ECDisappointed. This was the word that Chairman John Rieley of the Sussex County GOP Executive Committee used several times in addressing the issue of the leaked email concerning the viability of a Vance Phillips campaign for re-election.

The chairman was disappointed that the email had been leaked, disappointed that it had been published, by a sitting ED (that would be me), he expressed his disappointment in several matters, none of which seemed to include disappointment in his own behavior, or that of the Advisory Board’s.

The chairman was clearly upset that what he described as an internal memo, or communication, had been given out and them published and discussed on the radio.

But again, it seems, that he was not upset that the AB had taken it upon themselves to make a major policy decision for the entire Executive Committee, without first, let me repeat that, without first brining it to the EC for discussion and a vote.

Now anyone there will tell you that the Chairman directly challenged me on this issue by saying, “Frank if you knew the rules as well as you think you do, you would know that we were going to bring up the resolution this month”.

And as I pointed out to the chairman, that would seem to be just a little too late, since he had already communicated the resolution to Mr. Phillips. Seems as though the chairman also knows the rules and chose to ignore them. You see after last month’s Advisory Board meeting they could have come to the Executive Committee meeting, only an hour later, and suspended the rules to ask for debate and a vote on the resolution immediately, because you see, even though there were measures put into place to stop the flow of resolutions being brought to the floor on a monthly basis, I don’t believe they were ever actually placed into the bi-laws, and they can be put aside on time sensitive issues.

So simply placing the resolution on this month’s agenda, after being caught, means little if the resolution’s message has already been delivered.

What if after he had communicated the message of the AB to Mr. Phillips, the rest of the EC had shown support of Mr. Phillips? (highly unlikely as that may be)

Well Mr. Chairman, you may have every right to be disappointed and upset, but in my view so do the rest of the EC, and if they would stop being mad about the email being leaked, and recognize that they are being treated in the same manner that so upset them only four short years ago, then they too would be disappointed. As am I.

So many people have missed the point of this whole incident. Either they think it is about the legal charges pending against Vance Phillips, or they think it is about a leaked email, when what is really about is that a small group of people got together and made a decision for a larger group of people, then one man chose to communicate that decision.

Ron Sams was run out of the chairmanship for being accused of behavior much the same as we have seen from the current Sussex GOP administration, Sams was accused of backroom deals and manipulation of campaigns and candidates, without input from the committee as a body whole, that is exactly what has happened here.

It is very easy for the chairman and the AB to now say they had every intention of bringing the resolution to the rest of the EC, and to hide behind the rules that they themselves ignored in communicating the resolution to Mr. Phillips prior to it being voted on. One has to question whether the EC would have been made aware of the resolution at all, had the email not been leaked.

Or more likely Mr. Phillips would have been allowed to quietly “retire”, if he were so inclined, rather than having the GOP stand up and state honestly that it was distancing itself from Mr. Phillips and his troubles. It seems that the chairman put his friendship with Mr. Phillips first, they worked together on several campaigns including Glen Urquhart’s, and Mr. Rieley mentioned that he communicated the resolution to Mr. Phillips prior to notifying the EC out of respect and his having been a friend for so long.

Well Mr. Chairman, I am disappointed that you put your personal relationships before your duties and responsibilities to the party. You did not follow the rules that you quoted last night, instead you allowed yourself to be painted into a corner by Fred Silva and others who were at the AB meeting the night the resolution was passed, though you were not,and then you compounded that by not waiting to contact Mr. Phillips, until after the entire EC had a chance to discuss and vote on the resolution.

So do the rules apply to all within the Executive Committee? Or not?



14 Comments on "Disappointed"

  1. Mike Protack says:

    The antics of the De GOP at every level is pretty disgusting. Until the DE GOP settles its never ending squabbles and personal agendas there is no reason for any Republican to run statewide or county wide in NCC, it is a lost cause.

    Republican policies can move this state ahead but republican pettiness dooms everything.

  2. Steel Remington says:

    You buried yourself, Steve Grossman, Jeff Cragg, Rt1 PAC and Delaware Wrong in one full swipe of your key board!

    Time did tell! Oh, how light saber will travel now!

  3. Harry Whittington says:

    Last night everyone who entered the meeting had to sign in and I watched the Chairman question one person about why they were at the meeting, two things I’ve never seen at a SCGOP meeting before. I suppose leadership felt that these tactics would be an intimidating show of strength, but instead it made them look defensive and scared on top of already looking slimy and underhanded.

    It was an overall fail for the SCGOP.

    Meet the new boss, same as worse than the old boss.

  4. Steel Remington says:

    Known executive policy for most organizations is for people to sign in. Unfortunately there are some who think they are too good to sign like they are supposed too. This is been a long standing policy to sign in, so why would anyone have an objection.

    Its obvious with so many cry babies, that maybe they need to assess their own worth to the mission statement of the greater good, promoting harmony and party unity within SCGOP “What have you done for the GOP lately” regarding volunteerism, manning the poles, promoting candidates, fundraising, suggesting constructive ideas on moving forward rather than attacking and tearing down your colleagues and the party’s infrastructure by means of inflammatory blogs.

    My question is, “Why is your focus on SCGOP, which has traditionally been a bastion of conservative idology.” Who is behind this decisive strategy?

    Your comments reflect a more “progressive” liberal agenda not shared by the populous of the SCGOP electorate.

    Get on you death star and warp speed away, Kemosabe!

  5. Harry Whittington says:

    I’ve been going to SCGOP meetings for quite some time, I was even there for the 2010 “revolution,” (in hindsight another fail), and no one chased down people going into those meetings and forced them to sign in.Your alleged “long standing policy” of people signing in at SCGOP meetings doesn’t pass the smell test or the reality test.

    maybe they need to assess their own worth to the mission statement of the greater good, promoting harmony and party unity within SCGOP “What have you done for the GOP lately” regarding volunteerism, manning the poles, promoting candidates, fundraising, suggesting constructive ideas on moving forward rather than attacking and tearing down your colleagues and the party’s infrastructure by means of inflammatory blogs.

    The blog post wasn’t inflammatory, the email was. If anyone should be assessing their own worth within the party it should be Chairman Reily, not Frank Knotts.

  6. Dave Jones says:

    Signing in? You have to sign into a meeting where everyone is a volunteer?? I’ve been on numerous boards of charities and have never been asked to sign in.

    Also why the need for all of these committee’s? As who has served twice on the GOP executive committee everyone knows that the real discussions go on afterwards at the bar. Aren’t Republicans supposed to be for smaller government?

    Finally, the leaked email. I tell all candidates to use email for things such; “are we are on for lunch tomorrow?”. All emails with anything reeks of gossip, dirt, paybacks, threats, etc always get leaked. Once at a campaign meeting we finalized the last lit piece and was emailed to the opposition while we’re at the table. (the guy who sent it was trying to get some amore going with the opposition’s sister) Never put anything in email that you can’t put in the church bulletin. I also tell candidates assumed you’re being taped and that a spy is at the fundraiser. Last cycle two D spies showed up at an event. I said welcome, offered them a beer and out the door they bolted because “their cover was blown”.

  7. Dave says:

    Any meeting of formal organization should be conducted according to their bylaws, procedures, etc. In fact, the SC GOP “Rules” state that verification of attendance/membership is necessary to determine a quorum and also to validate proxies. Signing in is a normal means of providing that information (and verifying registration).

    What’s interesting is that in this one instance, it appears that the SC GOP is following their own rules. How perfectly odd!

  8. Harry Whittington says:

    Dave the verification of attendance clause in the rules is specifically and only for the Sussex County Executive Committee to ensure a quorum for their votes. It doesn’t apply to any republican attending the meeting who is not on the EC. If I’m not a voting member of the EC, my attendance doesn’t need to be verified because I won’t be voting and I have no bearing on whether or not a quorum is achieved.

    There is no “sign in” clause for the general public in the SCGOP rules.

  9. Dave Jones says:

    I grew up under the Al Pagano era when Newark when the GOP had 6 out of 7 House seats. Nothing was recorded, minutes were a sentence or 2, maybe, and we all socialized non stop. Everybody could speak, verbal brawls were the norm, point counter point went on for hours and everybody left happy. Someone, somewhere, had a copy of the by-laws last changed in the 50’s but all RD’s had a crackerjack GOTV plan. I was taught that politics was about function over form versus form over function.
    We always met at a bar and each meeting was a chance for a 50/50. The annual clambake brought in thousand’s and we had own HQ on Main Street in Newark. Kids were welcomed with a play area and a changing area. A tie was a serious no-no and shorts were the norm. Come the fall all attendees took home yard signs for themselves and a commitment to have 10 neighbor’s take them as well.
    Politics should be fun and for some reason now for years in Sussex, sadly, it seems not to be.
    Pagano always told us, make it fun, for serious and rigid structure drives away the average volunteer.

  10. Frank Knotts says:

    Don’t forget the assigned seating! Harry is right. The public signing in should be optional, if they wish to get on a mailing list or volunteer. Last night the table for sign in was nearly blocking the doorway, and Duke Brooks and others were mandating sign in. Most likely out of fear that there would be press in the room, which I am fairly sure there was not.
    The problem we have, in my view, is that those who have gained control of the committee, do not realize that they have fallen into the same traps that they condemned others for.

  11. Dave says:

    The rules state that “All regular SCEC meetings shall be open to attendance by all registered Republicans.” I’m not sure what process is normally used or should be used, but I know if I was running the meetings, I would have a print out of the registered Republicans and check off as people arrived. That’s tantamount to signing in since non-Republicans are not (theoretically) invited. Of course, it’s not my party, nor my rules but since members vote for EC members, it’s probably the appropriate thing to do.

    Then again, since your rules allow for a total of 135 total possible SCEC members, I kinda wonder about the naming convention being employed. After all, has anyone ever heard of an executive committee of 135? That’s a lot of executives, especially for small government folks! Still, it sounds as if there if the rules are sort of guidelines, depending on the leadership and time.

    It’s just my observation, but it should make you wonder, if you can’t govern yourselves, how do you expect to govern a county or a state?

  12. waterpirate says:

    Oh what a tangled web they weave. Shame on chairman Reilley for putting in writing, on the internet, what should have been a ” face to face” conversation with Vance. The SCEC is choking on the very opus that they call the rules. It is choking on the expansion of itself and the unwillingness to be accepting of others, it chooses by its own writings to be exclusionary and closed minded. Untill those that stormed the EC wither and die the EC is doomed. It is discourageing good people from gettting involved and participating. If you are not growing and evolveing, you are dieing. I will say again ” it is no longer the 50’s, and no matter how much you opine for those days gone by, they are gone”.

  13. Don Ayotte says:

    “Republican policies can move this state ahead but republican pettiness dooms everything.”

    You have gotten this one right. This is a clear example of pettiness at an unbelievable level. Frank is absolutely right and everybody else is wrong, as usual. Even though he has the right to post what he wants, does he really want to hand this council seat over to Bob Wheatly. A republican primary severely weakens the remaining politically injured republican candidate. The only loser in this scenario would be the people of Sussex County. If Vance Phillips had the people of his district in mind, he would back out of the race and support a candidate that can win.

  14. Frank Knotts says:

    Thank you Don, because what Republicans need to do is take advice from someone who left the party to become even more irrelevant.
    And anyone who has followed your disastrous political career knows just how hypocritical it is for you to state that a primary weakens the party.
    Unlike you, my view of primaries has not changed since 2010, unlike you, my principles are not subject to the next elected office I covet.

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