Revolution Update: Citizen-Led PACs Are Fundraising for Chris Peace Write-In Campaign

Two citizen-led PACs have filed paperwork with the Virginia Department of Elections to begin fundraising in support of a growing grassroots movement to write in Republican Chris Peace for the hotly-contested 97th District House of Delegates seat.

With campaign season in high gear, the emergence of these two PACs represents an escalation in the strength of the people-powered movement to return Peace to the House of Delegates following a controversial nominating process which was widely denounced as “rigged” and “the most corrupt process in RPV history.”

The first of the two PACs was launched by Ray Alexander, a local citizen who found himself disenfranchised by Scott Wyatt at a slated mass meeting. Angry at having lost his right to vote, Alexander started the PAC, called Grassroots in Virginia, to buy and distribute yard signs encouraging citizens to write in Republican Chris Peace.

So far, demand for yard signs has exceeded the supply. Alexander hopes to raise more money ASAP to rush another order of signs to citizens on the PAC’s waiting list. While Alexander’s PAC has not launched a website, it has a Facebook page for information, a PayPal account for donations, and questions can be sent to [email protected]. Plans are to order more yard signs as well as 4’x8′ road signs.

With sign vandalism becoming a problem, Grassroots in Virginia is in action mode to raise thousands of dollars in the next week to get their message out and overcome the loss of signs being ripped down.

What kind of a jackass steals campaign signs? Anyway….

The second PAC, My Vote Matters Va, was launched by John Hopkins and aims to educate voters about the need to “support ethical politicians” by printing up and mailing campaign literature and buying digital ads encouraging Republicans to write in Chris Peace.

While the 2,448 Republicans whose votes were thrown away know what happened, many others don’t. My Vote Matters Va hopes to educate them on the corrupted process so that they don’t accidentally vote for Scott Wyatt without knowing what he did to 97th district voters. When this update was submitted, My Vote Matters Va was not set up to take donations electronically, given how fast this people-powered campaign has been launched: My Vote Matters Va, P.O. Box 1916, Mechanicsville, VA 23116.

These two PACs are expected to play a pivotal role in the write-in campaign. Citizens wishing to help should send donations right away so the PACs will have time to print up signs and literature and get it out to voters. Every donation matters and voters in the 97th ALL have a right to know how this process was orchestrated.

The 97th district race has come down to Peace and Wyatt. The district is too strongly Republican for the Democrat to have any chance of winning, even if the GOP vote is split. Despite the Democratic energy in 2017, Peace won 72.2 percent of the vote. In 2015 Peace won with 78.79 percent of the vote.

Republican strategists and volunteers alike say that broad fundraising support from the grassroots will be essential to victory … helping make a huge difference in the fight to right the wrong perpetrated against district voters by the Wyatt campaign and those who chose him to further their own ends.

Back in June, thousands of voters found themselves disenfranchised when 56 insiders at the Republican Party of Virginia, who don’t even live in the district, moved to overturn a validly-called firehouse primary election, ultimately throwing 2,448 ballots in the trash and retroactively deeming Wyatt as the nominee Republicans were forced to accept.

That firehouse primary delivered a huge win for Peace, despite attempts by the Wyatt camp to cancel the election and block Republicans from voting. Unlike the earlier cancelled convention, the firehouse primary allowed all Republicans to vote – not just those on Wyatt’s self-made list of approved voters.

The May convention, which was exposed as having been planned by Wyatt, after he chose his own method of nomination fell apart due to botched preparations  which left citizens with no place to vote three days before the event.

Wyatt had originally reserved a backup date for the convention. But rather than use his own backup date, Wyatt tried to move the convention at the last minute with no notice to voters. The 97th Legislative District Committee (LDC) said that was unfair and would disenfranchise voters and instead planned a firehouse primary with one month’s notice in which everyone would be allowed to vote. RPV confirmed the convention’s cancellation, as well as the absolute right the 97th LDC had to cancel it.

The two PACs are expected to help Republicans learn how Wyatt was “deemed” the nominee by party elites in an underhanded way and why so many angry voters have taken to calling him a “fake nominee.”

Whether the PACs can raise additional money will depend on how many disenfranchised voters and concerned citizens are willing to step up and help set things right. The golden rule is still something that matters in the 97th and it’s time to remind those who have forgotten it.

Delegate Christopher Peace had no knowledge of, did not give or imply his permission for, and has had nothing to do with this post, any posts related to it, or my opinions. He is my Delegate in the 97th, and as my public official, I will avail myself of my First Amendment rights and mention his name as often as I think it is necessary to complete my story.

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