Tag Archives: Shaun Kenney

Bearing Drift smoked out the competition with their cigar and coffee suite

By Lynn R. Mitchell

Homestead 2015 15If you take the Bearing Drift writers and add cigars and coffee, you get an atmosphere for political discussion and visiting with friends and political allies. Add to that an awesome suite with a porch overlooking The Homestead’s Casino, ice skating rink, and outdoor spa pool all surrounded by magical holiday lights, and you’ve got the makings for an memorable evening in Virginia’s Allegheny Mountains.

That’s quite some impressive sponsors. Thanks, Bearing Drift … job well done, and so appropriate.

Homestead 2015 17Aren’t they pretty? They were popular with suite guests, and a couple of them also smoked pipes. Hosts Brian Schoeneman, Shaun Kenney, and Matt Hall mixed it up with familiar faces who began crowding the porch as the evening went on.

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SCC members call on RPV to rebuke racist statements of Bull Elephant blogger

By Lynn R. Mitchell

Republican Party of Virginia leaders Mike Thomas, State Central Committee (SCC) first vice chairman, and Carole de Triquet, SCC member, have taken the lead in calling on the party’s ruling body to rebuke racist statements made by a conservative blogger.

Jeanine Martin at the Bull Elephant blog made the comments in a post and follow-up comments (for background see Jeanine Martin doesn’t think immigrants ‘Hmong’ here — updated with responses and more hate). Martin is also a member of the Loudoun GOP and has carried a proxy to SCC meetings.

Martin’s comments caused an outcry among party members who have worked to engage minority voters, not just at the polls, but also as candidates throughout the state.

Here is the letter sent to RPV Chairman John Whitbeck and State Central Committee by Thomas and de Triquet:

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Garren Shipley has left as RPV communications director

Garren Shipley

Garren Shipley, Jeff Schapiro (RTD)

By Lynn R. Mitchell

Grace. That’s the way to describe Garren Shipley’s untimely departure from the Republican Party of Virginia. Communications Director extraordinaire, Garren has been a helpful and informational member of RPV throughout the years, coming on board while I was still on state central committee, and remaining for almost three years after I left. He was organized and prompt with media “technical advisories” concerning RPV events, always timely in notifying of upcoming media opportunities and helpful in providing updates and follow-up leading to the event.

Oh — and he always answered my emails. Always.  Anyone who has had trouble communicating with communications people understands what I’m saying.

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Crisis at RPV: Whitbeck puts staff on chopping block

Republican elephantBy Lynn R. Mitchell

The halls at the Republican Party of Virginia headquarters in Richmond will be emptier by the end of next week.

RPV Executive Director Shaun Kenney, gone.

RPV Communications Director Garren Shipley, gone.

No RPV political director. No RPV fund raiser.

Republican 5th Congressional District Chairman Jon Berkley, gone (see RPV in Crisis: Due process and rule of law ignored in removal of 5th CD Chair Jon Berkley).

All under the direction of the new “I’ve-been-in-office-four-weeks” RPV State Chairman John Whitbeck aka “the unifier” who said he wanted to bring the factions together.

You could call it the St. Valentine’s Day massacre.

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Better Fellows sought despite Howell’s resistance

Daniel Cortez 2By Daniel P. Cortez

In spite of being politically jaded, I recently visited the General Assembly. Yes, the extreme partisanship and elitism of some of Virginia’s legislators was evident. But I found hope in our young people’s involvement through the Governor’s Fellows Program. Even as whispers were rampant about Stafford’s 71-year-old Delegate William J. Howell.

When not in session, politicos scurried in and out of meetings with special interest groups and citizens. Clearly the Cantor catastrophe had conservatives up for election somewhat edgy. Many attempt to soften their image or cotton up to tea party extremists in hopes of not being primaried. One even brought in his dog.

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An independent perspective on Brat-Cantor race

Daniel Cortez 2By Daniel Cortez

The election of tea party backed candidate Dave Brat in the 7th District primary has done little to excite independent minority voters in Virginia. Many still trying to decide which party would work to support the diversity of political opinion were frankly pushed away by the insensitive racial comments by Brat on minorities and Dream Act legislation during the campaign.

Comments do not need to be overt to have devastating consequences for a Virginia Republican party still trying to reorganize and responsibly deal with race. It continues to cost them elections.

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