Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Attendees at Haskell County GOP meeting rebuke Boggs for mistruths (plus my take)

Among the runoff elections being held on August 25th is the GOP contest in State Senate District 7 between incumbent Larry Boggs and challenger Warren Hamilton. Hamilton is campaigning as a strong conservative and an ardent abolitionist, believing that Oklahoma ought to make a stand for the unborn and stop regulating abortion and treat it as the murder of innocent human life that it truly is.

Abolition of abortion has been somewhat of a flashpoint in the SD7 race, as Sen. Boggs did not vote to hear Senate Bill 13 (the abolition bill) on the Senate floor, which was not brought up for an actual hearing because 30 Republicans and 8 Democrats voted to table while only 4 Republicans voted to hear the bill. Boggs missed the vote because he was not in the chamber at the time (allegedly having a conversation outside in the rotunda, I believe).

There was a meeting of the Haskell County Republicans on July 14th that ended in some fireworks, with Sen. Boggs coming rather... unhinged and getting into a heated argument with some abolitionist supporters of Hamilton's, to the point that Boggs had to be physically restrained.

The following cartoon pretty accurately sums up Boggs' demeanor as shown in multiple videos:

After the meeting, both sides came out with their story of what went down (including some absolute garbage from one camp, as I detail further down). Some days later, a group of Haskell County Republicans ran the following statement as an advertisement in newspapers throughout SD7, specifically not endorsing any candidate, but correcting what they deemed to be serious mistruths and efforts by one candidate about what went on that night.

I'll post my thoughts on the whole saga below this. There's some stuff that needs to be said about individuals on both ends of the kerfluffle.

(click here to view full size)
We Were There! 
Haskell County GOP Meeting
July 14th, 2020

We are members of the Haskell County GOP and we the under sign were all in attendance of the meeting held at the Haskell County GOP Office in Stigler, Ok.

If you happened to read the Stigler News Sentinel, or Latimer County News-Tribune, and you have read the campaign ad for Larry Boggs then we really hope that you will take the time to read this rebuke of what was printed.

About the only truth contained in his ad was his name, the date of the runoff and the general election. The GOP meeting that the ad refers to was held at the Stigler GOP Office on Main and Broadway. If you go to the Haskell County Oklahoma GOP Facebook page which is public, you will find the live feed that is unedited.

We were in attendance and we have reviewed what transpired during the meeting, to be sure that none of us missed anything for a lot of information was presented that evening.

Mr. Boggs ad claimed that 30 people were bused in from Guthrie Oklahoma, at the expense of the Hamilton Campaign. As we stated before, we were in attendance and there may have been 30 men and women total in the meeting we feel his statement is FALSE!

To prove our point the following is a breakdown of guests and party officials at the meeting on July 14th 2020:
  • 3 - Haskell County Republican Executives Glenda Allen, Chairwoman of Haskell County GOP. Don Holt, Vice Chair of Haskell County GOP. Karen Holt, Secretary of Haskell County GOP. 
  • 3 - State Senators were in attendance.
    Dewayne Pemberton State Senator District 3
    Joseph Silk State Senator District 5
    Larry Boggs State Senator District 7. 
  • 1 - State Representative Randy Randleman 
  • 3- Members of Ekklesia of Oklahoma
    Daniel Navejas
    Kyle Brown
    Joshua Karman
  • 2 - Runoff Challenger for District 7 Warren Hamilton and his wife Sherrie Hamilton
  • 1 - Campaign Manager for Larry Boggs from Durant, Ok Conner Alford
  • 3 - Guests from Free the States.
    James Simberman
    Sam Riley
    Michael Lockwood 
  • 2 - Guests from Pittsburg County Republican Party. We don’t know their names. 
  • 3 - Members of Senator Silk’s family his father, mother, and his sister. 
Well that’s 18 men and women in attendance that are not members of the Haskell County GOP, when you add the county GOP officers it jumps to 21 That we were able to identify as the ones we know of that were there. Which is over half of those in the meeting.

The meeting itself was calm and informative with everyone that participated in what was being discussed. More on that later. The topic of the evening was “The Real Truth about SB 13 will be presented”. (Haskell County Oklahoma GOP Page Glenda Allen July 11th 2020.) What was odd about the topic is that she was asked directly who the presenter was going to be and refused to give out who it would be. So when Warren Hamilton reached out to the author of the bill and asked if he was coming to the meeting he was unaware and was immediately invited him to attend the meeting. Without Senator Silk’s input to the discussion it would have been like watching main stream media only giving one side of a story. In which in any forum is not acceptable. As we stated earlier the discussion was informative, cordial, and respectful for all who presented their positions, until Mr. Boggs chose to speak. Every time he spoke he got louder, repeating the same question and actually called Senator Silk a liar!

Mr. Boggs ad stated that he was surrounded by a mob, which is quite interesting in itself. Mr. Boggs at one point in the meeting stood up and was yelling at one of the actual members of the Haskell County Republicans and was told by Glenda Allen to sit down.

Once the meeting was adjourned, it was Mr. Boggs who stood up first and he approached the people he claimed “surrounded him”. When it was actually Mr. Boggs and Glenda Allen that were yelling. The ad claims Antifa and Westboro Baptist Church tactics were used, which ironically is farthest from the truth. No one was throwing bricks, walls were not spray painted, buildings were not destroyed nor were there anyone picketing with signs condemning anyone’s soul.

What we witnessed was people trying to have a conversation and Mr. Boggs losing his temper. Now we want to be clear, we could care less about Mr. Boggs and him calling another “outside” that is on him alone. What we care about is the truth and clearly his campaign is not about sharing the truth. We all agree that instead of campaigning on the issues it’s about what lies can he say or print about another candidate.

Let it be known as Registered Haskell County Republicans that did attend this meeting at the GOP Office we were embarrassed how the meeting was handled by party leadership. Glenda Allen treated Senator Silk with disrespect. Senator Silk was genuine, presented his stance with professionalism, and was respectful to all in the room.

Glenda Allen was biased before, during and after the meeting. Don’t believe the lies that were allowed to be placed in the papers. The unedited videos tell the true story of the events of that day.

We, the undersigned Republican members of Haskell County, who were in attendance approved this ad to REBUKE Mr. Boggs ad:

Jeff Upton
Nikki Upton
Traci Shearwood
Cade Shearwood
Macey Shearwood
Ron Boprie
Lou Ann Easton

This ad was paid for by Republican citizens of Haskell County, Oklahoma. This is NOT an endorsement of any candidate we only want the truth to be told.

Video from Conner Alford of the Boggs’ campaigns perspective
Video from Haskell County GOP’s live stream
The ad in question was paid for by Ron Boprie and Lou Ann Easton, and ran in several smaller newspapers within the district, but was not allowed by the McAlester News-Capital, which has also refused to run several ads by the Hamilton campaign -- one in particular because it called mentioned "the LGBT agenda" and called abortion "murder" and "pure evil".

Alright, so here's my take on the main actors in the action.

CAME AWAY LOOKING BAD

  • Larry Boggs
My impression after skimming through the full video of the meeting, he's in a heated, chip-on-the-shoulder mood from the very first time he speaks. He raises his voice numerous times, bordering on yelling. At one point, he's in a brief argument with a woman over something he says he didn't say, and stands up while asking her if she's got a recording she can pull out - a portent of what was to come. He's actually told to sit back down.

Footage from after the meeting shows Boggs come absolutely unglued. His behavior on tape is unbecoming of a state legislator. He gets in a verbal altercation with one Daniel Navejas, and has to be physically restrained by his campaign manager to keep from getting in Navejas' face, though it certainly looks like Navejas and those standing around got a faceful of vociferous spit as Boggs angrily said "screw you", and "if you don't like it, you step outside, and you square right up". It was a terrible look for Boggs, unless he is aiming for the unhinged bully-who-never-grew-up impression.

Which brings me to this. Larry Boggs is a full-on, flat-out, bald-faced liar. He told the McAlester News-Capital "I said let's go outside and talk without disturbing this meeting," and "All I said was 'let's go outside and talk.' There was so much noise in there." Later, in a press release, Boggs says "Where I come from, offering to 'take it outside' is an invitation to stand down". What in the world??

I get sent a lot of press releases by organizations and campaigns. The Soviet-style propaganda that Boggs sent out about the Haskell County GOP meeting was so starkly different than the facts of his angry outburst on film that I declined to post any of them.

Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch recently stated in a dissenting opinion that "[T]here is no world in which the Constitution permits Nevada to favor Caesars Palace over Calvary Chapel." I'll copy that phrase. There is no world in which "if you don't like it, you step outside, and you square right up", said while spitting mad, is an invitation to stand down and calmly discuss things outside. The absolute, unmitigated gall to spin things like that is a tremendously terrible reflection on Boggs' character. What that tells me is that he will lie his way to victory if at all possible.... and that truly is an awful shame.

If I was a voter in State Senate District 7, his efforts to blatantly lie about his inexcusable actions would disqualify him from receiving my vote.

  • Daniel Navejas
Came across as an annoying, smug twerp. He actually filed a police report (insert massive facepalm) over the interaction with Boggs, which was.... very dumb and downright frivolous. His repetitious "you need to repent" comments to an already visibly agitated Boggs contributed to (but does not excuse, obviously) the Senator's explosive reaction. Say it once, maybe twice, but don't be the kid that keeps saying "uh-huh" when the other kid is saying "nuh-uh".

Filing a frivolous police report is tantamount to the kid who starts a fight and then runs to the teacher to complain that they got hit. My advice to Hamilton would be to ask Navejas to stay away. That's just my honest, blunt reaction to the footage.

CAME AWAY LOOKING GOOD

  • State Sen. Joseph Silk
In stark contrast to the agitated Boggs, Silk was calm throughout the meeting as he explained and defended SB13 against some of the arguments being brought against it by Boggs and others at the meeting. It truly is a shame that Silk opted to not run for reelection to the state senate.

  • Conner Alford
Despite his smaller size, he made a valiant and successful effort at keeping his boss from coming to physical blows.

  • Warren Hamilton
Seems that Hamilton saw where things were headed, and out of apparent respect and concern for all involved can be seen suggesting to Alford that he take Boggs out before anything unfortunate happened... which Alford tried to do, but Boggs turned around and made the effort to lunge at Navejas.

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