Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Audio: Huizenga Confronted At Controversial, Chaotic Meeting-Brother Named As Faith's Replacement

In a controversial and often times chaotic meeting of the Ottawa County GOP Executive Committee Thursday night, Rep. Bill Huizenga was confronted by multiple individuals  over his involvement in the Ottawa County GOP Convention, causing the meeting to be brought to order by Chairman Adam Tountas after a heated back and forth that saw Huizenga's conservative credentials questioned.

Huizenga said he wants to get to "the bottom of the truth, whether it's "Benghazi, or this," referring to what happened at the Ottawa GOP Convention and subsequent delegate controversy.

Also, the committee rejected on a 14-12 vote to commence an investigation into the multiple irregularities surrounding the Ottawa County Convention and subsequent State Delegate list.

Huizenga's half-brother Jim Barry was named "Interim Executive Director," replacing the recently deposed Faith Steketee…

After Vice-Chair Amanda VanEssen took attendance, Chairman Tountas had guests introduce themselves. Announcements from party figures like Jack Holmes and a vote on the agenda also occurred, as well as some side items. (3:50 to 19:30)

Also- At the offset, after roll was called, State Rep. Amanda Price harped on the lack of a treasurer's report, which was not listed on the agenda, inducing Treasurer Dianna Johnson to tears after she explained she was unable to finish the report because she was kicked out of the office Tuesday, and her mother had recently passed away.
(8:18 to 9:48)

Congressman Huizenga talks about Terri Land at around the 19:30 mark. (19:30-20:20)

Around the 20:45 mark, Chairman Tountas begins to talk about the County Convention and the infamous “Orange Flyer.”

Around the 25:45 mark, Richard Garay, who was elected as an alternate after being elected a precinct delegate, addresses the meeting and shares his experience of driving to Novi only to discover his name was improperly left out of the alternate list submitted to the state party.

Around the 29:30 mark, tensions flare.

“The list that was filed with the State Party bore no resemblance to what was adopted at the end of the convention-this came to my attention Friday night...I had our former Executive Director send me a copy of the list…” Chairman Tountas said.

Treasurer Dianna Johnson fired back:

“I had the list-Adam, you are wrong….you’re trying my patience. Adam you’re lying, Amanda, you’re lying-I know I am going to get kicked out of here, I know that, but I am sitting here as a woman of truth!”

Ray Reifsnyder also spoke up and bickering continued.

Around the 33 minute mark, Vice-Chair Amanda VanEssen explains how she realized issues were at hand.

Around the 40:10 mark, Jeff Fuss says an hour before the Convention, the list prepared by Executive Director Steketee per the slate committee’s recommendation was thrown away because of outside interference…

“Somebody came in that was not a member of that committee…and that list was changed-the order the way the slate committee said everything was gonna be was changed-that crap happens in Washington DC, right Bill? Obama walks over the constitution…Obama does everything  and we don’t stand up and do anything...”

Around 44:20, Slate Committee member Michael Kuras gives his take and makes a motion to commence an investigation… 44:20 to 1:06 is a key part of the meeting…

"Many elected precinct delegates were not on ballots...(the) printed ballots inconsistent with the slate committee's (recommendation) violated State and County (Republican Party) rules," Kuras said. "Precinct delegates were suppose to be given preference-by substituting elected delegates (for non-elected ones on the county convention ballot)...the letter and spirit of the law was violated."

Kuras also said that the County Chair and Vice Chair (Amanda VanEssen) discussed (convention matters) with the Executive Director (Faith Steketee) and "countermanded the decision of the slate committee. The Executive Director had ballots printed consistent with the slate committee's decision but discarded those ballots."

"A step in between the slate committee's recommendation and what was presented at the convention...violates all my senses of due process and rule of law," Kuras said.

County Clerk Roebuck gives his take at the 52:40 mark.

Kuras, Roebuck, Dennis VanDam, and Rep. Huizenga discuss issues, and after Huizenga has an interesting exchange with Kuras around the 1 hour mark, things culminate at:

105:30 when Rep Huizenga says: "I wanna get to the bottom of the truth whether it's Benghazi or this. It might not reflect well on me personally, it might not reflect well on my friend who has become the crux of this...and I wish we weren't having this conversation quite as publicly, especially with the media here...we are getting dangerously close to taking our eye off the ball."

Huizenga is then “booed” by many members of the crowd…

108:50 Executive Committee member Michael Botman takes Huizenga to task, noting that the issues surrounding the convention and problems with the process are the same actions we accuse Barack Obama of perpetrating with Obamacare. No delay was taken to fire the Executive Director, so why delay an investigation? We can investigate on the side-we can do two things at once. Gene Welch is asked if he was contacted for the “reconstruction” he was not.

At 1:12:35  the vote is taken regarding an investigation and it fails 14-12. Huizenga jokingly requests "will someone please take notes on this." 

Some individuals voting no include Joe Haveman, Jim Barry, Joe Bush, Amanda Van Essen, and Dennis Van Dam.

Bill Huizenga is confronted by Deb VanDyk around 1:15:55, and that exchange goes on until 1:18:25.

She decries his involvement in the County Convention and  attacks on “Conservative Americans” to which Huizenga exclaims “I am a Conservative  American!” Multiple members of the crowd then bring up various issues, such as Common Core and  his support for Daniela Garcia in the 90th District State House race…

Around the 1:20 mark, Barb VanderVeen gives an update on the State Convention

At the 1:25 mark, an interesting exchange develops with Vice Chair Amanda VanEssen and Ken David  regarding the “reconstruction” of the delegate list.

At the 1:28:40 mark, Jim Barry, Bill Huizenga’s half brother, is named as the new Executive Director.

Around 1:36:30, Dr. Cal Dykstra calls for the resignation of Chairman Tountas and Vice Chair Van Essen.

Around the 1:41 mark, Jeff Fuss addresses the crowd again…

Other public comment and back and forth ensues with County Commissioner Dennis VanDam, State Rep. Price, County Clerk Roebuck and others to conclude the meeting-along with a few announcements…

Read more about this situation below:

Meekhof Admits Responsibility For Orange Flyer

Firing Squad: WMP Reveals Ottawa GOP Executive Committee's "Faith Vote" 

Ottawa County GOP Chaos: Meekhof + Huizenga Involved? What You Need To Know 

Meekhof's Scapegoat? Ottawa County GOP Executive Director Faith Steketee FIRED

Dirty Deeds: Did Meekhof Chief Of Staff DeVries Vote At Ottawa GOP Convention Despite Living In Kent County?

Arlan Meekhof

1 comment:

  1. Sure looks like a case of delegate rigging to me. If voting delegate were assigned at the county convention then those name should be on the slate at the State convention. The questions I see that need to be answered are who made the changes? Why? And on what or whose authority?

    It's this kind of thing that makes it difficult to persuade voters the GOP is honest and trustworthy.