Senator Amanda Chase (R-Chesterfield), who is running for the GOP gubernatorial nomination, announced Tuesday that she is suing the Republican Party of Virginia (RPV). Chase has been critical of the RPV decision to hold a nominating convention since the decision was first announced in December. Now, after months of fractious debate in the RPV over that decision, Chase is suing, arguing that she is harmed by the RPV choosing a nominating method currently illegal under Executive Order 72, which bans large gatherings like an in-person convention.
In her announcement, Chase said, “How will Republicans win in November if candidates don’t even know the details of the nomination process? Clearly, many welcome the standoff. It means they, members of the SCC will choose the Republican nominees; and apparently, they’re okay with that. I am not; and neither should you [be].”
Chase is being represented by Virginia Beach lawyer Tim Anderson. Court documents filed by Anderson request the court to block the RPV from selecting a convention. “As stated in the Complaint, the Defendant is nominating a method of electing statewide candidates that requires an assembled convention which is in direct violation of Virginia Governor Order E.O. 72 as the number of people required to perform an in-person convention is estimated to be 5,000-10,000 persons under one roof assembled together,” Anderson said in a motion for a temporary injunction.
“Plaintiff is a candidate seeking Republican nomination for Governor.The Defendant has selected a nomination method that prohibits the Plaintiff, and those who support her, from being nominated due to E.O. 72. Further complicating this, is the looming deadline of February 23, 2021, which is the Commonwealth of Virginia’s self-imposed deadline for the Defendant to declare a state run primary as the alternative nomination method,” Anderson said in the motion.
RPV spokesman John March said they wouldn’t comment on ongoing litigation. RPV Chairman Rich Anderson said, “I try as hard as I can to respond to any and every media inquiry, but this is one on which I cannot comment.”
This is the second lawsuit Chase has announced in less than two weeks. On February 1, she announced that she and Tim Anderson were taking aim at the Senate of Virginia, after the Senate voted to censure her. Tim Anderson has been involved in multiple other recent political lawsuits, including against the Governor, against Democratic General Assembly leaders, and was sued by Senator Louise Lucas (D-Portsmouth.)
The Virginia Star publisher John Fredericks said, “The Amanda Chase lawsuit against the Republican Party of Virginia is absolutely frivolous, and her campaign once promising and the front-runner is now turning into the proverbial clown car. The fact that she’s suing a private party over a nomination method that doesn’t particularly meet what she feels gives her the best opportunity to win is an absolute sham.”
Fredericks said that the RPV only has $1,500 and can’t even afford to fix a window on its headquarters, so a lawsuit will force the RPV to spend resources it doesn’t have. He said Chase should be focusing her efforts on signing up Republican voters who will support the party’s General Election candidates, whoever they are.
“I don’t see how this grows the party,” Fredericks said.
Chase is drawing national attention. On Wednesday, The Hill reported, “A Virginia state senator and gubernatorial candidate who has described herself as ‘Trump in heels’ is emerging as a problem for the state’s Republican party as they seek to take the governor’s mansion.”
Chase shared a link to the article on Twitter. In the tweet, Chase suggested that opposition from establishment Virginia Republicans proves she’s on the right track.
She wrote, “I’m clearly not a politician. I am the people’s choice; it shouldn’t surprise anyone that the politicians don’t support me. I’ve advocated for more transparency and accountability.”
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John Fredericks is the publisher and editor-in-chief of The Virginia Star.
He is also a Trump 2020 delegate and the chairman of the Trump Virginia Delegation.