The Dillard Doctrine

Urban Conservative Commentary on Politics & Life

Who Dares, Wins

Today in Richmond, the Republican Party of VA (RPV) State Central Committee (SCC) voted to remove the sitting chairman, Jeff Frederick. This was the end of a drama that played itself out over the couple months (and, I’ve been told, extends back further than that).

Personally, I had no problem with the job Frederick was doing. I had met him back at the Capitol in February, and-while not completely impressed-thought he seemed to have a pretty good handle on things. So, as the drama progressed, I didn’t really take a side…just asked for common sense to break out and said that, barring any serious transgressions, Frederick should keep his job.

That didn’t happen.

In the post I wrote for the RPVNetwork, I also said the following:

Finally, to the grassroots-the people doing the heavy lifting for the RPV that go unrecognized and unheard: continue to stand strong on what you believe. Accountability begins at home, and the leadership isn’t the majority-you are. They work for you, not the other way around. Be prepared to act in the Party’s best interest when they aren’t, because the loudest voice belongs to the largest group regardless of where they sit in the chain of command.

So, now I’m compelled to ask, what now?

The problem is, I already know. And I say this based on my own observations of Republican politics over the last year.

Republicans get mad over issues, over leadership, over candidates. If someone they don’t like becomes the candidate of choice-see John McCain in 2008-they will voice their displeasure. If a vote doesn’t break in their favor, they will threaten to replace those who didn’t vote the party line (or who voted against it, as appropriate).

But, come election time, those same people who made all the noise, all the complaints, all the threats….march right to the voting booth and vote for the very candidates they complained about. Why? Because even in their displeasure, the thought of having someone in office who’d they never agree with overshadows the one disagreement they currently have.

Observers know this. Campaign managers and strategists know this. Candidates know it. And, probably most importantly, the people who are at this moment upset about Frederick’s ouster know it too.

So, I say this:

Unless the members of the RPV are willing to stand up for what they really believe and not just make vague threats (“backlash” is the word going around now), don’t make them. If the prospect of a Governor Moran, Governor Deeds, or Governor McAuliffe really bothers you that much, don’t threaten to not vote in the fall election.

However, if those things don’t bother you that much; if you’re prepared to live in Virginia under another Democratic administration just to prove a point to the RPV, then stand up and act on that principle. Don’t make the statements about how much you’re mad at McDonnell for backing Frederick’s removal, and then follow that with a cry for unity to win an election. If you’re truly that upset, then express that frustration in your actions, not just empty words.

I have no bone to pick here. I stayed out of this fight on purpose, knowing it would either end with a united party, or one that talked big thoughts of revolt but would not act on them. I have nothing to gain from seeing the McDonnell/Bolling/(insert attorney general candidate here) win, nor do I have anything to gain from seeing them lose.

All I know is that if someone makes a threat, they’d better be prepared to follow it through. And if they’re not, then they should keep quiet.

As the Brits would say…who dares, wins.




Written by Coby Dillard

April 4, 2009 at 10:00 pm

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