The Loudoun County Young Republicans have launched an effort to recall County Chairwoman Phyllis J. Randall (D-At Large) over her participation in a rally against police violence and racial injustice in Leesburg Sunday, May 31.
The rally, organized in the wake of the latest series of high-profile police killings of black people, including Breonna Taylor in Louisville, KY, and most recently George Floyd in Minneapolis, MN, drew more than a thousand people into downtown Leesburg. Although almost all wore masks, social distancing was impossible in the tightly-packed streets courthouse green.
By participating and speaking at the rally, the group alleges, Randall violated their 14th Amendment right to equal treatment under the law, since the governor’s orders closing or limiting businesses and public gatherings were still in place.
Caroline Maiorana, chairwoman of the Loudoun County Young Republicans, argued Randall should have lifted those restrictions, a decision made by Gov. Ralph Northam and something Randall, as a local supervisor, has no authority to do.
“Instead of first lifting the ban on gatherings or allowing businesses to reopen, Chair Randall believes she is above the law,” Maiorana stated. “By destroying people’s businesses and livelihoods in the name of public safety, then violating her own order for political gain, Chair Randall has demonstrated disregard for both public safety and the law.”
“The law must apply equally to all citizens of Loudoun County. Phyllis Randall not only violated the 14th Amendment and our right to equal treatment under the laws, but also the very executive decrees she has been supporting for months,” stated Arash Ebrahimi, Vice Chair of the Loudoun County Young Republicans. “By leading a gathering of over 1,500 people after shutting down Loudoun’s economy and banning gatherings of over 10 people, Chair Randall is the epitome of hypocrisy. We absolutely support the right of all citizens to assemble peacefully to address government tyranny. Believing she is above the law, Chair Randall led this gathering without first allowing other citizens to exercise the same rights.”
Virginia law allows for the removal of an elected official from office through a petition to the Circuit Court, which then decides whether the official should be removed. Officials may be removed for “neglect of duty, misuse of office, or incompetence in the performance of duties when that neglect of duty, misuse of office, or incompetence in the performance of duties has a material adverse effect upon the conduct of the office,” or after conviction for selling illegal drugs, committing a hate crime or various sex offenses.
To bring that petition to the Supreme Court, the Young Republicans must gather a number of signatures from people living in Loudoun that is at least 10 percent the number of people who voted in the last election for county chair. With 111,569 votes cast for county chair in 2019, that means they must gather 11,157 signatures.
The Loudoun County Young Republicans webpage describes the organization as “a group of young conservatives in Virginia between ages 18 – 40.” The petition is on its website.
A 2016 Loudoun Now photo of Randall featured above the petition on the Young Republicans website is used uncredited and without permission and has been darkened from the original.