is monitor the spammers, keep an eye on a few blatant troublemakers, and superficially scan what else coming in.

  51. Jonathan Mark said on 7 May 2007 at 12:17 am:
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    Why the mystery?

    What was the date of the payment? Was it during a primary or convention? Was it a Democratic or a Republican chairman? Who was the candidate? Was the printer a chairman during the time of the payment? What was this printer’s name? What was the printing company name?

    If there was nothing wrong with it and it happens all the time then why not tell us the specifics so we can check it out?

  52. AWCheney said on 7 May 2007 at 12:24 am:
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    Perhaps, Jonathan, it’s because Kopko hasn’t fed him that information yet. Charles, by his own admission, has little experience politically…so where else would he be getting fed what he has in his posts.

  53. freedom said on 7 May 2007 at 6:50 am:
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    ….kinda makes ya wonder “who else is ‘on the take,’” huh? :)

  54. Batson D. Belfrey said on 7 May 2007 at 7:45 am:
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    “Charles, the sheer number of words that it has taken you to mount a defense of Kopko is an illustration of my original point.”

    I think Charles is so conditioned to hit his required 750 words for his pissy little PN/MJM op/ed column, he couldn’t make a concise post on a blog if his life depended on it.

    I agree with Mitch. The Kopko clan has been destroying the PWCGOP for years. Now that he and his posse are in charge, the destruction is accelerating.

    Say Kopko’s plan works, and Gill gets the nomination. Will Kopko step down when Gill loses in November?

  55. Batson D. Belfrey said on 7 May 2007 at 7:52 am:
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    If someone needs to see an effective local GOP committee, one only has to look at Manassas. I wish the PWCGOP were more like the Manassas GOP. Their Chairman would never take money from a candidate. Do they have any internal conflicts? I would imagine that they do. The thing is that we never hear about it. It doesn’t make the papers. They don’t have candidates saying that the Chairman is dirty, or the process is flawed. The Manassas Committee is very successful. Look at the election results during the last few cycles.

    In PWC, this nomination contest is all bout the Chairman. All attention is being focused on the Chairman. Maybe this is part of Kopko’s plan. Focus all of the attention on himself, so people won’t see what a flawed candidate Gill really is. They are too busy saying what a bad chairman Kopko is….and they would be right.

  56. Austin said on 7 May 2007 at 1:16 pm:
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    Manassas has had the benefit of John Gregory’s leadership for years. When he stepped down and Tony took over, he was smart enough to continue to seek John’s guidance. Tony has done an outstanding job. the City has had problems, but they work through them and they work together!

  57. James Young said on 7 May 2007 at 1:37 pm:
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    Austin seems to forget — or perhaps never knew — that “the benefit of John Gregory’s [some would say iron-fisted] leadership for years” was one of the reasons why an independent Prince William County Republican Committee was formed in 1991… not coincidentally, about the same time that Republicans started winning elections in the County.

  58. Jonathan Mark said on 7 May 2007 at 3:21 pm:
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    People, you are being set up. The Kopko crew are a swarm of locusts who will pick the PWCRC dry, destroy the Republicans chances in HOD-51 and then move on, leaving the HOD in the clutches of Brian Moran’s Democratic majority.

    I ran an anti-Moran machine website called GoodbyeJim.com for years. Don’t understimate the insidiousness of machine politics. It is quite possible that Kopko could have a backroom deal with Brian Moran to deliver HOD to the Democrats by nominating the unelectable former chief lobbyist for the terrorist-led American Muslim Council, Faisal Gill.

    HOD-51 is normally Republican territory. That is why the Dems need the Republicans to nominate someone who is so bad, whose reputation is so smelly, who has such a history of working for or on behalf of a criminal, that even Republicans won’t hold their noses and vote for the guy.

    Almost unique among PWCRC members, Faisal Gill IS THAT MAN! Faisal Gill is the one man who can turn over HOD-51 and place it in the Democratic column in November.

    Which returns us to the whole point of this thread. Conventions involve a number of on-the-spot decisions by County chairmen which affect who wins. Examples are whether to let the proceedings drag on and on to give the hand-picked candidate more time to round up supporters, how closely to examine the credentials of the hand-picked favorite delegates, even who gets to speak first and last.

    So why did Kopko accept $2000 from the former chief lobbyist for the American Muslim Council, a man with a lotta baggage. Couldn’t Gill win on his own without paying Kopko?

    What if Kopko is actually a Brian Moran plant? What if Kopko is secretly trying to sabotage the Republicans in HOD-51 so that Brian Moran and the Dems can take back the HOD?

    Don’t forget, Faisal Gill’s law partner, noted sharia-law-in-the-USA advocate Asim Ghafoor, has given $4800 to Brian Moran in this election cycle. http://vpap.org/donors/results_level2.cfm?Key=INP000298665

    Why did Ghafoor (who was also Gill’s nominal employer at the AMC, yet another coincidence worth pursuing) give Brian Moran $4800 last autumn? Ghafoor has also donated $500 to Corey Stewart on 10/10/06

    People, all I am asking you to do is connect the dots. Gill pays Kopko thousands, Ghafoor pays Brian Moran thousands. Can’t you see that something is going on that those four (Brian Moran, Ghafoor, Gill and Kopko) don’t want the public to know about?

  59. Karen Ulrich said on 7 May 2007 at 3:47 pm:
    Flag comment

    The RPV will allow Tom Kopko to turn over his proxy for the 51st District.

  60. Batson D. Belfrey said on 7 May 2007 at 4:31 pm:
    Flag comment

    “Austin seems to forget — or perhaps never knew — that “the benefit of John Gregory’s [some would say iron-fisted] leadership for years” was one of the reasons why an independent Prince William County Republican Committee was formed in 1991… not coincidentally, about the same time that Republicans started winning elections in the County.”

    Ok James. Since it is clear that you have a different perspective, perhaps you can offer an elxplanation as to why it appears that the Manassas committee is much better run then the PWC Committee. I never hear about problems with convention calls, candidates accusing the leadership of favoritism. I haven’t heard that their chairman has accepted money from a candidate. I haven’t read any bad press about their party at all. Most telling is that Republican candidates at all levels win in Manassas. Allen won there, while he lost in the county.

    IMHO it appears that the Chairman of the PWC could learn a lot from the Manassas Chairman.

  61. James Young said on 7 May 2007 at 6:54 pm:
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    Well, “Batson,” I’m not saying that the PWC Committee is all sweetness and light, but you’d have a hard time convincing many Republicans in the County that all ran smoothly and effectively under Gregory’s leadership, either. The trains ran on time in Hitler’s Germany and Stalin’s Russia, as well (not to compary Tony, or John, for that matter, to either). And I don’t know all of the provisions of the Manassas Party Plan, either. I do know that the PWC Party Plan was specifically written to empower the grass roots, rather than a strong Party Chairman. Furthermore, the County is much larger geographically and more diverse than Manassas City.

    Besides, I have no doubt (almost said “suspect”) that if Tony Kostelecky were representing someone suing Greg, you most assuredly would have heard bad things about Tony on these pages. It is little surprise that such comments have filtered their way into the so-called MSM.

  62. Batson D. Belfrey said on 7 May 2007 at 9:10 pm:
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    Thanks “James”, for not answereing my question. I asked you, specifically, why you don’t ever hear about party infighting, invalidated calls, accusations of favoritism, MSM stories about the Manassas Chairman making outbursts at debates? Why is it that the Manassas GOP appears to be a well-run, unified group, who also appears to be very successful?Why is it that Manassas GOP doesn’t get all of this negative press?

    The question was about both committee’s leadership. Your example of Tony Kostelecky representing a litigant against Greg is not applicable. Kopko isn’t a lawyer. Gill is. Kopko is the leader of the PWC GOP. Gill is not. It think they call what you are trying to do a “misdirection”.

    Also, it wasn’t a commentary on John Gregory’s leadership. While I know little about the man, what I do know is that he is highly respected in Manassas GOP circles, almost an icon. I also know from talking to Manassas Republicans over the years, the transition from Gregory to Kostelecky was “bloodless”, while the PWC GOP cannot make the same claim.

    While I will give you the whole “County is bigger than Manassas” argument, I’ve looked at the last census data. If anything, Manassas should lean more Democrat, but it doesn’t. I’ve looked at the City compared to various precincts throughout the county. Manassas has, as a percentage, as many Dem-leaning precincts as PWC does. So why the big difference?

    I invited you to an honest discussion. I asked you why do you think that the Manassas GOP seems to have their house in order, presents a united front, and as a result, is much more succesful than the County? SInce you seem to have long memory regarding PWC politics, I was genuinely interested in your thoughts on this topic. Instead of presenting a logical argument, you bashed their previous Chiarman, and came up with a ridiculous theory about their current Chairman. Maybe I should have asked AWC?

    I think it boils down to leadership. Manassas has effective, results-oriented leadership. Their Chairman cares about the party, not getting his firends elected, or using the Chairmanship as a means to financially enrich himself, or a springboard to elected office. In politics and war, effective leadership is everything.

    If positive results the true measure of effective leadership, then I can only conclude that Manassas City GOP has it, and sadly, the PWC GOP does not.

  63. charles said on 7 May 2007 at 10:14 pm:
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    Greg, maybe your complaint is specific to “working while a nomination is pending”, but many others say it is wrong for the chair to do ANY work for any candidate, regardless of whether there is a contest. Several of your commenters, for example Nova Scout, has said so.

    And in fact Julie has said so as well. I quote from her e-mail:

    “My personal belief is that it is a conflict of interest for any candidate to retain the Chairman as a paid staff member. ”

    Ignoring that she mistakenly attributes the conflict to the other candidate, rather than making the focus the Chair, and mistakenly claims Tom is a “paid staff member” when he was simply hired to perform a service, she does not qualify that as to when it happens.

    Since Tom has through his arguments essentially agreed that he would not accept payment for service if there was a contest, there is very little disagreement here between his position and yours. You believe he should refrain from any work until he knows there is no other candidate (I happen to agree with you, because it would avoid situations like this), while Tom at least previously thought it was OK so long as there was no competition at the time of the service.

    However, I bet if he were asked to re-do this, he would turn down the job. That might be something interesting to ask Tom — did you know he has an e-mail account and you can ask him anything you want to know?

    If you weren’t trying to blow this up into some huge deal when it’s just a blip on the radar screen, you’d probably be able to get the committee to pass a rule specifically to preclude the chair being paid by candidates, which supposedly is what you are really concerned about.

    But your approach makes that virtually impossible, at least until after the 51st convention.

    If you do want to persue this however, let me know, we might be able to agree on wording and present it at a future meeting.

  64. charles said on 7 May 2007 at 10:19 pm:
    Flag comment


    I totally agree with you on this point: “Do they have any internal conflicts? I would imagine that they do. The thing is that we never hear about it. It doesn’t make the papers. They don’t have candidates saying that the Chairman is dirty, or the process is flawed.”

    I would be extremely pleased if the candidates in Prince William would refrain from saying to the Washington Post that the Chairman is dirty, or the process is flawed.

  65. charles said on 7 May 2007 at 10:28 pm:
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    JM said “Which returns us to the whole point of this thread. Conventions involve a number of on-the-spot decisions by County chairmen which affect who wins. ”

    Actually, JM, once the convention elects the convention chair, the CONVENTION CHAIR makes all those “on-the-spot” decisions. Tom will have no power at the convention when Pat O’leary is elected.

    That is why Greg had to plant doubts about Pat’s ability to run a fair convention, calling Pat a “somewhat elderly man who is not likely prepared for what may await him at a convention”.

    Karen: It was my belief that a proxy can be revoked, so giving a proxy does not itself alleviate the alleged “control” issues. However, is Pat not effectively operating now as Tom’s proxy? I thought that’s what Greg said here somewhere.

    Maybe you could explain what Pat’s actual role is here, and whether you think he’s too old to be prepared for his job?

  66. Mitch Cumstein said on 7 May 2007 at 10:37 pm:
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    Why should “the candidates in Prince William refrain from saying to the Washington Post that the Chairman is dirty, or the process is flawed?”

    If they believe this to be true (as I certainly do), they have both the right and responsibility to share it with the public.

  67. Greg L said on 7 May 2007 at 10:39 pm:
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    I also fail to see where this allegation was made.

  68. AWCheney said on 7 May 2007 at 10:39 pm:
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    “You believe he should refrain from any work until he knows there is no other candidate…”

    Are you saying, Charles, that Kopko can only get work within the areas in which he has the responsibilities of unit chairman? That is very much an indictment of his competence.

  69. AWCheney said on 7 May 2007 at 11:02 pm:
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    With regard to the “John Gregory” days: John was one of a number of prominent Manassas Republican activists who did much to help establish the Republican Party as a, not only viable, but increasingly successful entity in Prince William County without continuous infighting and power plays. What I remember from those days is that they, along with a great many members of the Committee from the County, kept things running smoothly with ample funding, volunteers, and organizational talent. As in every diverse group you had your factions, but for some reason everyone was able to come together for the general election campaigns and work hand-in-hand, regardless of whom they supported pre-nomination. And what I remember MOST was that the Republican Party was constantly growing in those days, building to the point that Prince William County became a Republican County…it wasn’t something that happened overnight in the ’90’s, as many would have us believe.

  70. Greg L said on 7 May 2007 at 11:18 pm:
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    I find it interesting that Pat O’Leary was a delegate for Faisal Gill before Michele McQuigg suggested he be offered as the convention chair.

    Pat by all accounts is a good and honorable man who has been out of the political realm for quite some time, and I’m not sure he’s prepared to be put in the middle of a contentious convention fight. Tom has decided that he would provide assistance to Mr. O’Leary during the convention, just in case he needs it.

    It’s actually a pretty interesting setup.

  71. Jonathan Mark said on 8 May 2007 at 1:51 am:
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    “”"she mistakenly attributes the conflict to the other candidate, rather than making the focus the Chair,”"”

    Charles, “the other candidate” (Faisal Gill) was the one who paid Kopko. That is what this controversy is about. Kopko accepted money from one of the two candidates for the nomination.

    If it was wrong for Kopko to accept Gill’s money then it was wrong for Gill to offer it. Unless Charles is claiming that Gill didn’t know that Kopko was the PWCRC chair.

  72. Batson D. Belfrey said on 8 May 2007 at 10:21 am:
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    If Charles were elected as the the PWC GOP “Chair”, would it be a “High-chair”?

  73. AWCheney said on 8 May 2007 at 2:00 pm:
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    No Batson…the “High-chair” position would be filled by Jimmy Young.

  74. anon said on 8 May 2007 at 2:48 pm:
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    “and mistakenly claims Tom is a “paid staff member” when he was simply hired to perform a service,”


    Honest-to-Pete, do you really believe this pap you write?

    Tom got money for doing work for Gill. If someone is a paid staff member, they also get paid for doing work for Gill.

    Honestly, there must be some neurons misfiring that enable you to make these kind of bizarre distinctions.

    I certainly understand if you think it is okay for a committee leader to work for (perform work for, perform a service for) one candidate over another. I don’t agree, but I understand it. But this — your machinations are, quite frankly, beyond comprehension. Working for, performing work for, performing a service for — they are all synonymous.

  75. James Young said on 8 May 2007 at 5:31 pm:
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    Poor AWCheney. So bitter that her prominence and influence have been surpassed by … well, virtually anyone with a name and a brain.

    That she finds solace with the likes of Democrat JM and cowardly “Mitch Cumstein” speaks volumes. Too stupid to consider that “Mitch’s” claim to GOP credentials are a smokescreen for a Democrat trying to sow GOP dissension.

  76. Jonathan Mark said on 8 May 2007 at 7:43 pm:
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    I figured it out.

    James Young has decided that any discussion of Faisal’s activities at the American Muslim Council puts Faisal on the defensive and hurts Faisal’s candidacy.

    So Young cannot defend Faisal. His response to legitimate criticisms of Faisal is to change the subject with fairly uninventive bile. In a short sentence he calls AW Cheney, a good Republican, “bitter,” Mitch “cowardly” and me, inaccurately, “Democrat.”

    It is because you will never, not ever, hear Jim say “Faisal did X at the American Muslim Council and that was okay for Faisal to do X at the AMC because…”

    Young doesn’t want to be on the defensive. He has an extraordinarily weak candidate on his hands.

  77. AWCheney said on 8 May 2007 at 7:54 pm:
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    Jonathan, considering Jimmy Young considers himself such a preeminent attorney and should know better, he seems to have a great deal of difficulty comprehending any facts…except those he has deemed relevant within the narrow confines of his own personal prejudices. “Uninventive bile” is pretty much the extent of his commentary capabilities.

  78. AWCheney said on 8 May 2007 at 8:11 pm:
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    BTW Jimmy…I never cared much about “prominence and influence.” I always preferred to believe that, if people listened to me, it was because I had something of value to convey. Actually, I generally tried very hard to remain in the background…my ego never needed constant stroking, unlike some people.

  79. James Young said on 8 May 2007 at 11:26 pm:
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    Well, JM, I suppose I could respond to charges that Faisal, as one of Pakistani origin, “treats women like sheep, and vice versa,” in Ann Coulter’s famous construction, but responding to such a ridiculous claim would be as productive as responding to your ridiculous constructions. Your not interested in the truth, anyway. And just because you were a little too nutty to be elected to a Democrat committee position in Fairfax doesn’t mean that you’re not a Democrat. Let’s see: you attack Faisal Gill (GOP candidate); you have a website dedicated to attacking Ken Cuccinelli (GOP Senator); you attack Jim Moran (whose sin — a major one, to my mind, but hardly his only one — is that he is anti-Semitic).

    There she goes again. AWCheney and her fixation on the “ego” of others. That pesky “projection” rears its ugly head once more.

    But just FYI, OWW, I’ve never said any such thing about myself. Whether I am “a preeminent attorney” is best judged by others. Your efforts at belittlement would be much more credible if you bothered to find one such judgment: http://www.martindale.com/xp/Martindale/Lawyer_Locator/Search_Lawyer_Locator/search_detail.xml?STS=51&LNAME=Young&CN=Springfield&PG=1&bc=65&CRY=1&ratind=&FN=&FNAME=&STYPE=N&a=1F5087BCEE275B91&l=8DBEF52B5D95C8F9&type=2&pos=1&cnt=1. Just click on the “AV Peer Rated” link to learn that for which the “A” stands.

  80. James Young said on 8 May 2007 at 11:30 pm:
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    And one more thing, AWCheney: your claim to have “never cared much about ‘prominence and influence’” rings hollow, given your desperate attempts to obtain it my smearing Republican candidates. Adults generally learn to respect those who stand up for principles, even if they are principles with which they disagree. When you learn that, perhaps you’ll obtain the “prominence and influence” for which you so desperately yearn… at least among those unfamiliar with your sleazy record.

  81. AWCheney said on 8 May 2007 at 11:55 pm:
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    You really don’t have any idea just how foolish and childish your persistent ranting makes you appear do you Jimmy? Very sad.

  82. Jonathan Mark said on 9 May 2007 at 4:51 am:
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    “”"Well, JM, I suppose I could respond to charges that Faisal, as one of Pakistani origin, “treats women like sheep, and vice versa,” in Ann Coulter’s famous construction,”"”"

    I have not said that, or even thought it, so there would be no reason for you to respond to it.

    What I would like you to respond to is a simple question. What were the initial start dates and final end dates of Faisal Gill’s employment at the American Muslim Council?

    Usually when people apply for a job they provide a complete work history. Faisal doesn’t.

    “”"but responding to such a ridiculous claim would be as productive as responding to your ridiculous constructions.”"”

    That is not what is going on here. Rather, James Young has decided that if he defended Gill’s work at the AMC with specifics then Gill would be on the defensive. That would weaken Gill. So it is better for Young to attack-the-messenger, thus changing the subject.

    Gill was the chief lobbyist for the AMC, whose founder, leader and funder Abdurahman Alamoudi said that the AMC lobbied for Hamas, according to the 3/1/2004 edition of Insight On The News: “‘On June 2, 2000, the U.S.-based al-Zaitounah newspaper interviewed Alamoudi in English on his pro-Hamas activities at the AMC. “Our position with regard to the peace process is well-known,” he said. “We are the ones who went to the White House and defended what is called Hamas.’”

    Alamoudi is now in jail serving a 23-year sentence for money laundering.

  83. Batson D. Belfrey said on 9 May 2007 at 6:22 am:
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    Something else James Young would not do, was to answer my question regarding why it seems that the Republicans in Manassas have such a better run party, then PWC does. I think Manassas has something that we don’t find in PWC; Effective Leadership.

  84. James Young said on 9 May 2007 at 10:17 am:
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    “Batson,” you have fallen into the familiar Democrat trap of dismissing points with which you disagree with the lack of an answer. I hardly need to serve as your foil if you’re going to dismiss my rejoinder and simply make the point you wanted to in the first place.

    What is “very sad,” OWW, is your expectation that you can attack others with your elaborate insults, and then attack them with belittlement for having the temerity to respond/defend themselves. Here’s a prime example: you attacked me for “considering … [my]self such a preeminent attorney.”

    Now, I suppose that I could have just dismissed you as a vicious, bitter old b****, but then Greg would delete my comment, and probably block my access to the site once again.

    Instead, I point out that such a judgment is best made by others, and point you to a source, i.e., facts, where you might learn what others, positioned better than you to judge, think. Doubtless to your chagrin you learned that the Martindale-Hubbell rating to which I referred you rates my legal ability (from judges, attorneys, and even opposing counsel, who apparently treat their litigation opponents with more respect than you render to your political enemies) as “Very High to Preeminent,” which rather thoroughly undercuts your belittlement. Rather than apologizing and moving on (since it wouldn’t serve your emnity), you resort to attacking/belittling me for defending myself.

    Nice little vicious circle strategy, if you’re allowed to get away with it.

    I’ve no doubt that repeating lies is an effective political tactic which you have mastered over the years, but one lesson that Conservatives have learned over the years is to not allow flagrant lies and fictions to go unanswered.

  85. Jonathan Mark said on 9 May 2007 at 12:20 pm:
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    “”"“Batson,” you have fallen into the familiar Democrat trap of dismissing points with which you disagree with the lack of an answer.”"”

    Actually, that is James Young’s approach as well. Faisal Gill is refusing to provide a complete work history to the voters.

    Tell us, James Young, when did Faisal Gill first work for the American Muslim Council as either an employee or a consultant, and when did Gill last work for the AMC?

    You know, many employers will not consider hiring an applicant who has unexplained holes in his resume. Voters can be particular in that way as well.

    So tell us James Young, if you can, when did Faisal Gill first work for the American Muslim Council?

  86. Batson D. Belfrey said on 9 May 2007 at 2:16 pm:
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    ““Batson,” you have fallen into the familiar Democrat trap of dismissing points with which you disagree with the lack of an answer.”

    And you use the same old lawyer trick of misdirection. If you compare the current state of the PWC GOP, under Kopko, with that of another local unit, Manassas, it is easy to see that Kopko’s leadership is doing harm to the Party. Kopko has become the story. This is bad. He needs to go. In politics, results do count. Kopko has few positive results on which to hang his hat. If garnering bad press where the metric used to determine his success, he’d be the most successful guy around. Sadly, it is not.

    You may try to call me a Democrat. I have never voted for a Democrat in my life. I know what you’ll say, you have no way to verify this. I want to see the PWC GOP strong and successful, running the best candidates for office. Kopko is not the guy to make this happen. You defend mediocrity. A mediocre Chairman, with mediocre results, mediocre reputation, backing mediocre candidates like Chapman and worse, Gill.

  87. James Young said on 9 May 2007 at 3:54 pm:
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    I did NOT “try to call [you] a Democrat,” “Batson.” For all I know, you ARE one, but I did not “try to call” you one. I merely cited your reference to a familiar Democrat refrain.

    As for the notion that “Kopko’s leadership is doing harm to the Party,” I recognize that you apparently buy into the notion that Party leadership should simply fold under a lot of (mostly anonymously/pseudonymously-inspired or, worse yet, obviously Democrat-inspired) heat, so long as the heat is the kind of which you personally approve. What you should have learned by now, if you are of the generation that I think you are, is that the kind of leadership you describe is not leadership at all, but cowardice. I doubt that would advocate such a rule if I were as bitterly opposed to the current leadership as you seem to be. The notion that you are applying an objective standard here is ludicrous. You want Kopko to go because you loathe the candidates he supports, or that you think he supports. Your entire record of posts here makes that abundantly clear.

    Is Kopko perfect? Not by a damn sight. In fact, I’m pretty sure that the last perfect leader died nearly two millenia ago, and even then, had fewer than a score of people He could really trust, or who really trusted Him.

    ‘Fact is, the GOP has done just fine under Kopko’s leadership, doing well to resist enormous anti-GOP sentiments and trends nationwide. Your complaint isn’t really that he isn’t a successful leader, but that he’s leading in a direction you don’t apparently like. Show me an officeholder who doesn’t stir up passions, and I’ll show you an officeholder who is little more than a cipher, and who certainly is not a “leader” in any meaningful sense of the word. And while you certainly could be correct, Kopko has the virtue of having actually run and won the authority to make those decisions, while neither you (nor I) have.

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