OCGOP "Freedom" does not appear
to extend to all of its members.
Hasn't the OCGOP learned anything?
Tonight is the April Central Committee meeting and it is sure to be a boisterous and contentious evening.
Deviating from his usual modus operandi, OC Chairman Scott Baugh stepped in front of the camera over the weekend to call for the ousting of Fullerton resident and Committee member Marilyn Davenport for an email which he says "drips of racism."
Instead of tackling the issue in-house Baugh was seen on several local TV stations with the standard politically correct rhetoric not normally found in the OC Republican Party's higher ranks.
Davenport's email which started the latest OCGOP turmoil shows a picture of President Obama superimposed on a chimpanzee in what some believe to be a racist image. Keeping it in perspective, Davenport thought the image was amusing given the caption, "Now you know why no birth certificate." She also believes there is a double standard within the media and certain political circles which supports political cartoons as free speech so long as it doesn't include Obama. Davenport believes the email sent to a small circle of "friends" has been blown out of proportion by a GOP insider. After all, not every depiction of a monkey implies racism. President Bush was the figure superimposed on the face of a monkey just a little more than two years ago.
Davenport may not be alone in her lack of racial cognition. In an online poll on KFIAM640.com, 58% said the image sent by Davenport was not racist while 75% felt a similar image of Bush was not racist.
Several sources close to the story have told me the email was "leaked" to the OC Weakly through the Schroeder/Fleischman camp as reprisal for the continued spat between Assemblyman Chris Norby and former State Senator Dick Ackerman.
Historically, certain OCGOP elements have tried in vein to control the 72nd Assembly District. I have heard that Jon Fleischman was behind the Mike Duvall outing (not that Duvall's actions were acceptable). Later, Norby and Linda Ackerman duked it out for control of Duvall's 72nd Assembly seat. Now this.
Anyone that has been forced to sit through "sensitivity training" knows that the image in the email could and likely would be considered racist. My guess is that Davenport has never had to sit through sensitivity training and simply didn't recognize the racist overtones of depicting an African-American man, although as Davenport notes he's half Caucasian, as an ape.
Now with Baugh choosing to play this out in the media it is reasonable to assume that the 72nd AD divide with the rank and file OCGOP will continue to grow. For the past few years the 72nd AD has grown to be much more free-thinking than some OCGOP insiders would like. Further agitating certain factions, the Executive Committee of the OCGOP has two women from the 72nd AD as well as Mrs. Deborah Pauly from the 60th AD. Odd how those targeted lately were Caucasian women in a position of power within the OCGOP... It's only a matter of time before more North Orange County conservatives come under fire for standing up to the "Repuglicans".
Sometime between Saturday and Sunday Baugh was notified that the Central Committee's by-laws did not authorize him to remove an unruly or politically-incorrect elected member. As of late Sunday evening Baugh was on TV admitting he had no authority to remove an elected official but he hoped to put pressure on her to resign.
Davenport has refused to resign.
Tonight, the Central Committee will meet and, assuming the by-laws allow for a last minute change to the agenda, take up the matter for discussion.