GOP candidate in 26th raises issue with process
Edited by Chris Graham
The 26th District Republican Committee will meet on April 13 to discuss possible changes to the nomination process that will be used to determine a candidate in the upcoming special House of Delegates election in the district encompassing the City of Harrisonburg and a swath of Rockingham County.
A press release from one of the candidates for the nomination, Harrisonburg attorney John Elledge, that was sent out on Tuesday evening declared the committee’s earlier move to set an April 20 firehouse primary at Lacey Spring Elementary School is in violation of the Plan of Organization for the Republican Party of Virginia.
“People are getting sick and tired of political parties because party insiders engage in backroom politics and manipulation of the political process,” said Elledge, who is challenging Broadway businessman Tony Wilt for the nomination in the 26th, which will become an open seat when Republican State Del. Matt Lohr resigns on May 1 to take the job of commissioner of the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.
A special election will be set thereafter by Gov. Bob McDonnell. The special election is expected to be scheduled for sometime this summer.
The nomination process agreed to by the district GOP is in violation of the party plan, Elledge said, because there is a requirement in the party plan that “”[a]ny Party Canvass that includes more than one (1) Units shall have no less than one (1) polling place in each Unit.”
“I hope that by calling this violation to the attention of the public, we can work to bring sunlight and integrity to the process and engage the many people of the 26th District who adhere to the principles of the Republican Party, but who are not tied to the machine to participate in the selection of the party’s nominee,” Elledge said.