Last year, I wrote an article regarding a meeting of the Frederick County Republican Committee. Although I’ve been involved in politics for the last 22 years, I’ve never witnessed a gathering as blatantly corrupt as what I saw from the FCRC on the evening of August 30th. The temporary chair, improperly elected, ignored the complaints arising from the expulsion of several of their members, rammed through the introduction of new members without either discussion or a proper vote, and then immediately declared the meeting adjourned.
Given this unchecked abuse of power by the Frederick County GOP, what should honest, limited government folks in Frederick County do? Should they remain with the local Republican Party? I’m sure some have. But others have gone elsewhere. For example, when I visited the Frederick County Libertarians several months ago, I found one former member of the Frederick Republicans in attendance.
Now, as an additional option, another group has emerged which calls itself the Conservative Caucus. Created by Dutch Jennings, the former treasurer of the Frederick County Republican Party, the group held their first organizational meeting on March 22nd. But who are they and what do they stand for? To answer that question, the group sent out a press release about a week ago.
D.P. “Dutch” Jennings, Chairman of the Conservative Caucus, has announced the forming of a new group in Frederick County. The Conservative Caucus met for its organizational meeting last Saturday the 22nd, and a large room of guests were inducted as new members.
A “caucus” is most frequently a segment, or a subset, of an organized political party. However, the Conservative Caucus is not currently associated with a political party; but may consider a future filing with the Commonwealth of Virginia as a more formally organized group. At this time it is an independent community association focused only on local issues with primarily economic impacts.
According to the Conservative Caucus Mission Statement, they are an organization for Frederick County, VA conservatives who wish to promote fiscal responsibility, smaller government, lower taxes, adherence to the Constitution and individual liberty.
They are forming to give a voice to Frederick County voters and taxpayers who wish to know more about and participate in decisions concerning subjects impacting the political and financial well-being of the county. This provides the opportunity for more citizen participation, needed transparency and positive results.
A focus will be working to identify areas deserving public attention such as local elections, the financial position of Frederick County and the cost of new projects. Some goals are to further inform the community on local public projects in terms of reasonable need, not just want; process and methods of accomplishment; cost effectiveness and impact on county residents. This will be accomplished by a number of initiatives that will be announced later in the year.
According to Jennings, “We look forward to like-minded county residents joining our efforts. Citizens desiring to work in a friendly, cooperative environment to make Frederick County a more honest and open place to live and work are invited to contact the Conservative Caucus via our website cc-fcva.com.”
To join, a citizen must be proposed by a member and be voted in by the Steering Committee. The Caucus’s policy is to keep member information confidential.
So, there you have it. Although the Frederick County GOP has driven away a portion of their membership with their shady behavior, some of these folks have come together in this nonpartisan group to further their political objectives, especially at the local level.