Blog

All Blog Posts

From Jail Threat to Republican National Convention: The Journey of the Catoosa GOP Secretary

From Jail Threat to Republican National Convention: The Journey of the Catoosa GOP Secretary

Ringgold, GA – When 77-year-old widow Sherre Bales asked what was involved in the open Catoosa GOP Secretary position, she had no clue that her involvement might eventually lead to crippling fines and prospective time in the County jail. She was told the duties would include taking minutes and keeping records, which sounded easy enough. 

Sherre grew up around politics knocking Chattanooga doors with her parents at the age of 14 and occasionally making phone calls to Republican voters. Now as a semi-retired real estate agent, struggling to make a commission in Biden’s economy, her volunteer service to her community may cost her dearly. 

Cat

Sherre is one of the Catoosa GOP officers that was ordered by a local judge to refrain from refusing to qualify four commission candidates after they were denied access to the Republican primary ballot for their lack of adherence to Republican policies. For refusing, she and her fellow GOP officers  faced $1,000 per hour fines and jail time. 

Bales 1

Sherre’s political involvement has been occasional throughout her adult life and was almost never paid work. It was something she did as a volunteer at different stages of her life in between raising children and starting her business. 

“I’m pretty friendly and personable, so I’m good at door to door,” she said. 

Like many GOP volunteers who tirelessly put up campaign signs, make phone calls and wear out their tennis shoes door-knocking, Sherre had experienced the disappointment of having a candidate she volunteered for “turn RINO” after getting elected. 

“They would change from what they campaigned on,” said Sherre.

Regret. Betrayal. Disillusion. Exploitation. 

It is difficult to describe the intense feelings of a volunteer who believed in the policies that a candidate talked about, was motivated enough to put time and sweat behind that campaign, only to be double-crossed when the politician changed their tune after getting elected. This was a common theme among Sherre’s different volunteer experiences working for Republican candidates. 

Like most voters, Sherre had never personally attended a county commission meeting until she got elected Secretary in 2021. By 2023 the community was embroiled in a battle for the freedom to keep backyard chickens with 100 or more citizens showing up at Commission meetings to voice concerns about a new chicken ordinance. At these meetings families would beg their Commissioners to let them keep their chickens and give them a chance to experience the health, economic, and educational benefits for their children. 

“There was so much going on about the chickens and I thought, ‘I guess I had better go since I’m the Secretary of the party.’” Sherre was not prepared for what she saw at the Commission meeting that night.

“I was just floored by how the public was treated. It made me so mad. I felt like [the commissioners] were just overlording over us as minions. It was frustrating and humiliating.”

The Catoosa Commissioners have developed a reputation of not caring what the people think, not treating them with respect, and ignoring the hundreds of citizens that would show up to voice concerns about their actions. The commissioners changed the agenda of the meetings to put public comments at the end, after all the voting and decision making was finished. 

All of the Commissioners claim to be Republicans, and every election season there is an expectation that GOP volunteers like Sherre have a responsibility to help rally the vote for all Republican candidates.

Cat2

The Catoosa GOP had been frustrated with the commissioners for years, and Sherre and the other officers felt hopeful about the new Accountability Rule and the process that was established to determine if a candidate really shared the values of the Republican Party. 

“Every GOP local party needs to be able to vet their candidates. I know we’ve got some non-Republicans running. You could have a socialist or communist, and if you don’t vet them, people could get in under wire,” she said.

The rule implemented a new practice for Catoosa county, but not a new concept. The state level Republican Party exercises the freedom of association in whom they allow on the Republican presidential preference primary ballot. 

 “It was kind of like a leap of faith that we could do it.”

Sherre’s signature was required on the official copy of the new party rules, and they were filed with the elections office in the same way as they had been filed for many years, and by many GOP Secretaries prior to Sherre. As an officer of the party, Sherre was one of the 16 members of the County Committee who had a vote on which candidates they believed met the minimum standard to be considered a Republican. Sherre was present during all the candidate interviews. 

“We were pretty somber. I was nervous about what was going to happen after we listened to all the candidates.”

“I did not have my mind made up on anybody when it came down to voting. People can say anything, but I went by what their voting record was [while in office]. It was not personalities, it was voting record. We knew this was a big thing and it was unprecedented. We took each candidate and we discussed them and then we voted. Everybody voted from their heart.”

Most of the candidates that interviewed with the party were qualified, and only four were denied – the notorious incumbent commissioners and a former commission chairman: Steven Henry, Vanita Hullender, Larry Black, and Jeff Long.

Less than a week later the Catoosa GOP volunteers were being sued by the four candidates and the judge ordered the Catoosa GOP to sign the qualifying papers approving the candidates as a Republican, or else. 

“I was really taken aback when we were threatened with 20 days in jail and thousands of dollars of fines.”

“To go against the court… that’s not how I was raised. I was raised to abide by the law – what was said in court was to be followed. But in this case, I couldn’t. I was Secretary of the Committee. The committee voted this way and that was the way it was going to be.”

She was driven by a sense of duty. Her commitment to her office, and her principles constrained Sherre to abide by the agreed upon rules of the party. 

She knew she wasn’t in it alone. The GOP leaders prayed together before they went into the courtroom. 

“Our faith is getting us through this.”

Sherre talked to her adult son and two daughters about the situation as well. They said it was ridiculous that the commissioners can throw their weight around. 

You just stand firm, Mom.”

The Catoosa GOP county committee was pretty tight-knit already but this experience really bonded them. Some shed tears, some were quietly resolute, fully prepared to suffer for what they knew was right.

 “It was difficult. We were crying. We’re gonna do it, but it’s hard and we’re scared. We had to stick together.”

Sherre had already given up a lot of her time away from her grandchildren, her real estate business, and her cats to serve the cause she believed in, but this was a real test of dedication. Now she was spending long hours in the courtroom anxiously waiting to see if she and her fellow officers would be put in jail like common criminals. 

The case is being appealed and Sherre is eager to hear the decision of Judge Billy Ray in the Rome-based federal court, as well as the other courts addressing different aspects of this controversy.

“If the judge imposes those fines, I’d be pretty mad and pretty scared. Where am I gonna get that?“ 

Sherre never envisioned herself being in a position like this at 77-years-old, but she doesn’t regret her actions. 

“I’m happy we did it. I will go to the Supreme Court with this if we have to. We have got to set a precedent that local parties can vet their candidates.”

Meanwhile, Sherre has been chosen to represent Northwest Georgia at the Republican National Convention this Summer. She was elected unanimously by the roughly 200 delegates at the 14th District GOP Convention as an alternate. These same delegates overwhelmingly passed a resolution supporting the freedom of association and the recent actions of the Catoosa GOP. Sherre has loved attending Trump rallies and it will be the experience of a lifetime for her to be able to see Donald J Trump nominated for President. 

What an adventure I’ve been on! Threatened with jail and a bunch of money and now going to the RNC,” she said.

This is going to be the icing on the cake of my Republican career!”

Statement on Texting Opt-Out Glitch

Statement on Texting Opt-Out Glitch

We’ve had some people reach out and ask us why the GRA-PAC‘s name appeared on an auto-response opt-out text that had apparently been sent out from the Georgia Examiner, pointing to an article about 2nd Vice Chair David Cross voting against the GA GOP endorsing Donald Trump for President back in January. Cross is currently a candidate for GA GOP National Committeeman.

The Georgia Examiner is not an affiliate of the GRA or the GRA-PAC. While some of our members may be involved in the Georgia Examiner, we did not authorize the Georgia Examiner to send out texts using the name of our organization or of our PAC. After making inquiries, it seems that the reason for this error was that a third-party who has provided texting services for both the GRA-PAC and the Georgia Examiner accidentally forgot to clear their software after they provided a texting service for one of our endorsed candidates the GRA-PAC was promoting. The third-party failed to remove the GRA-PAC’s name from the automatically generated opt-out response when it set up the texting project for the Georgia Examiner.

We apologize for any confusion this may have caused. The GRA membership voted to not endorse in this year’s National Committeeman race, but you can see the forum we held with National Committeeman candidates on our YouTube Channel here.

Announcing GRA Endorsements!

Announcing GRA Endorsements!

Fayetteville, GA — GRA members from around the state gathered last Saturday to hear from candidates for National CommitteemanNational Committeewoman, and various public offices from Congress to state legislature. Reagan Box for U.S. Senate shared as well, along with a representative for excellent “state-wide” judicial candidate for Court of Appeals Jeff Davis.

Candidates Amy KremerGinger HowardJason Frazier and Jason Thompson all applied for GRA endorsement, interviewed with our Vetting Committee, and spoke at the convention, fielding questions from the audience. Candidates David Cross and Shawn Cross did not. We appreciate the candidates who gave of their time to share and answer questions from our members.

IMG 0096 1024x768

Under the GRA rules, a candidate has to receive a two-thirds majority vote of participating members to receive the endorsement of the organization. Although the membership could not reach a two-thirds majority on the races for National Committeeman and National Committeewoman, they did endorse candidates in other races — and the discussion at the convention provided a great deal of insight on the candidates.

You can watch highlight videos now available on our GRA YouTube Channel of some of the key sessions at the convention! Especially if you will be serving as a delegate to the GA GOP State Convention in Columbus, this will help you make an informed decision on who to vote for in the National Committeeman & National Committeewoman races.

Candidates who were endorsed by the GRA at the convention:

Clyde
U.S. Rep. Andrew Clyde

• Andrew Clyde for GA Congressional District 9

• Beth Majeroni for State Senate District 1

• Ross Harvin for State Senate District 47

• Mary Benefield for State Senate District 55

• Brian Anderson for State House District 80

• Catherine Bernard for State House District 83

• Keith Bowen for Miller County Commissioner, District 3

• Ryan Taylor for Appling County Probate Judge

Catoosa GOP Finally Gets Heard In Federal Court

Catoosa GOP Finally Gets Heard In Federal Court

Rome, GA — Wednesday, federal Judge Billy Ray heard arguments from the Catoosa GOP that the Catoosa Board of Elections acted unlawfully when they followed state Superior Court Judge Don W. Thompson‘s order to violate the Catoosa GOP’s 1st Amendment protected right to freedom of association by forcing four known RINO candidates onto the Republican primary ballot. These candidates have a record of implementing democrat policies (like raising taxes, prohibiting property rights, etc.) and opposing basic tenants of the Republican Party platform. For the first time, attorneys for the Catoosa GOP were allowed to present their legal arguments in the courtroom since Judge Thompson had precluded any oral arguments on the merits of the Catoosa GOP’s position in his courtroom in Ringgold.

At issue is whether private organizations (such as political parties, businesses, clubs, or churches) have the right to freely associate or disassociate with someone who does not share the standards of that private organization. Recent SCOTUS precedent on that question says political parties do have that right, according to the Catoosa GOP.

Ray
Federal Judge Billy Ray

Unlike the courtroom in Ringgold, the federal courtroom in Rome hearing this case was not covered in police officers or following unusual measures in an effort to intimidate. Indeed, the federal courtroom did not appear to have a single officer in the room. Federal Judge Ray adopted a very inquisitive posture, asking numerous questions of attorneys, coming at the controversy from many angles, and musing aloud regarding the implications of different legal positions.

Judge Ray mentioned in the proceedings that the threats of jail time and exorbitant $1,000 per hour fines against the Catoosa GOP Executive Committee members that were imposed by Judge Don W. Thompson should, it seemed to him, no longer apply since that was from a civil case and the plaintiffs have already obtained their desired remedy. Time will tell if other judges in on-going proceedings agree with Judge Ray on that point.

The crux of this case is really questioning the very essence of a political party,” said GRA NFRA Director Abigail Darnell. “If a political party plays nothing more than a superficial administrative role, rubber stamping every candidate with no regard to their beliefs or their record on public policy, then why have a political party at all?”

Wscgop 768x1024
Some of the supporters of the Catoosa GOP who came to the Rome courtroom meet for lunch after the federal hearing Wednesday.

Attorneys Alex Johnson and David Oles (also the 11th Congressional District Chairman) were on hand to represent the Catoosa GOP, and Catoosa County government attorney Christopher Harris represented the Catoosa Board of Elections members. Harris also represents the county commissioners — three of which are also among the four rejected candidates — which, as an employee of the county, paid by those commissioners, appears to be a conflict of interest.

Harris made the argument that the Catoosa GOP procedures for vetting and qualifying candidates were “inconsistent” with the GA GOP state party rules. Attorney Alex Johnson pointed out that there is no “inconsistency” because the GA GOP State Party rules do not address county processes on this point, and certainly do not preclude county party’s vetting and refusing to qualify candidates who don’t demonstrate a track record of faithfulness to Republican Party platform principles. The Catoosa GOP rules, including the new accountability measures and candidate vetting process, were unanimously approved by the delegates at the Catoosa GOP County Convention after the rejected candidates filed their lawsuit.

Harris also argued that such an Accountability Rule was rejected by the GA GOP State Convention last year. When Judge Billy Ray asked attorney Alex Johnson about that event, Johnson pointed out that he was actually the delegate at the convention who had submitted the proposed Accountability Rule last year, and that that proposed Accountability Rule had nothing to do with county party organizations. He also pointed out that the rule was never actually allowed to be voted on at the convention since it was blocked in committee and the convention chairman did not allow the proposal to be brought up from the floor.

IMG 4512 1024x836

Far-left newspaper Atlanta Journal Constitution reporter Greg Bluestein was in the federal courtroom observing and incorrectly reported yesterday that Johnson’s proposed Accountability Rule would have given the GA GOP the power to reject candidates to state office. In actuality, the GA GOP already possesses the constitutional authority to reject candidates under the freedom of association — and has recently done so for the presidential ballot last year as well as for former K.K.K. clansman David Dukes when he attempted to run for president as a Republican in 1992. The proposed Accountability Rule from last year would have only provided a process for the delegates at a state convention to vote on potentially blocking a state candidate from running for future office as a Republican instead of that authority being seen as exclusively the domain of the GA GOP 28-person Executive Committee or the 180-person State Committee. According to the Call of the GA GOP, the state convention has a capacity this year of 2,641 delegates.

Stwrs
In Star Wars, Chancellor Palpatine violates the freedom of association of the Jedi Council by forcing them to allow Anakin Skywalker to have a seat on the council. Later Palpatine would dissolve the Republic, declaring himself Emperor.

Federal Judge Ray allowed Johnson to chronicle how Judge Don W. Thompson had called an ex parte hearing with little notice to the attorneys on the Tuesday morning the week of candidate qualifying, and did not allow attorneys to present oral arguments on the First Amendment issue of right of association. Johnson delved deeply into the extensive case law from the United States Supreme Court which repeatedly applies that legal right specifically to political parties.

Judge Ray asked Johnson about the interplay between state law specifying the procedure for how candidates are qualified and the U.S. Constitution in the 1st Amendment. Attorneys for the four RINO candidates have argued that the state law does not specify that political parties have any discretion over qualifying candidates who appear and follow the process. Johnson argued that the state law must be seen to be in conformity with the First Amendment and not in conflict with it. If somehow the state law did prohibit freedom of association, Johnson pressed, the 1st Amendment from the U.S. Constitution must have supremacy over state law. “That’s what the Civil Rights movement was all about,” Johnson said.

The Catoosa GOP’s county committee voted unanimously to adopt the procedures in their organization’s rules for vetting and qualifying candidates. The members of that committee are elected every two years by the local activists in Catoosa County, and serve as the representatives of the Republican voters in that county. They are responsible for guarding the interests of the local Republican Party, says the Catoosa GOP, including upholding minimum standards of quality that Republican voters can rely on when they go to vote in the primaries. Approving a candidate for qualifying as a Republican operates as a stamp of approval that voters, who cannot often pay close attention to local government operations, can rely.

Catoosa GOP’s Muzzled Ballot Questions

IMG 4514 768x1024

The hearing on Wednesday also addressed ballot questions the Catoosa GOP had submitted to the Catoosa Board of Elections to be included on the Catoosa Republican Primary ballot. Some of those questions inquired about voters’ awareness of the candidate qualifying controversy, and awareness of public votes of the County Commission and were not an example of defamation. County attorney Harris said that the Secretary of State’s office had told the local BOE to refuse to use the questions because, they argued, they were illegally “electioneering.” However, Harris admitted “in candor to the court” that the Secretary of State’s office called him and said they are no longer claiming the ballot questions are “electioneering” and that the decision rested solely with the Catoosa Elections Board. Judge Ray pointed out through his questions that the statute prohibiting “electioneering” says no “person” shall engage in that activity, and neither a printed ballot nor a voting machine are a legal person under that statute. He also said that the statute relating to qualifying questions from political parties says they “shall” be posted and do not give the Board of Elections much discretion on whether to post questions submitted or not.

“This is yet another atrocious example of bias and discrimination against the Catoosa GOP,” said Abigail Darnell. “If this illegal action is allowed to stand, it will demoralize GOP activists and discourage party participation across the state. I mean, why would I want to give unpaid volunteer hours to an organization just to be strong-armed by the government? Party activists shouldn’t be forced to conform to a government-approved message or government-forced association.”

Time is Ticking

The ballots will soon be finalized for the upcoming primary election in May.

Federal Judge Billy Ray pointed out that he has particular experience in the subject matter of the case since he was formerly a Republican State Senator from northeast Georgia from 1996 to 2002, so he was familiar with candidate qualifying procedures, and he had also formerly been a Gwinnett County GOP officer responsible for qualifying candidates. In 2002, Ray was appointed to the state superior court by out-going Democrat Governor Roy Barnes. Ten years later he was appointed by Republican Governor Nathan Deal to the Georgia Court of Appeals. In 2018, he was appointed by former President Donald Trump to the federal District Court for Northern Georgia.

Judge Ray cautioned at the conclusion of the proceeding that he would not be making any promises on how quickly he would decide on this case. He made it clear he did not want to be rushed, even though he was mindful that the ballots would soon be printed for the Catoosa Republican primary election in May. He also pointed out that even if the four candidates do end up on the ballot, the Catoosa GOP could still pursue monetary damages.

How To Recognize A Good Candidate (and Avoid the RINOs)

How To Recognize A Good Candidate (and Avoid the RINOs)

Not all Republicans are the same. What is the difference between a good Republican and a bad one?

One of the major distinctions between a GRA-endorsed candidate and a run-of-the-mill Republican is how the candidate would determine if a piece of legislation is good or bad.

Broun 1024x768
(R to L) Former Congressman Paul Broun with his wife and former State Sen. Mike Crane

The esteemed former Congressman Dr. Paul Broun (GA-10) developed an excellent method of evaluating legislation that could serve as a model for any candidate. It was a simple four question test.

1) Is it Moral?
2) Is it Constitutional?
3) Do We Need it?
4) Can We Afford it?

Dr. Broun required the legislation to pass all four questions to receive his support. Using this grid, he earned the nickname “Dr. No” while serving in Congress because of the minuscule number of bills that passed his four question test and earned his “yes” vote.

Cand

Of course, all of these questions presuppose that the legislator has actually read the bill. In the event the legislative leadership places a large bill on your desk in the morning and expects you to vote on it by Noon, the default vote should be “No.”

In addition to Dr. Broun’s four question test, I imagine our founding fathers might ask these questions as well:

Does this legislation conform to the laws of nature?
Is this legislation in harmony with the Law of nature’s God?
Would this bill be just to all of my constituents?

Chub 768x1024
The T-shirt most of the incumbent “Republicans” are handing out at their fundraisers this time of year. 😉

By contrast, the establishment RINO candidates have a strikingly different grid for evaluating legislation that goes something like this:

1) Does the Republican Leadership approve of this bill?
2) What would my large donors think about this bill?
3) Would this legislation advance my personal political career?
4) How is the mainstream media likely to characterize this bill?
5) Would I be criticized for supporting this bill?
6) Would I be marginalized by other legislators for supporting this bill?

Another factor to consider as we attend candidate forums this year is the character of the candidate. The Bible provides a divinely inspired list of qualifications for determining whether an elected official is worthy of being entrusted with authority. Exodus 18:21 says:

“Moreover thou shalt provide out of all the people able men, such as fear God, men of truth, hating covetousness; and place such over them, to be rulers of thousands, and rulers of hundreds, rulers of fifties, and rulers of tens:”

Following the Exodus of God’s people out of slavery in Egypt, Moses was tasked with implementing a system of government for adjudicating controversies among the 3 million former slaves of the fledgling nation. It was not a centralized government. It was decentralized. (See this article.) They established rulers of thousands, rulers of hundreds, rulers of fifties, and rulers of tens.

This became the requirement for the rulers and judges over the people, at every level:

    ⁃    Able men (competence)
    ⁃    Fear God
    ⁃    Men of Truth
    ⁃    Hating Covetousness

Noah Webster Portrait

Founding Father Noah Webster, who wrote the first American Dictionary, said:
“When you become entitled to exercise the right of voting for public officers, let it be impressed on your mind that God commands you to choose for rulers, ‘just men who will rule in the fear of God.’ The preservation of government depends on the faithful discharge of this duty; if the citizens neglect their duty and place unprincipled men in office, the government will soon be corrupted; laws will be made, not for the public good so much as for selfish or local purposes; corrupt or incompetent men will be appointed to execute the laws; the public revenues will be squandered on unworthy men; and the rights of the citizens will be violated or disregarded. If a republican government fails to secure public prosperity and happiness, it must be because the citizens neglect the divine commands, and elect bad men to make and administer the laws.”  
[Noah Webster, History of the United States (New Haven: Durrie & Peck, 1832), pp. 336-337.]

An inclination of magistrates to greed, corruption, accepting bribes or special interest lobbyists money has been a concern for more than 4,000 years. It crosses party lines and remains one of the major concerns among honest American voters today.

According to Exodus 18:21, one of the qualities you should look for in a civil magistrate is someone who has a righteous indignation and disgust for covetousness. Any candidate who truly hates covetousness is probably not, for example, going to be able to vote in good conscience for the Georgia budget next year without a massive overhaul to remove the corporate welfare handouts to Hollywood companies, among other things.

Similarly, lying politicians must have been a problem 4,000 years ago as well, because “men of truth” is another requirement. A commitment to the truth is vital among those leading in the civil realm. A man of truth keeps his campaign promises. A man of truth doesn’t tell constituents he is pro-life, then tell the feminists he supports abortion, and change his position a dozen times based on the audience present or the latest polling data.

These requirements, and the Law of God, became the foundation for the Hebrew Republic. Our founding fathers recognized the importance of these qualities as essential to the preservation of our constitutional republic. (See this article.)

So, as you attend candidate forums this year and consider which Republicans to support in the primary, try asking the candidates “If you were elected, how would you evaluate legislation?” And judge them by the Exodus 18:21 standard. What are some other questions that you have found useful? Please comment them below.

10 Candidates Endorsed at Regional RA METRO Endorsement Convention!

10 Candidates Endorsed at Regional RA METRO Endorsement Convention!

Canton, GA — Three GRA local chapters joined together last Saturday for a combined Regional Metro Endorsement Convention. Our North Metro RA Chapter (which includes Cherokee & Pickens counties), our Cobb RA chapter, and the Fulton RA chapter combined to hold a regional endorsement for local races in three congressional districts, spanning ten counties. Many GRA Members have been working for months to recruit candidates to primary RINOs and on Saturday they came together and endorsed ten candidates at this local endorsement convention.

Most of these legislative candidates at the event pledged to join the Georgia Freedom Caucus, affirmed their support for government accountability and indicated they would pattern their time in the legislature after State Senator Colton Moore (R-Dade). State Rep. Charlice Byrd (R-Cherokee) also gave one of the keynote messages at the event, re-capping what happened during the recent legislative session, and called for more candidates to join the caucus.

GRA President Nathaniel Darnell, who presided over the regional endorsement convention, interviewed the candidates from the stage, and participating members took turns asking well-thought-out questions from the floor as well.

The GRA only endorsed candidates by a two-thirds majority of the voting members at a convention. Here below are the candidates endorsed at this regional convention:

GA State House

Charlice Byrd, HD 20 (Cherokee)
https://charlicebyrd.com

Paul Kettering, HD 22 (Cobb & Cherokee)
https://ketteringforgahouse.com

Gary Chafee, HD 35 (Acworth area).
https://chaffeeforga.com

Phoebe Eckhardt, HD 47, (Milton area, North Fulton).
http://phoebe4georgiarep.com

• Norine Cantor, HD 30 (Flowery Branch)
https://www.norinecantor.com

Michael Gordon, HD 49 (Fulton)
https://www.gordon4georgia.org

Gregg Kirkpatrick, HD 21 (Cherokee)
https://www.kirkpatrickforga.com

Judicial

Trey Goodwin, Cherokee Chief Magistrate

GA State Senate

Ben Paul Fremer, SD 32 (challenging incumbent Kay Kirkpatrick)
https://www.benpaulfremer.com

U.S Congress

Michael Pons for 11th Congressional District (Bartow, Cobb, Cherokee, Gordon, & Pickens)
https://www.mikepons.org

GRA Regional Metro Chapters Pass Resolution Supporting Catoosa GOP and Donate to Catoosa Legal Fund

GRA Regional Metro Chapters Pass Resolution Supporting Catoosa GOP and Donate to Catoosa Legal Fund

Canton, GA – On Saturday GRA Members from ten counties gathered to hold a convention where they passed a resolution supporting the accountability efforts of the Catoosa GOP.

GRA Members heartily support the right to freedom of association and were enthusiastically in support of their fellow patriots in Catoosa county who are trail-blazing the Accountability Rule that could benefit Republicans across the state.

The Resolution states that “elected officials who do not implement the Republican platform tarnish the Republican brand, discourage voters, and deter party participation”.

The resolution included a donation of $500 from two GRA chapters to help support the Catoosa GOP in this legal battle since this precedent will affect liberty-lovers everywhere. The resolution also encouraged all GRA members in the three congressional districts represented at the convention to make a personal donation to fight this lawfare battle.

The Catoosa GOP has made it known that their attorneys are all volunteering their time to help with this case, but that there are many other expenses and court costs that people can help them cover. You can donate to their GiveSendGo here:

Givesend

The Catoosa GOP is merely upholding the GAGOP platform policy positions.

It is likely that Republicans everywhere – from the Governor’s mansion on down – are watching this legal battle with keen interest. It is clear that the establishment, faux-Republicans across the state feel threatened by this precedent being set in Catoosa and will stop at nothing to squash it.

Read More
Catoosa GOP Challenges Illegal Qualifying of RINOs, BOE votes 4-1 for RINOs

Catoosa GOP Challenges Illegal Qualifying of RINOs, BOE votes 4-1 for RINOs

Ringgold, GA — On Tuesday the Catoosa Board of Elections held a hearing to consider the illegal qualifying of four candidates who attempted to force their way onto the Republican ballot by circumventing the local GOP.

A whopping 53 Catoosa County voters filed official voter challenges to the qualifying of these four candidates and this hearing was called to consider the controversy and give those 53 voters an opportunity to speak before the board.

GRA President Nathaniel Darnell reports live at the Catoosa County Board of Elections Hearing
IMG 4518 768x1024

More than 25 patriots gathered outside the courthouse before the meeting, waving signs in favor of the GOP and the accountability rule that ultimately led to the denial of the Republican brand to four commission candidates: Steven Henry, Larry Black, Jeff Long, and Vanita Hullender.

“The only reason that we are here today is because the law has not been followed,” said Catoosa GOP member Adrianne Kittle at the hearing. “I am angry that I have to be here today all because there are four individuals who want to steal the Republican brand and strong arm their way onto the Republican primary ballot. … Each candidate voluntarily participated in the process and interview … and they did not pass because their actions while in office are the antithesis of a Republican Representative!”

More than a dozen citizens spoke to the board in protest of Judge Don W. Thompson’s order to circumvent the party and have the elections superintendent qualify the candidates as Republicans in spite of the party.

Many aspects of this Board of Elections meeting were unusual and seemed to be conducted to stack the deck against those challenging the four candidates. The public hearing was conducted more like a judicial courtroom proceeding than a standard Board of Elections hearing, where usually citizens are allowed to hold signs in the seats and record what transpires. But this Board of Elections hearing was held in the county courthouse where phones and recording devices were prohibited, which violated state law O.C.G.A. § 50-14-1(c) which states “Visual and sound recording during open meetings shall be permitted.”

IMG 4516 1024x768

Those making public comments were compelled to be “sworn in” like in a trial. “I was on the elections board for 18 months,” said Debbie Gwaltney. “During my time as a board member, not once did we ever put someone under oath to testify before the board in a public hearing. I’m flabbergasted!”

Furthermore, attorneys for the RINO candidates were allowed to bring in “witnesses” who had not filed formal complaints or voter challenges with the Board.

The attorneys for the RINO candidates even attempted to cross-examine each of the voters after their public comments! They squabbled over definitions and posed numerous leading questions to put words in the citizens’ mouths. After seeing numerous “cross examinations” of their fellow patriots, speakers began refusing to answer questions.

Crystal

Another unjust aspect of the hearing was that the four attorneys for the candidates were allowed to each give “closing arguments” like in a court hearing. All four attorneys gave their own closing arguments, but not one person was allowed an equal opportunity to give closing arguments for the Catoosa GOP before the Board moved to executive session and the vote. It was as if they treated it as a judicial hearing when it benefitted the RINOs and then treated it like a normal, casual board meeting when it came to the Catoosa GOP members. All of these things just infuriated the patriots more and more.

NWGRA Member Jim Coles from Catoosa made several helpful analogies to drive home the importance of freedom of association. “Would you force the Republican Jewish Coalition to accept a Neo-Nazi member? Would you force the NAACP to accept a KKK member?” asked Coles.

Read More
GRA Endorses Mike Crane for 3rd Congressional District Republican Primary Race!

GRA Endorses Mike Crane for 3rd Congressional District Republican Primary Race!

Congratulations to former State Senator Mike Crane for winning the GRA’s endorsement last night in the 3rd Congressional District Republican Primary at the West Georgia Republican Assembly Endorsement Convention! 1f44f Mike had a stellar record as a state legislator and has served as the 3rd District GA GOP Chairman since leaving office.

We expect that Mike Crane will make a big improvement to current Congressman Drew Ferguson. In 2016, Mike made it into a close runoff with Drew in the Republican primary for the same seat. Last year Ferguson fell under criticism for backing former U.S. Speaker Kevin McCarthy and going back on his pledge on who he would support to elect as McCarthy’s replacement.

We would urge you to get to know Mike better and to support his campaign at https://www.craneforcongress.com/.

Regional Endorsement Convention Opens to More Counties in Metro-Atlanta

Regional Endorsement Convention Opens to More Counties in Metro-Atlanta

Combolgo 1024x277

The Fulton Republican Assembly chapter has decided to join in with two other local chapters in Metro-Atlanta for an up-coming Combined Regional Endorsement Convention on April 6th! That means that the convention will now be able to endorse in Congressional Districts 6, 7, and 11 — and all local state legislative and commission races in the geographic area. In addition, GRA members who live in counties in these congressional districts can also participate even if they don’t have a local RA chapter for their area. So now GRA members from BartowDouglasForsythDawsonLumpkin, and Hall counties will also be able to join with CobbCherokeeFulton, and Pickens for this event.

Remember that an RA endorsement always requires a two-thirds majority vote.

Separately, the West GRA chapter has announced that it is holding its local endorsement convention for races within the 3rd Congressional District area on Tuesday, April 2nd. Learn more on our Events page.

Already, at the Combined Regional Endorsement Convention in metro-Atlanta, some key contests are shaping up for the regional endorsement convention. Candidate Paul Kettering, for example, has qualified to challenge incumbent State Rep. Jordan Ridley (R-22) whose district covers part of Cherokee and part of Cobb. Ridley two years ago won election to office in an open seat after receiving the GRA endorsement. He also took the maximum contribution from the GRA-PAC. But after getting elected, Ridley quickly distanced himself from his supporters and the GA Freedom Caucus, earning himself a legislative vote score of 43% (“D”) in 2023.

Ketrid 1024x751

Kettering says he’s running as a true conservative America First patriot, and aims to replace Ridley for the Republican nomination in State House District 22. He has already confirmed as one of the candidate speakers at the regional endorsement convention.

To pre-register for this 2024 local RA Regional Endorsement Convention, please register hereLunch will be included.

Early-bird pricing is available for those registering before April 6, 2024. At the door pricing will be $25 per participating RA member. Candidates registering to speak at the event pay a $50 sponsorship. Other like-minded partner organizations pay $75 to hold a table at this regional endorsement convention.

If you are not yet a GRA member, but would like to apply to join, you can do so at this link.

If you are concerned about the direction of our country, don’t yell at the TV or stay home and complain, please join us in taking constructive action. One person by himself is helpless to stop the leftist onslaught, but by working together we can fight and, with God’s help, save our community.

Endorsement conventions provide an opportunity to meet and network with like-minded patriots who share the same passions and causes you care about. By attending these conventions you will be encouraged and feel better to know you are not alone and are doing something to help make a difference for the next generation. 

We hope to see you at the regional endorsement convention!