On June 1-3, the Democratic Party of Virginia will be holding its state convention at George Mason University in Fairfax. This should be a fun convention, with high-profile speakers (I’ve heard possibilities range from Vice President Biden to First Lady Michelle Obama to…possibly even President Obama himself!).
In addition, as Ben Tribbett explains, “2,500 Virginia Democrats will be eligible to vote for their [Democratic National Committee] member… the only position in the party elected directly by the grassroots to serve on our state party steering committee in addition to serving on the national committee.”
Currently, the DNC members from Virginia are: Doris Crouse-Mays, Grindly Johnson, Frank Leone, Alfonso Lopez, Mame Reiley, Lionell Spruill, and Susan Swecker. Of those, four are elected — 2 men (Spruill, Leone) and 2 women (Crouse-Mays, Reiley) — and one of them clearly has to go, as he’s an embarrassment to the Democratic Party, as well as to Virginia. That individual would be Del. Lionell Spruill. Let me explain in detail what I’m talking about here.
1. Although he’s an elected Democrat and also a member of the DNC, Spruill in 2010 refused to support the Democratic nominee for Congress in the 4th CD against Republican incumbent Randy Forbes. Why not? Because…
2. …from that same radio show (the “Hampton Roads Crier”), Spruill made it very clear that he’s a bigot. Here are some excerpts:
Last couple of minutes is the 4th CD race, Randy Forbes is running…and I got a call from a constituent about, will I come out and support [Democratic nominee Wynne] LeGrow…I say to you sir, that in the House of Delegates I got in trouble, I said “I love Jesus,” and this man is an atheist. Now, I’m not going to hell behind politics, I’ll tell you right now. I love Jesus, Randy Forbes loves Jesus, and I asked the man himself; he is an atheist and I will not take him to any Christian church…
I will not endorse a Democrat just because they’re a Democrat…others who are Jews, people who are Muslims, I have taken them to church, but they believe in a higher being. You know, we say Jesus, some say Allah some say whatever you want to call it. But when you get there, how can you justify taking him to church and you let him speak on the pulpit and that man’s an atheist that doesn’t believe in God, that’s all I’m saying…
3. Sadly, this was not an isolated incident. Spruill’s also the guy who said “on the House floor…that he doesn’t like to hear prayers of different religions, ‘especially those of the Muslim faith that I don’t care too much about.‘” Lovely. Just what we need in the Democratic Party’s “leadership” ranks.
4. Spruill is not a loyal Democrat. Evidence, in addition to his refusal to endorse the Democratic nominee against Republican incumbent Randy Forbes in 2010? Check this out, in which Spruill pledges to vote with Republicans “every time” on redistricting, claims that his “favorite delegate is [far-right-wing Republican] John Cosgrove.” Yes, the same John Cosgrove who sponsored legislation that “would have required mothers who had failed to report fetal deaths to the police within 12 hours of the delivery to face a possible misdemeanor sentence.” Not surprisingly, Cosgrove scored a 0% rating from NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia in 2010, in addition to abysmal ratings on pretty much everything else Democrats are supposed to care about. So why on earth is John Cosgrove the “favorite delegate” of DNC member Lionell Spruill? Hmmmmm.
5. Spruill is an embarrassment. Evidence? How about this?
State Del. Lionel Spruill introduced a bill Tuesday to ban displaying replicas of human genitalia on vehicles, calling it a safety issue because it could distract other drivers.
Under his measure, displaying the ornamentation on a motor vehicle would be a misdemeanor punishable by a maximum fine of $250.
…He said he won’t hesitate to bring a set of $24.95 trailer testicles with him for a legislative show-and-tell.
Bottom line: this guy absolutely, positively should NOT – repeat NOT!!! – be on the Democratic National Committee. At the DPVA convention in early June, I urge you to support anyone else but Spruill for this position, and by doing so to remove a disloyal embarrassment and bigot from our party’s leadership ranks. Thank you.