Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Mike Faulk Resigns as First Vice-Chairman

I received this letter from Mike Faulk:

November 20, 2006

Dear Cecile:

With mixed emotions I tender my resignation as First Vice-Chairman of the Republican Party in Hawkins County, Tennessee.

I am grateful to the members of the party who saw fit during the last four years to allow me to serve them as a party officer. To have served with you and the other officers has been my honor.

In spite of a rough year for Republicans across the country, local results have been pretty darn good. The GOP held the same number of courthouse offices, state offices, and federal offices. I'm happy to have assisted you in achieving those results.

Republican candidates in Hawkins County benefited from more meetings and forums than ever before held. The 2006 Lincoln Day Dinner had a record crowd. The headquarters was open and staffed more months than any previous election. And we moved the local party into the 21st century with the new party website which has been visited hundreds and hundreds of times by interested citizens, voters and candidates. Thank you and members of the party for letting me be a part of it all.

My whole adult life I've tried with varying degrees of success to follow principles taught by mom and dad. One such principle was: "finish what you start". This resignation violates that principle. But there is a second principle that causes me to violate the first. I took an oath to follow the Constitution and By-laws of the Local Republican Party. So long as I am an officer of the party, under those rules I'm duty bound to remain neutral in Republican primary races - no matter what a candidate does or says.

In the most recent U. S. Senate race, at one time or another, the supporters of each of the three candidates thought I was promoting one of the other candidates. The fact of the matter is I attended each candidates events, I gave each a little money, and I did what I could to provide the assistance each asked; but, none of the three will find a single solitary soul who'll say I tried to persuade them to vote for anyone of the three. And, I told each one I'd go to bat for the winner. That's just exactly what I did.

It was 36 years ago that our friend, Bill Jenkins, as the only Republican since Reconstruction, served as Speaker of the Tennessee House of Representatives. Literally hundreds and thousands of hours and dollars have been spent by Republicans volunteers all across our state to regain control over one or both of the houses of the Tennessee General Assembly. We regained control of the Senate chamber two years ago and held that majority this election.

Regretfully, selfishly, and disrespectfully, one of our own forgot his roots, forgot who sent him to Nashville, and gave the Lt. Governorship to our competitors. While there's too much partisanship at all levels of government, the one time and place for partisanship is in the selection of the leader of the Senate - the Lt. Governor -the person first in line should something happen to the Governor.

Given these events within our own party in the State Senate since this most recent election day, I can no longer maintain neutrality in a race to come.

The time is here, unfortunately this soon after the 2006 election, to begin the planning for 2008 elections. Therefore, I resign my post as First Vice-Chairman effective upon the selection of my successor.

Your friend,

Mike Faulk


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