John Whitbeck, the newly elected head of the RPV, has made an unprecedented move “endorsing” and that’s what it is regardless of the language used in his recent statement of support for John Guevara for Supervisor of the Sully District in Fairfax County.
In this, the first genuine move by Whitbeck towards outreach to the minority community for conservatives, he states, “Growing the Republican Party is essential to our winning elections in Northern Virginia. John Guevara is exactly the kind of Republican we need to accomplish just that. His military and private sector experience in project management makes him uniquely qualified to serve on the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors.”
Whitbeck’s support of Guevara, a manager for a large telecommunications provider and 15-year Army veteran, is indicative of who indeed would be best to demonstrate badly needed outreach for the Republican Party in Northern Virginia that eludes conservatives in major races.
Guevara in many respects is a genuine positive community activist. He is vice president of the Board for the Western Fairfax Christian Ministries, a nonprofit charitable organization dedicated to providing emergency food and financial assistance. He’s been a youth sports coach, a Cub Scout Den Leader and a Sunday school teacher. As a homeowner’s association president and political committee member, he is in the grass roots of what concerns citizens.
While repeated queries have gone in to the Schoeneman campaign regarding his verifiable charitable involvements, his campaign has refused to validate contributions other than stating he would donate $20 thousand to various charities if elected. So what he’s saying is the only way he will be verifiably charitable to those in need is to get elected. Sounds like typical lawyer-like media spin to me. Wouldn’t the honorable thing to do is donate the money now if Schoeneman is genuine about his generosity to the underprivileged?
Well-versed independent voters know Schoeneman as a loyal back bench Northern Virginia Republican attack dog. He’s overly opinionated, trying to get the last word in on anyone who disagrees with his conservative take. He’s not as hard-hearted as, say, Speaker Bill Howell when it comes to outreach and immigration but he can’t be viewed as championing change.
He lawyers up being the co-owner of Virginia Line Media LLC, a new media company that owns and operates BearingDrift.com. Inexplicably, the minority or independent article rarely sees the light of day there, and Schoeneman could help change that unwelcome perception. It’s the eager forced smile and talking just enough talk to attempt to get elected that makes me want to watch my wallet around him. He is clearly a loving father and husband but does he truly try to have a frequent sincere open dialogue with the minority community to increase outreach? I’d love to say yes at some point.
Guevara may be correct when he states, “We need a new face, a person who has management, business, and people skills to tackle these local issues that affect our families.”
Difficult for die-hard operatives to forget Schoeneman’s involvement in the “missing vote” dilemma during the last AG’s race and how he was sheepish and embarrassed on the Rachel Maddow show attempting to validate the “perfect storm” of events that happened on his watch as senior member of the Fairfax electoral board. It was not the kind of press any candidate, operative, or region needed. For an allegedly accomplished Merchant Marine lawyer and ambitious future candidate to seek visibility on one of media’s worst-rated liberal programs spoke volumes about his ego.
Anthony Bedell, former Chairman of Fairfax County Republican Committee, has endorsed Guevara, correctly acknowledging the changing racial dynamics of that area. He stated, “Republicans more than ever need to nominate candidates who can reach a wide array and diverse group of voters if we have any chance to win. Nominating John Guevara in Sully meets this standard.”
The fire house primary is scheduled for April 25th, 10-3 p.m., at Westfield High School located at 4700 Stonecroft Blvd. Chantilly, VA.
Yes, clearly Schoeneman does have some similar accomplishments as Guevara, but as an independent observer it’s clear who can do Republicans most good. That’s Guevara.
Sadly, racial politics still do come into play in conservative circles and the question remains whether Whitbeck can change the homogenous nature of the Virginia Republican Party when it comes to racial inclusion and attraction. Only time will tell.
Daniel Cortez, a distinguished Vietnam veteran and award winning writer/broadcaster, is active in veterans and political affairs with an independent voter perspective. He can be reached at email@example.com
Foolish Peter is the RPV or some of their hard hearted candidates to continue to push away the badly needed minority votes they need to take back the White House and the State House. Sadly not every candidate is as worthy as a Barbara Comstock or a George Allen.
I agree that Republicans need to do more to reach out to minority communities, but I think your assessment of Brian as hard-hearted is unfair. You can disagree with candidates and policies without attacking their character. I’m not disputing that John is a good candidate or that his heart is in the right place, I just happen to think that Brian is a better candidate. Brian brings a depth of policy experience to the table and has demonstrated a clear knowledge of issues important to Fairfax County. He has a lot of support in the community and from local leaders like Congresswoman Barbara Comstock and Supervisor Pat Herrity. Sully constituents and Fairfax County citizens overall could benefit from his level of expertise on these issues. There’s no place for “racial politics” in this election, or in any election. To suggest that any of our candidates are motivated by some sort of racial hostility is to make a substance-less ad hominem attack that simply isn’t true and degrades the discourse about the issues we all care about. Brian will be just as committed to reaching out to voters and expanding the Republican tent. We can agree to disagree about our choice in candidates, but I hope we can do it respectfully and come together behind our nominee after April 25.
P.S. I think your characterization of Speaker Howell is also unfair. Bill and his wife Cessie are some of the nicest people I know. You can disagree with his views on Medicaid expansion or on immigration issues without maligning him. His heart is in the right place and he cares about Virginians of all stripes. I have talked to hundreds of voters in his district and the most common response I get from folks is one of personal admiration. He is there for his constituents and is still one of them. Power hasn’t changed him one bit.
Peter I have lived in Stafford County for 30 plus years and sadly Howell’s racial insensitivity is well known in the minority community. The tragic emasculation of Howell’s character by the Washington Post here at http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/massive-resistance-again-in-virginia/2015/02/07/9c895eaa-ad7e-11e4-ad71-7b9eba0f87d6_story.html was hard to read and sadly difficult to contest. Howell may also win his race also but his effectiveness and inability to lead was demonstrated by the Republican annihilation of the last election. I was at the inauguration ceremonies and it was humbling to all conservatives or independents like me present what his lack of outreach caused. This also will be part of Howell’s tragic legacy. Let’s just respectfully agree to disagree on Howell as well.
Peter all opinions should be respected and I hope all will agree and laud Chairman Whitbeck’s . Thank you for acknowledging the need for more outreach. Whitbeck’s action is a step in the right direction.