Willie Deutsch.com

Religion and Politics from a Young Christian in Northern Virginia

Stimpson: Howell is My Mentor Who I Call Regularly for Advice

March 16th, 2013

A month ago I posted a mailer of Stimpson and Howell endorsing Allen in the senate primary, and asked how she could claim to be Anti-Establishment.  Her supporters responded by strongly telling me I was wrong, and that her connection with Howell wasn’t that strong.  Earlier this month I posted a joint mailer Stimpson and Howell sent when there was no upcoming election in which they praised each other, and in that post I pointed out the incredible support Howell gave to Stimpson’s Supervisor race.  Stimpson’s supporters argued even stronger that I was taking things out of context, and that Stimpson is an independent who will stand up to Bill Howell when she is Lieutenant Governor.

Now I present to you Susan Stimpson in her own words.

Before I progress, I want to point something out.  I do not object to having a Lieutenant Governor who has a good working relationship with Bill Howell.  The next Lieutenant Governor better have that.  What I object to is 1.) someone who is disingenuous about her relationship with the Speaker and 2.) someone who is unable or unwilling to stand up to him when elected.  Tragically Susan is both of these.

The following is Susan Stimpson describing Bill Howell’s influence on her.  It is from a fundraising event in the fall of 2011.  (You can view the entire speech here.)

Susan Stimpson is a woman who remember’s where she came from, and she knows and readily admits that she is where she is because of Bill Howell’s support and mentorship.  He is also someone she readily calls for advice.  When you watch the full speech, it is clear that Bill Howell is the person who has had the greatest influence on her of anyone in Stafford County.

If Stimpson wants to argue that she will stand up to Bill Howell when elected, then clearly she has forgotten “where she came from,” something she claimed only a year and a half ago she doesn’t do.

To me Stimpson’s recent Anti-Howell rhetoric seems like political opportunism and disloyalty not any sort of principled stand.  Bill Howell hasn’t changed much in the last year and a half.  What is Stimpson going to do when she get’s to Richmond? Is she going to call Howell for advice if we elect her?  Do you really believe that someone Stimpson considers her mentor, owes her seat to, and relies on for advice is someone she can say no to when push comes to shove?

Some things are just a bit too hard to believe…

Either she isn’t who she claims to be, lied a year and a half ago about Howell, or had quite the opportunistic political conversion.

UPDATE: Stimpson supporters are claiming this article doesn’t matter since a rift developed between Stimspon and Howell in early 2012.  It was clearly after the spring 2012 photo shoot which means the supposed rift took place right before she announced for LG in the summer of 2012.  This “rift” sounds like an opportunistic political conversion reminiscent of Romney’s pre-election position changes.  That response sure doesn’t help me trust Stimpson.

Stimpson Campaign: Attacking Those Who Question Their Narrative

February 18th, 2013

Last night I posted an article questioning Susan Stimpson’s anti-establishment credentials.  I’ve been highly critical of both Susan Stimpson, and Pete Snyder on my facebook profile as I question whether they really are what they claim to be.  To Pete Snyder’s credit, when I was at the Sterling forum, he came to me and said, “I’ve seen your posts about me on facebook.  Thanks for keeping me honest.”  We had a good time interacting throughout that evening.  Seeing a candidate not take criticism personally, was refreshing.

Stimpson’s response to criticism is quite the opposite.  While one of her supporters was willing to respond good naturedly, her Campaign Director, Scott Hirons, believed it was better to attack my maturity and motivation, than engage in a discussion and respond to the questions.  I’d love to have begun a discussion on whether Stimpson was the anti-establishment candidate, and if I’m wrong I’d love to see the proof.  Instead the campaign has sent a clear message, we don’t set the record straight, we just impugn our critics.  I’d love to see how that strategy works in the general election.

This thin skinned response by the campaign is reminiscent of the incredibly condescending way in which she spoke at the candidate forum in Sterling last week.  She spoke as if the audience agreed with her that she was the one who got it, while everyone else was flawed.  She also seemed to start every response to a question with a jab at whoever had just spoken.

Maybe in this post Scott Hirons, Stimpson’s Campaign Director, wasn’t speaking for the campaign, but for himself.  This is understandable, because maybe the post hit a little close to home for him.  You see, his Linkedin account states the following…

Yes, Bill Howell is the Speaker of the House…  Quite possibly he was upset, I would write something that seemed to go after his former boss.

This however, only further highlights the Stimpson/Howell connection, that Stimpson supporters try to deny.  Stimpson owes her seat to Howell, works hand in hand with him, and his former Director of Communications directs her campaign, but her supporters would have you believe Lingamfelter is really the one in bed with Bill Howell.  Some connections are just a bit too hard to deny.

Either Stimpson’s campaign is incredibly thin skinned, or it has an undisciplined campaign manager who highlights the Stimpson/Howell connection.  Either one is not good news for the Stimpson campaign moving forward.  Let’s see what results from these approaches as the nomination process continues, or when the papers start questioning her should she win the nomination.

Susan Stimpson: Anti-Establishment Since…?

February 18th, 2013

Some pictures are worth a thousand words…

Susan Stimpson has been running for Lieutenant Governor as the anti-establishment candidate with the principled record.  She regularly paints the rest of the field either as “establishment” or as “lacking a record.”  In a recent email from a campaign surrogate, she was described as someone the establishment is afraid of and out to get.  This rhetoric has been very persuasive, and much of the Ron Paul movement in the state joined her campaign almost as soon as she announced her candidacy.

As someone who has been involved in many anti-establishment efforts over the last five years in Virginia, I was astonished that the lead anti-establishment candidate in the race was someone I had never heard of.  I started asking some questions. If she is the anti-establishment candidate, when has she stood strong under fire while fighting for what she believes?  Where has she been taking on the establishment as they have consolidated power, or ignored our principles?  Also, whom are the anti-establishment candidates she has supported in tight and difficult races?

What I keep finding is that, prior to deciding to run for statewide office, Susan Stimpson showed few of the qualities one would expect of an anti-establishment candidate.  This is particularly true in regards to whom she has chosen to support or oppose within the Republican Party.

How does an anti-establishment person campaign throughout 2012 for George Allen, side-by-side with Bill Howell? Allen and Howell are two of the people that embody the VA political establishment!  Which one of Stimpson’s strong supporters would dream of supporting Allen, let alone doing it alongside Howell?

Now, maybe supporting Allen was a fluke in an otherwise impeccable anti-establishment record.  However, besides supporting Bolling and Cuccinelli, which practically everyone did, the only other party issue where I can find Stimpson on record is publicly supporting the removal of Jeff Frederick as party chairman in 2009.  Electing Jeff Frederick as party chairman was a major victory of the grassroots over the establishment.  Defending him from the instantaneous assault by the establishment was something the grassroots worked hard to do.  The fact that Stimpson publicly stood with the establishment as they ousted Frederick continues to fly in the face of what an anti-establishment activist would do.

While I can’t find public statements from Stimpson at the time, I have also heard from people involved in the 2008 U.S. Senate nomination contest that Stimpson described Bob Marshall as a “loon” who “wasn’t her brand of politics.”

This is Stimpson’s track record of whom she chooses to support or oppose within the party over the last five years.  While none of these positions need to be a  litmus test in and of themselves, this is not the track record of an anti-establishment candidate.  Instead it reflects the values of someone who supports the safe picks and does what is necessary to curry favor with party leaders.

Stimpson’s brief record has enabled Stimpson to transform herself from someone who regularly supported the establishment into the anti-establishment candidate the Ron Paul movement sees her as.

Ron Paulers and others who are new to the anti-establishment fight in Virginia should listen to Jeff Frederick, someone who is unquestionably anti-establishment and who has worked with Stimpson and lives in close proximity to her.

 I got to know Susan Stimpson (who is running for LG) during my time as RPV Chairman and in the period prior when I was seeking that job. I considered her a friend. Yet, she was a strong ally of Bill Howell (she owes her current elective office to his blessing in her seeking it). When she announced her candidacy for LG and in the subsequent time since, her rhetoric has reflected the exact opposite of the person I knew. Of course, she sounds great now (convenient as she pursues statewide office), but my experience is that she is a top-down establishment Republican who is more interested in position and power rather than her recent claims to be about people and principle. It is only because her public record is so brief that she has been so effective at leading others to believe she’s something she is not.

Then they should ask themselves, if Susan Stimpson is an anti-establishment warrior, when did she become that? Did she decide to stand for principles against power when it could cost her, or when it was politically expedient?

Willie Deutsch.com

Religion and Politics from a Young Christian in Northern Virginia