Klinge Calls For Frederick’s Resignation

Yesterday a good number of people received an email from J. Kenneth Klinge calling for RPV Chairman Jeff Frederick to resign in face of the results of this month’s elections.  Klinge gives his credentials in the email, but one should also note that in addition to supporting Wolf, Drake and Fimian in this year’s house elections, Klinge also contributed $250 to Democratic Virginia Senate Majority Leader Richard Saslaw.

UPDATE: Norm Leahy gives his take:

Virginia Republicans have, since 2001 but with a vengeance since 2004, gone out of their way to undermine their own cause. Yes, things have gotten better for them, at the margins at least, with the departure of people like John Chichester. But they remain ill-served with a leadership that has no agenda, with members who, generally, tend to wait until January to focus on the road ahead and an overall message that is neither coherent nor energizing (quick…what does the GOP hope to accomplish in the next session? One priority…just one…will do).

UPDATE 2: Klinge was Executive Director of the Republican Party of Virginia from 1973-1974 under Richard D. Obenshain.

Klinge’s letter is after the break.

Dear Fellow Republican,

While nationally our Republican Party experienced disappointing losses, the results from Virginia were even worse.

Virginia lost more Republican seats in Congress than any other state in the United States of America. We lost two Congressional incumbents, a GOP held open Congressional seat, and a GOP held US Senate seat.

Virginia voted for a Democrat for President for the first time since 1964.

Why were the results here in Virginia worse than any other state?

I believe the answer is the misguided efforts of RPV Chairman Frederick.

When Frederick was running for RPV Chair, he said “In the end, effort is commendable, BUT THE RESULTS ARE ALL THAT COUNT.”

This year, Frederick led the Party to the worst loss for Virginia Republicans in our modern history.

Frederick’s immaturity and lack of judgment hurt our Party.

Instead of providing the support our candidates for President and Vice-President needed, Frederick clashed with them. In a shocking lack of judgment, Frederick openly criticized the McCain-Palin Campaign in an article in the Washington Times just days before the election. The lack of cooperation between the McCain-Palin Campaign and RPV was widely reported in many newspapers. How can Frederick claim he was working to deliver Virginia for the McCain-Palin ticket while simultaneously attacking the McCain-Palin Campaign in the newspapers?

Frederick was REPUDIATED by Attorney General Bob McDonnell and Senator John McCain for equating Barack Obama with Osama Bin Laden.

Frederick never even met with Virginia’s Republican Congressional Delegation!

Frederick can’t claim he tried to help our Congressional candidates when he wouldn’t even take the time to sit down with them. During his time as Chairman, Frederick never met with Virginia’s Congressional delegation. Frederick’s lack of interest in helping our Congressional candidates led to the loss of two Republican incumbents Congressman in Thelma Drake and Virgil Goode and the loss of Tom Davis’ open seat.

Frederick failed to raise the money needed to win.

Jeff Frederick also claimed that he would be able to boost RPV’s fundraising efforts, but he has failed. When you subtract direct transfers to RPV from the McCain-Palin Campaign, the RNC, and other state parties, RPV’s fundraising was a disappointing failure. From June 1 through Oct 15, RPV only raised $373,329. Amazingly, that’s $185,312 less than the comparable period in 2004 – the last presidential election cycle – when Virginia was not a targeted battleground state and we had no statewide campaign.

Under Frederick, RPV spent $366,331 on staff, fundraising expenses and overhead (remember they only raised $373,329!) and left almost nothing for direct campaign support. Staff and fundraising expenses under Frederick have increased over the same period in 2004 – even as RPV raised less money.

Incredibly, Frederick sent out a memo on Oct. 28 claiming he raised $4 million for campaign efforts this year – when the truth is he had no role in raising almost all of these funds. RPV was only able to pay for signs and mailers because of transfers and donations from the Republican National Committee, the McCain-Palin Campaign, and other state parties. I point this important fact out because Frederick himself attacked the past RPV leadership for counting these transfers as money “raised” in earlier campaign cycles.

Where was Frederick during the campaign?

In the heat of the most important election in our lifetime, Frederick took ten days off in September to go on a junket to Israel. It’s true. While our candidates were in the fight of their lives, while Virginia was a presidential battleground state, Frederick was touring Israel with Democrat Jim Moran and other politicians. They ate at fine restaurants and stayed at luxury hotels during their week-long all expenses paid vacation.

Frederick failed to provide the support our candidates needed and was unable to raise the money our Party required, contributing to the Republican rout we witnessed on Election Day, November 4, 2008.

I know a bad chairman when I see one.

I’ve been active in the Republican Party of Virginia since 1964. I served as executive director of our state party in 1973-1974 (During Watergate). I also ran Governor Reagan’s campaign for the Republican nomination for President in Virginia in 1976, and for five (5) States in the South during his successful campaign for President in 1980.

For forty-four years, I have worked to help elect Republican candidates on all levels. I started as a precinct captain in Arlington County and went on to advise many candidates, including George Allen for Governor (1993) and United States Senate (2000), Jim Gilmore for Governor (1997), Tom Davis (1991-2006), and Rob Wittman for Congress (2007 Special Election), and many candidates in local and legislative races. Over the years, I have learned what Republicans need to do to put principled conservatives into office.

I must say that if you look at the results, Frederick ranks as the worst state chairman in the history of the Republican Party of Virginia!

Next year is a critical election year for Virginia because, not only are we electing a Governor, LT. Governor, and Attorney General, but we also must maintain our majority in the House of Delegates to keep the Democrats from further hurting Republicans during redistricting. We must also begin on the road back to a majority in the State Senate of Virginia. JEFF FREDERICK IS INCAPABLE OF PROVIDING THE LEADERSHIP THAT THE REPUBLICAN PARTY NEEDS IN ORDER TO ACCOMPLISH THESE GOALS IN 2009.

If we are to rebuild, Frederick must resign.

If we are going to begin rebuilding and have a successful 2009, then the first step is for Jeff Frederick to resign as Chairman of the Republican Party of Virginia. If Frederick does not resign, then I’m asking you to join me in DEMANDING that the members of the Republican Party State Central Committee remove Jeff Frederick from the office of Chairman of the Party. The State Central Committee has the authority and DUTY to remove a chairman from office when the chairman cannot handle the job. I believe it is their responsibility to do so right now. If they can’t or won’t do their duty, it is time to make changes in the membership of that committee also.

Kenneth Kling
J. Kenneth Klinge

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  • Richmond Area Republican

    Well said Mr. Klinge! Frederick injected himself into the story during the election. He embarrassed the Party, and the McCain campaign. He should resign now so we can move forward with an adult as Party Chairman.

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  • TJ

    Looks like you guys at Bearing Drift missed the ball again, Hampton RoadsGOP had this up before this even crossed your radar screen. Once again, thanks for the late heads up.


  • MB

    Stay, Jeff, stay!

  • To reprise the response to Mr. Klinge’s letter that I posted on the Hampton Roads GOP website … where it was posted, for some reason:

    It’s clear the Empire is striking back. The Old Guard is still stunned at their defeat in May when the Party was turned back over to the grassroots. But instead of pulling together behind Jeff Frederick, they are pulling out the long knives behind Mr. Klinge.

    There are so many ridiculous assertions to which to respond in this post that it takes one’s breath away. Still, the most breathtaking aspect of Mr. Klinge’s letter is its combination of sheer audacity and naivete, especially for one who has been in Republican politics for 44 years. Many of his arguments are so silly on their face that I’m sure Mr. Klinge doesn’t believe them. He’s simply throwing all the mud he can against Jeff, hoping that something will stick.

    But as a thought-starter, let me get a couple of things straight. The same crowd that has lost two straight governorships and one highly winnable Senate seat, and watched Northern Virginia turn into a sea of blue while Jeff was winning in a Democrat-leaning seat, now blames the 2008 debacle on a guy who has been in place for six months?

    And — pardon me as I suppress a laugh — blames the epic loss on:

    -The fact that Jeff didn’t convene a meeting
    -The fact that Jeff spent a week in israel
    -The fact that Jeff one time expressed his frustration with the McCain campaign, not the candidate, for failing to listen to a candidate who knows how to win on conservative principles in a blue district in Northern Virginia
    -The fact that John McCain gracelessly threw Jeff under the bus without so much as a phone call or heads-up for a careless joke meant to fire up supporters
    -The fact that Jeff wasn’t able to raise a few hundred thousand more dollars, when the Republicans were up against a candidate who raised more than $600 million and shoveled buckets of it at Virginia.

    Mr. Klinge, with all due respect for your age and years of service, grow up. You know full well that Jeff arrived to find a party whose coffers, organization and even offices had been decimated by your friends in the Old Guard. Understaffed and already outspent and outgunned by the opposition, he had to clean up the mess even as he was doing his utmost to support the McCain, Gilmore and congressional campaigns.

    You know full well that the statewide and congressional losses were due to more money, to better candidates in some cases, and to shifting demographics — the rise of new groups the party had done nothing to reach. And now you want to fix the last problem by tossing out our first Hispanic … and youngest-ever .. chairman? Smart.

    You know full well that it takes time to build a fundraising base … and that it is especially hard when you’re competing with national, statewide and local campaigns, when a major portion of the base is disillusioned with the candidates, and, let’s not forget, when significant factions of the former leadership of the party are sitting on their hands and trashing the current leadership. When did you offer to host a fundraiser for Jeff and the RPV? That’s what I thought.

    Enough is enough. It’s time to quit the sniping at Jeff Frederick and help him turn our fire on the Democrats. As they say … help lead … follow … or get the #@$%&*(!!!! out of the way.

  • HamptonRoadsGOP is a fine site, TJ; I’m glad their readers had a chance to see the letter.

    However, while that letter may have been posted earlier there, I know most of our readers didn’t get a chance to see it yet, so we posted it here too.

    I would hardly call that “missing the ball”.

    What is a miss, though, is that your link doesn’t work.

  • DCH

    With all due respect, Mr. Klinge appears to be part of the problem. I would prefer not to fight this particular battle in the blogsphere, but since we are here, I will say that the good old boy network in the GOP has been getting us into this mess for a very long time. Mr. Klinge is a lobbyist with personal knowledge of the intricacies of that good old boy network. He and others were threatened when the pesky Republican voters spoke up and trusted Jeff Frederick with the leadership of our party this summer. Now, they are using any excuse they can to try to oust him and install one of their own – without having to consult grassroots delegates.

    The fact is that Del. Frederick didn’t get us into this mess and it is entirely unreasonable to expect him to have rectified all the problems caused by the good old boy network in a mere six months. If anyone should be resigning, it should be certain congressional district chairs who have enjoyed titles and votes but done little or nothing to build our party over the last eight years – not our newly elected chairman. But the bottom line is that Obama’s victory should inspire us to pull together & work both harder and smarter on behalf of our team this November.

    I would respectfully ask Mr. Klinge and others to stop the sniping and get to work. Collect signatures for the candidate(s) of your choice. Get ready to run a fair nominating process. Raise funds for the party to rebuild. Prepare and carry out initiatives to improve our voter ID. There is plenty to do that doesn’t involve pointing fingers at our chairman.

    Finally, “it is time for some continuity in leadership for our party.” That’s what the good old boy network was saying when one of their own (and a very nice one at that) was running for chairman this summer. The GOP delegates didn’t trust their assessment of WHO should provide that continuity, but on this point the good old boy network was quite correct. Perhaps they should listen to their own advice. We can’t build a party when we are changing top leadership acrimoniously every year or so. Jeff still has the support of the grassroots. He has a lot to do and he needs at least another year and a half to begin rebuilding our party. Let’s help him to that end.

  • DCH

    oh, and besides his contribution to Dick Saslaw (Senate leader of the DEMOCRATIC party), Klinge has also contributed to Mark Sickles and Janet Howell, also Democrat electeds.

    While he has every right to donate to whoever he likes, and, as a lobbyist, I’m sure has reason to include Democrats in his donor list, I’m not so sure that someone with such divided loyalties should be considered an authority on who is in the best position to lead the VA GOP. Nor is he in any position to cast blame on our Republican chairman. Jeff Frederick has not donated to help the election efforts of ANY member of the opposition party – I checked.


  • TJ

    The link does work. There must have been a temporary server error. However, I do want to point out that at least you responded and characterized HR GOP with more class than the classless Brian Kirwin. You will have to accept my apology, though, because I know that really isn’t saying much.

  • Tim Johnson, what a great reflection you give of yourself. Congratulations! Someone noticed you!

    One day, you may realize we’re all on the same team.

  • FrenchyTheSailor


    Don’t believe Brian. He’s on his own team, spreading discontent to the GOP masses. I think he’s a ringer for Obama. 🙂

    (Brian, I’d be on your team, but like you, I don’t play well with others.)

  • As a Ronald Reagan Republican I could not agree more with Mr. Kling. The Virginia Republican Party has been hijacked by the extreme right. That’s why we keep losing elections. Mark Early, Jerry Kilgore, Jim Gilmore all were too extreme for Virginia and we are about to do it again when we nominat McDonald for Governor. Yes, like the others he will go down in flames next November. It seems the party would rather have a candidate that is 100% pure right and lose than win an election.

    No only do we need to get rid of Frederick we need to dump Morton Blackwell and most of the right wing nuts on the state central committee. Wake up Virginia Republicans. You are turning the Commonwealth over to the Democrats!

  • How is Bob McDonnell more extreme than Ronald Reagan?

  • BullElephant

    What on earth do people like “Alexandria Pete” mean when they say the GOP has been taken over by extremists and “right wing nuts”?!?

    Frederick and others like him often get characterized as being on the extreme right wing. Can anyone cite to me a policy view of his that would support such a characterization?

  • The VA GOP keeps losing because it is full of RINOs that think by actiung like Democrats they can pander their way into winning election.

    Here’s a clue to the clueless – elect Republicans that will DO WHAT THEY PROMISE instead of acting like Democrats.

  • novamiddleman

    Reading these comments I give up

    Have fun becoming a permanent minority status party

    McDonnel isn’t a guarnateed win and at this rate I wouldn’t be suprised if he ends up losing

  • TJ


    People in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones. last time I checked you and I are not on the same team, I am not a RINO.

  • Klinge is a lobbyist?
    A lobbyist that speads money to both sides of the aisle….

    I think that pretty much sums up his credibility…. he misses Hager who worked in the Warner Administration…. no wonder he’s all ruffled up over Frederick…

    take a hike buddy…. go have a drink with Chichester and Potts.

  • TJ, I’d never accuse you of having stones.

    Continue attacking other Republicans. It made for a highly successful 2008, didn’t it?

  • TJ


    2008 went down the tubes because we had a RINO at the top of the ticket, when we get away from conservative principals we lose, and lose bad. Kind of reminds me of 2007 and Marty Williams which you know all about.

  • Makes you wonder how that “RINO” John McCain won so many Republican primaries, doesn’t it TJ?

  • Hey, JR! How’dya like these apples. I’m the RINO now and you’re the arch-conservative.

    Isn’t this fun?

    Boy these experts certainly know blogging.

  • TJ, you really are a whiner! I’ve never seen any blogger throw such a hissy fit over some perceived failure to give credit.

    And this RINO BS is what started the decline of the GOP in Virginia. Keep it up until you have a small group of like-minded hyper partisans in a permanent minority.

  • Loudoun, the “RINO BS” is what started the decline of the GOP. Had the GOP chosen candidates that would run and act like Republicans instead of Democrats the GOP blood bath could have been avoided.

  • Reid, like Jim Gilmore?

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  • Lynn Fairchild Martin


    Do you guys not realize that we’re all supposed to be on the same side in this? We are the Republican Party of Virginia. There are no factions, or at least there shouldn’t be. Did this election not show us that we need to get our act together and stand up as a united, solid group? Sniping like this is exactly what will lose us even more elections. If the Democrats were reading these posts (and I’m sure they are), they’d be laughing their backsides off at our killing ourselves.
    As a true and devoted Republican from Lynchburg stated, we need to be turning the guns outward, not inward at ourselves. (Thanks, Doug!) How can we inspire voters to know that the Republicans in office and up to be elected are truly the right candidates when we have all of these childish games going on all over the state? We need to stop this backbiting and join together to make certain that we get this state back.
    This is an embarrassment to us all if this keeps up; and if it does, we have no chance of getting our state back. Please to all of you guys, grow up for the state’s benefit. These games will get into the newspapers and other reporting venues, and how is that going to make the Republican Party of Virginia look then? For the benefit of all of us, please, we need to quit the sniping and join together. That’s the only way that we can make this next year, and even four years, succeed.

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  • Dan Lyons

    Frederick wasn’t to blame for all of the lost elections. Bush is, and so is the departure that the party has taken from Fiscal Conservatism and the sensible foreign policy advocated by Taft, Coolidge and Goldwater. I blame Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rove, Chertoff. Hutchison, Woo, and the rest of the Globalist scum that have hijacked not only the GOP, but the nation as a whole.

    That said, the same Globalist scum have just been re-elected on a national scale. I try not to hate the idiots that voted for Globalist scum this time around for their ignorance, but I digress. Let’s run the Neo-Cons, who are neither really Conservatives OR have ideas that are new, out and bring back the old Right. It should be apparent more so now than ever, that a return to classical Conservatism is the only thing that’s going to stop the GOP’s base – the Real Conservatives – and get them stop voting for Libertarians or Constitution Party candidates.

    You want the GOP to be back on top? I do too, but the party really needs to stop trying to be all things to all people, and stop fighting like a kid resisting a shot in the butt whenever people start advocating a sensible monetary policy or a scaling back of the police state.

    It’s completely asinine to blame the guy who WAS JUST ELECTED THIS SUMMER for the crushing defeat dealt out this November, when the real blame lies squarely on the people who have annihilated the Republican brand name.

    It’s up to people like us to determine whether ‘GOP’ will stand for ‘Guardians of Principle’, or ‘Gathering of Prostitutes’. I opt for the former. I can only hope that CFR whores like Huckabee won’t drag the GOP into fervor of religious craziness, now that the Bush/Rockefeller Republican wing has shown its worthlessness, and that Classical Conservatism comes back in a big way.

  • Dan Lyons

    Also, I think it’s uproariously funny when cowards like “Richmond Area Republican” post under anonymous names. What are you so ashamed of? Don’t have the conviction to say what you think and post your real name, eh? Disgusting.

  • John McCain and his campaign are the embarrassment of the Republican Party, not Jeff Fredrick. McCain and other RINOs did not deserve our votes, and did not get them. Promoting corporate welfare, open borders and more government are not Republican principles.

    If you want tax and spend “reprensentatives” who believe that debt is good for the country, and that wealth must be redistributed to make life “fair” vote Democrat!

    Jeff Fredrick, and other like-minded individuals, represent the opportunity to restore the American Right. When Virginia GOP candidates embrace the Republican Party of Virginia Creed, they win. Those who are lured away from those core values do not deserve the support of real Republicans.

  • Dan Lyons

    Oh, something else – I seem to recall a lot of folks saying, when Marshall lost to Gilmore, “Oh, he’s our party’s nominee, we have to support him.” Might those be some of the same people that are calling for Frederick’s resignation? Holy Hypocrisy, Batman!

    I also recall monetary policy being something that ‘only the fringe carps about’. Guess we should’ve carped harder, that way another Rockefeller Republican/Neo-Con Corporatist-Socialist wouldn’t have been our nominee! To anyone wondering why the GOP lost this time, it’s as simple as this – as a party, we asked for it, and looking in the mirror is the hardest thing to do sometimes when it comes to laying blame.

  • Dan Lyons

    …and another thing! Klinge supported Saslaw, huh? Now THAT’S a communist, this Saslaw fellow. I hear that Wolf also endorsed Warner, and so did Sessums, the new Mayor of Virginia Beach. Now, the by-laws state that you aren’t allowed to support an opposition candidate or oppose a Republican candidate. I was coerced out of my City Committee for merely daring to CRITICIZE Thelma – so when are these bums getting thrown out of the party for supporting opposition candidates? Rules are rules, right? Are we not a party of laws, and not of men? Considering that we aren’t a nation of laws and not of men, it would be nice to see some semblance of order.

    Kick these losers out of the RPV!

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