Clark County GOP committee chairs won’t resign after petition

Response from leaders asks petition signers to step down or face removal.

Credit: Laura Rosenberger

Credit: Laura Rosenberger

After more than 20 people who said they were part of the Clark County Republican Party signed a petition demanding the resignation of the leaders of the executive and central committees, the chairpersons responded last week in a letter asking the signers to resign or face votes for their removal from the party.

In a letter dated Wednesday obtained by the News-Sun, Executive Committee Chairperson Laura Rosenberger and Central Committee Chairperson William Lindsey said they would not resign or be replaced.

Twenty-three people, including Rep. Bernie Willis (R-Springfield), signed a document recently indicating they have no confidence in the leadership of Lindsey and Rosenberger as chairpersons of the central committee and of the executive committee. The document alleged a history of breaking the rules, changing scheduled meetings without consent, unlawfully attempting to remove party members, being “hostile” to Republican voters and more.

The letter sent by the chairpersons said the petition and resolution are “steeped in false, misleading and inaccurate information,” and said the creators of the petition harassed party members and “unjustly broadcast their fake story” in the News-Sun, which they said damaged the party’s reputation.

“Their petition and resolution will not be added to any meeting agenda and will never be allowed to come to the floor for a vote as it has been made in bad faith and stands in dishonor,” the letter stated. “If any member tries to bring it up in any meeting, they will immediately be ruled out of order.”

The letter asks the petition organizers to share a written apology to the party and resign in writing. It cites Robert’s Rules of Order — a manual that outlines parliamentary procedure — party bylaws and case law as allowing a vote to expel members who signed the petition but refuse to resign.

“They have perpetrated FRAUD upon the Party and have betrayed the Central and Executive Committees, all Party Officers, and the PUBLIC,” the letter stated.

The petition outlined a resolution to be presented at the next scheduled meetings if Rosenberger and Lindsey do not resign. If passed, it would remove the chairpersons and replace Lindsey with James Stickford, vice chairperson of the central committee, and replace Rosenberger with Jeanette Chu. It also resolves the two members be removed from the executive committee and be replaced by Rhonda Zimmers and Setys Kelly.

The response letter stated the accusations against the chairpersons are “based on lies, rumors, hysteria and greed.” It said Chu, who is a local attorney, would “hand” the executive chairpersonship to Kelly, which is the goal of their “wicked, self-serving plans.” It said a similar situation will happen with Stickford, claiming he will give his position to “one of his traitorous cohorts waiting in line.”

“Attorney Chu’s potential support of and involvement in perpetrating a fraud upon and unincorporated non-profit community organization (the Party) is unethical and unworthy of a Bar Association attorney,” the letter stated. “Attorney Chu should be more than familiar with the implications and ramifications of when a lawyer potentially participates in a fraudulent scheme launched at innocent victims.”

Chu declined to comment on the letter. She did not sign the petition.

The letter compares the attempt to remove them to “Joe Biden taking away the presidency from President Trump.” Claims that the 2020 presidential election was “stolen” have been disproven.

The News-Sun contacted Lindsey, who declined to comment, but Rosenberger emailed statements she said were from both her and Lindsey.

“Leadership cannot understand why local Republicans continue to give credibility to a bad actor like the failed Party treasurer who resigned and who has an extensive police record including theft and passing bad checks in multiple counties,” the statement said. “Luckily, the majority of Party members understand what kind of untrustworthy character this is behind this failed coup attempt and are fed up with her junior high school musical drama.”

Kelly, the former party treasurer, has a history of traffic violations but has never been convicted of passing bad checks, according to court records. She said the situation arose when she filed for bankruptcy but did not leave enough money in her checking account to pay fees. The charges were dismissed after she paid.

Sharon Vallery, a member of both committees and treasurer of the Republican Women’s Club who signed the petition, said in a statement that the letter is an example of “the incompetence” of party leadership.

“We started out this term with some of the most talented and motivated volunteers I’ve ever known. however, the Clark County Republican chair and her inability to perform her duties has led them to resign,” Vallery said. “We lost the August election because of this drama.”

Vallery said Rosenberger is focused on “junior high ‘mean girl’ games” rather than focusing on the November ballot, the 2024 presidential election and appointing a county auditor. She said she will not resign.

Another statement Rosenberger said was from her and Lindsey said Kelly and “her cohorts like State Representative Bernie Willis” have lied and caused issues when Republicans should be coming together to focus on Issues 1 and 2 and supporting Republican candidates.

“The ultimate tragedy of these attacks is that the petition signers are putting their own self-interest and personal vendettas out there instead of working for the good of the Party in Clark County,” the statement read.

Kelly said she resigned from her treasurer position but not from the party. She said she initially supported Rosenberger but “she became tyrannical.”

“I voted for her; I thought she would do a good job,” Kelly said. “I never dreamed that she would lose her mind and do this.”

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