EXCLUSIVE: House Leadership & RPV Chair Calls For Delegate Morris’ Resignation, 4th District 1st Vice Chair Emily Brewer Announces Candidacy

Earlier this week, the Virginian-Pilot broke the story that House of Delegates member Rick Morris (R-64) would be charged with child abuse. Later in the week, the Pilot also announced that he had received additional charges. 

House Speaker Bill Howell, along with the senior House leadership, have now called for the resignation of Delegate Morris. This is their statement.

RICHMOND, VA – Virginia House of Delegates Speaker William J. Howell, Majority Leader M. Kirkland “Kirk” Cox, Caucus Chairman Timothy D. Hugo, Majority Whip Jackson H. Miller and Deputy Majority Leader C. Todd Gilbert issued the following statement Saturday on Delegate Rick Morris.

“We are deeply concerned by the charges against Delegate Rick Morris.  While we all believe that individuals are innocent until proven guilty and entitled to their day in court, these are serious and troubling allegations.  Accordingly, we have asked Delegate Morris to resign his seat effective immediately.  He needs this time to focus on his personal and family life and we pray for the comfort and healing of everyone involved in this situation.

“We are reminded now of the importance of preserving the public’s trust and the expectations, obligations, and duties that come with the privilege of serving in the House of Delegates.  Legislators are expected to conduct themselves in a manner that is above reproach and consistent with the honor and dignity of this body.  We take seriously our responsibility to preserve the integrity of this storied institution, and while we deeply regret having to do so we are compelled to ask for Delegate Morris’s resignation in order to protect the House of Delegates.”

In addition to the House leadership, Republican Party of Virginia Chairman John Whitbeck stated he also wishes for Morris to resign:

. chairman – joins House GOP leadership in calling for resignation of Del. Rick Morris following assault charges.- @RTDSchapiro

Urging Morris to quit b/c of assault charges, GOP leader says he shud put ‘welfare of constituents ahead political career’- @RTDSchapiro

In an exclusive to Bearing Drift, the Fourth Congressional District First Vice Chairwoman Emily Brewer of Suffolk, Virginia has stepped forward and is announcing her candidacy for the 64th House seat. Brewer, in a statement released to Bearing Drift, stated:

Emily Brewer, a small business owner and Republican activist, announced today that she will seek the Republican nomination to represent the 64th District in the Virginia House of Delegates.  Brewer, who served as an alternate delegate representing the 4th Congressional District at the Republican National Convention in Ohio this year, is hoping to now serve the District in the halls of Richmond.

“Our area needs a champion, someone to be the voice for our agriculture industry and of our transportation needs.  I am an effective listener and collaborator and believe I can be a voice for those concerns in Richmond,” said Brewer.

Brewer serves as Vice-Chair of the Republican 4th Congressional District Committee, and has spent hundreds of hours working in the grassroots of Republican activism.  She has worked on numerous Republican campaigns and advocated for policies important to the District as a private citizen.  As a business owner herself, Brewer understands the plight facing small businesses in the 64th District.

“This campaign is not about me.  It’s about us,” added Brewer.  “Our community is not the same as many other parts of the state.  Our community is a rural community, and one with tremendous economic opportunities.  Many of our challenges and opportunities are unique to our community, and we need someone who can advocate for us in Richmond.  I’m humbly asking the residents of the 64th District for their support to be their voice in the House of Delegates.”

Emily Brewer is the owner of Reaction Point Marketing and lives with her husband, Joey.

Emily Brewer with her husband Joey

It is rumored that other candidates will announce for this seat. Check with Bearing Drift to keep up on information as it continues to develop.

 

  • Jax

    Hmmm… another LLC political consultant opening a candidacy statement by rebranding as a “small business owner” in the hope of being viewed favorably as an important job creator suffering under government regulations and taxes.

    This sneaky tactic reminds me of a political cocktail reception joke: You meet someone at a reception and ask what they do. The amateur response is consulting. The more experienced response is small business owner. The reality response is unemployed. LOL!

  • Lori Carlson

    As 64th LDC Chair, I would respectfully remind everyone that Delegate Morris has not resigned. The house is not in session. He is presumed innocent. While I applaud Emily’s desire to serve, her announcement is premature.

    • Do you think he should step down, Lori?

      • John Harvie

        I hope she does.

    • ArthurLeeTalley

      So Lori do you think child abusers and wife beaters have a place in serving the people of Virginia. Why don’t you look a the injuries on his wife and child and tell them he’s innocent.

      • old_redneck

        An even better question is this: Do you think that a serial adulterer and a pedophile and a man who degrades women every time he opens his mouth should be the Republican presidential candidate?

        You rightwingers certainly do have selective outrage.

        • MD Russ

          You omitted the details that the serial adulterer, pedophile, and misogynist, is also a deadbeat who stiffs his contractors, cheats on his taxes, a crook who is facing a class action lawsuit for wire and mail fraud, and also a New York Democrat. And yet, a large segment of Republican voters supported him for the nomination. that is not selective, that is just plain weird.

    • YGtrece

      Step up and lead. End of discussion. Get behind Emily and put out a statement in line with that of HoD leadership et al

      This is not the kind of situation that warrants a “we need to sit back and wait” attitude.

  • redvagirl0458

    Regardless of whether or not he has resigned, next year is an election year. By asking for his resignation, House Leadership has already signaled they have lost their confidence in him to govern and serve the interests of his district. The Delegate should resign immediately, and deal with this matter as privately as possible, rather than in the public eye which will only be a hardship on his family, and will only be multiplied if he chooses to throw his hat in for re-election. While he is, of course, innocent until proven guilty, that is (unfortunately) only within the eyes of the law. That says nothing about public opinion, and the last thing he should want is to put his family through a campaign year with this hanging about is head.

    • MD Russ

      The story on the WTVR web site states that during a physical altercation Morris caused his wife to injure her ankle, resulting in a “temporary cast” being placed on the ankle. That implies that there is such a thing as a permanent cast. Has anybody ever seen one?

      Political leaders should not be making decisions based on oft-inaccurate media reporting, but based on documented, factual information. Was there a rush to judgement here?

      • Stephen Spiker

        Perhaps a rush to judgment, but this is a situation where there is a heavy political price to pay for being too late to judge, and no political price to pay for being too early.

        • MD Russ

          So political expediency trumps due process. Got it.

  • Wally Erb

    It would seem that the decision of resignation rests with the Delegate. What will he plea to the allegations? Why is lack of confidence automatically assumed when charges are filed? Would resignation be assumed that a guilty plea by the defendant is to follow?
    I personally believe Ms. Brewer’s anointment is premature and in poor taste, pending the Delegate’s decision.

  • That’s an oddly cropped photo.

  • Randy

    I would like to pose a scenario to you. Obviously the House leadership has issued a clear vote of no confidence and has asked Mr. Morris to resign. It is certainly up to Mr. Morris whether he chooses to resign or continue to serve in the House. However the following could happen. If Mr. Morris decides not to resign, Mr. Morris could be stripped of all of his committee assignments. He could have any of the bills he proposes killed quickly in committee. He will be seated as far off to the side on the floor of the House to be almost invisible. He will not be recognized to speak on the floor of the House. Finally his office could be located to a remote region in the General Assembly Building. You might ask is how could this come to pass. Well everyone of those consequences is controlled by the Speaker who can make all or part of them come to pass.
    One may ask is there any precedent for this. One need look no farther than several years ago with Joe Morrisey, late of the General Assembly and now candidate for Mayor of Richmond. Every one of the above consequences happened to Morrisey. Now the Speaker had to pull the trigger, but in that case the Democratic Minority Leader and the Democratic leadership in the House handed the Speaker the gun, ammunition and consent to do exactly that.
    No guarantee this will happen, but after the statement this weekend I don’t see the Republican leadership doing nothing.

    • MD Russ

      Randy,

      If I am not mistaken, the calls for Morrissey’s resignation and the sanctions against him occurred after he entered an Alford plea and was convicted, not when the media reported his charging.

      • Randy

        You are correct. However, the difference I see is the leadership statement this past weekend. They don’t seem to be content to wait until the proceedings are over. I don’t think the trial will occur until late Spring after the session concludes. It is clear they don’t want to wait for that.

        • MD Russ

          I guess that I have been around too long. I remember the days that when an elected official was involved in a scandal he would have the self-respect to resign in disgrace, unless he knew that he would be completely exonerated. Given the physical evidence, exoneration is highly unlikely in Morris’ case. Richard Nixon resigned when the Republican leadership in Congress told him that a Bill of Impeachment was going to be passed in the House. On the other hand, Bill Clinton refused to resign when the Democratic leadership told him the same thing and he put the country through a painful trial in the Senate and a borderline Constitutional crisis. My personal belief is that the Clinton impeachment and trial was the watershed event that led to the current divisiveness whereby partisan interests supersede the good of the country as a whole.

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