This will be my last report as your State Committeewoman in our Collier County Republican Executive Committee newsletter. It has been a privilege to serve all Republicans in Collier County as your State Committeewoman and to serve with a great CCREC Board that has worked as a team focused on Collier County. I remain committed to growing our Republican ranks with the next generations of conservative voters and to increasing the number of conservative women running for office, being awarded appointments, and taking leadership roles in the Republican party on campaigns. Most importantly, I remain committed to keeping Collier County the best place to be a Republican. Please feel free to continue to reach out to me anytime if I can be of assistance.
As we look ahead, we need to elect leaders who understand the importance of working as a team and who treat everyone with respect and dignity. Too many in our ranks have lost sight of the importance of civility in the future of our county and our country. With COVID touching everyone with sickness, job loss, and anxiety, simple actions have an even greater positive – or negative impact. Our parents attempted to instill in us lessons to help us develop positive relationships in our lives. We were all told ‘don’t scream’ and ‘don’t use 4 letters words.’ Moving past 2020, we must heed the importance of these lessons for the Republican Party to succeed here in Collier County, in Florida, and across the country.
During the recent campaign, many candidates, including myself, were attacked as ‘RINO’s.’ Even my name, Face, was capitalized and questioned. In the 1740’s, my great-great-great grandfather moved here from Germany where he had been persecuted as a Lutheran minister. He changed his name from German to the English ‘Face’ to sever his ties to Germany. Using RINO and FACE to smear my reputation signifies a much deeper problem at our core. When we choose to degrade individuals using 4-letter capitalized words, we send a clear message that we don’t want them. It is pure hypocrisy to then expect them to vote for our Republican candidates.
The Democrats love to see us ‘eat our own’ with primary ads calling our candidates RINO’s. What is a RINO? I always believed a RINO was someone who was registered as a Democrat and changed their registration to Republican to win in a conservative district. Over time, it grew to include Republican officials who vote ‘like’ Democrats. It has now become a convenient word to use in a derogatory manner to attack any Republican whom the attacker does not like or does not agree with 100%. A ‘digital blog’ deemed me a RINO with a photo of two rhinoceroses. Yet, I have been a registered Republican for 50 years; actively supported Republican candidates; and always backed our Republican nominees in the General Election. These types of senseless attacks on candidates and elected officials drive away voters, volunteers, and donors. Use of the term RINO screams of Republican fracture at a time when we must unify. If we want to keep on winning, we need to think seriously about the eliminating the term RINO from our vocabulary permanently.
To win in 2022 and 2024, we must return to being civil and inclusive. We are at a turning point when, as Republicans, we need to do some serious soul-searching and think carefully about those whom we have driven away in the excitement of winning. We need their support and their votes. In this time of COVID, it is the small acts of kindness that can make a huge difference that voters will remember. Each of us has a choice when we hear the term RINO used to degrade elected Republican officials, Republican candidates, or any Republican. We must speak up to stop the message that ‘we don’t want you’ by stopping the bullying within our ranks using ‘name calling’ with RINO and other 4-letter capitalized words. We know grassroots person-to-person contact works. I urge you to join me to become a part of a Republican grassroots effort to stop the name calling and to welcome those who agree with us at least 80% as Republicans.