Posted by: James Atticus Bowden | March 16, 2009

Another Real Grassroots Person for Jeff Frederick

Dear Republican Party Leader,

My name is Carrie Wigal. My husband and I are delegates for Fluvanna
County (5th District) to this year’s GOP State Convention, and we were
delegates to last year’s State Convention. That was our first exposure to
politics at that level.

It was Governor Mike Huckabee running for President that motivated me to
get in the political game.

I jumped straight into “grassroots” campaigning before I was even really
active in our local GOP committee. (Things got a little crazy in our local
unit with the changing of the guard [unit chairman], so we got a late
start in campaigning for our GOP candidates.)

My personal grassroots efforts included leading a sign waving on Route 29
in Charlottesville and 2 outside the gates to Lake Monticello, a gated
community comprising half the population of Fluvanna County. We were on
the local news…I was on TV on two separate occasions, and I was
interviewed on NPR (National Public Radio). I was in the local newspaper a
couple of times, and I and a handful of others drove around town for weeks
with our candidates name and values written on our car/van windows &
windshields. I made homemade T-shirts and yard signs, distributing them
along with fliers and other campaign materials throughout our county. I
worked the polls in my local precinct, and I have hosted both private and
public events…all with the aim to promote the Republican candidate I
endorsed. This was all done independent of the Republican Party and my
local Republican unit. Oh yeah, I’m a blogger, too, and very involved in
various social online networks.

At last year’s state convention, I and my husband voted for Jeff Frederick
to be the new RPV chairman. Why? We needed a fresh face…someone who
could reach out to the young crowd, someone who stood strong for
Conservative values, someone familiar with modern technology, and someone
who understood the value of the Grassroots*. I also helped campaign for
Jeff at the convention. He won the election last year, fair and square and
by a large margin.

Almost two weeks ago, I discovered that folks were seeking to remove Jeff
as Chairman, and I was stunned. When I tried to find out why, I couldn’t
find anything concrete. Then I read an article somewhere that Bob
McDonnell had said he should be removed and that this was the desire of
the grassroots of the party. What? I didn’t want him to be removed. I
contacted a few of my “grassroots” friends in my district (who also voted
him in) and they didn’t want him removed either. I couldn’t and still
can’t understand why he was asked to resign.

Secondly, I knew that HuckPAC had endorsed McDonnell. After all that the
Huckabee supporters did to rally around Huckabee last year and Saxby
earlier this year…as a strong grassroots effort, I couldn’t believe how
out of touch McDonnell was to suggest it was the grassroots that wanted
Frederick out.

I implore you, unless you have some hard evidence of serious wrongdoing,
do not disenfranchise the grassroots of this party by throwing our choice
out. If you do have such evidence, it is in the best interest of the party
to present them publicly, since the intention to have him removed has
already been made public. If this is not aired out for all to see, then
there will be great animosity and further division within the party.

Our local committee went through some nasty power-play politics last year
with the overturning of our mass meeting at the 5th district. Thankfully
the SCC overruled that decision and the Fluvanna County voters were not
disenfranchised.  Last year we had 15 delegates go to the state
convention. This year…as a result of strong grassroots efforts, we have 51!

I am also very active in my community, and I assure you the average person
on Main Street is sick to death over party politics. They and myself
included want our elected officials to work on our behalf, for the
betterment of our communities and country, not for their own self
interests. We don’t want them playing politics anymore. If this removal is
purely a power play, then the people will see right through it, and that
will be the fall of the Republican Party.

Thank you for your service, and I pray you will do the right thing. Please
feel free to contact me anytime. Thank you for your time and

Carrie Wigal

*What I mean by “grassroots” is action from the bottom up. It is folks
like me who get out where the people are and “campaign” for whom we want
because *we* want to, not because someone higher up told us we needed to.



  1. James,

    I joined the RPV and York County Republican Committee in 2007 and dejectedly walked away from it in October 2008. Some may call me jaded, but the principles contained in the VA Republican Creed are more important than the politics that leads to winning elections.

    I supported Jeff Frederick’s campaign for RPV Chairman at the 1st District Convention and State Convention last year.

    I ran from the burning building that is the RPV house in October of last year, when GOP nominee Senator McCain was pushing the first bank bailout bill that became TARP. I was beside myself that none of the local or district party members were admonishing him for going to the Capitol to lend his support for the bailout. I still cringe that I had to turn my back on the election and not vote for the GOP nominee. The Obama presidency and Democratic Majority is the worst of all possible scenarios. That said, McCain was clearly the lesser of two evils in the campaign, but I simply refuse to accept evil. As you know, the lesser of two evils is still evil.

    I am likely too naive or idealistic for party politics. If we lessened the importance of parties in politics, we might have better elected representatives in government. Lately, it appears that Republicans are more concerned with winning office and beating democrats, than simply doing what is prudent and honorable towards achieving good governance at all levels of government.

    Until such time that honor, integrity, truthfulness, belief in Liberty, support of the Constitution, and principled action become the norm and expected character traits of the RPV leadership, I will be glad and proud to not participate.

    Here are some of my thoughts at one of the other conservative blogs.

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