UPDATE: Congressman Goodlatte’s office responded to this post: “Congressman Goodlatte requested this meeting with SVTPP in May, well before the June 10th primary, as part of his continued outreach to groups throughout the Sixth District. The headline of your post is quite misleading, making it look like the meeting was requested in response to Eric Cantor’s loss, which is not the case.”
The Shenandoah Valley Tea Party Patriots (SVTPP) reported in their June 29 newsletter that they were asked by Congressman Bob Goodlatte (R-6th) to meet to air their concerns, an hour-long event that took place on June 17, just seven days after Majority Leader Eric Cantor lost his reelection race. The tea party newsletter noted:
Congressman Goodlatte had requested the meeting in order to hear from the Leadership matters the Organization considered important, as well as thoughts and recommendations.
The tea party newsletter listed members in leadership who attended Goodlatte’s meeting. Among them were Georgia Long (Advisor to the Tea Party Director and a member of Republican Party of Virginia State Central Committee and 6th Republican Congressional District Committee), Ed Long (Tea Party Director), Alice Herbst (Advisor to the Tea Party Chairman), Bruce Richmond (Tea Party Chairman), Dale Hungerford (Tea Party Treasurer), Harold Tate (Tea Party Deputy Chairman), Rick Downs (Tea Party Deputy Chairman), Sandy Garst (Advisor to the Tea Party Director), and Sue Ward (Advisor to the Tea Party Chairman).
As requested by Congressman Goodlatte, these are the concerns the tea party presented as posted in their newsletter:
– Dale Hungerford noted that ” the SVTPP believes the Republican Party is letting the people down by not standing up and telling it like it is.”
– Rick Downs noted the SVPTT’s “… frustration with the lack of border security, the failure to not capture and deport illegal aliens, and Obama’s use of Executive Orders to deliberately bring in illegal aliens and provide them amnesty.”
– Harold Tate requested that Congressman Goodlatte “place high priority on reducing EPA activity by drastically reducing its funding.”
– Bruce Richmond addressed the IRS actions against conservative organizations and “… explained that the SVTPP’s application for 501(c)(4) status had required several years and 900 pages of required documentation. (Even though he was aware of the general IRS problem, Goodlatte was astounded at those particulars.)”
Sandy Garst summed up the meeting by saying ” ‘You [Goodlatte] are all we have in Congress,’ therefore we are depending on you to protect our rights and preserve this nation.” According to the newsletter, “Sandy Garst’s brief statement at the end had “significant, if not eye-opening shock, effect on Congressman Goodlatte. We know that because during the entire time he spoke at the end he faced and focused on Sandy.”
No word on whether Congressman Goodlatte has requested meetings with leadership of other tea party organizations in the 6th District. However, on June 26, The Hill reported that Goodlatte was backing away from the immigration bill he had been working on with Eric Cantor (see Goodlatte steps back from immigration proposal that focused on children).
Photo by Lynn R. Mitchell