The GRA, Pat Robertson, and the Perpetual Cuckoo’s Nest

Many activists in the 21st century Georgia GOP have been privy to a seemingly endless cycle of attempted takeovers by empassioned newcomers deadset on throwing out the squishy “establisment” Republicans (RINOs).

The most recent kerfuffle heading into the state convention in Columbus involves two proposed rules changes aimed at absolute ideological purity. The changes were put forth by a “new” (we’ll come back to that) shadow party, figure-headed by a long time GOP agitator from Dekalb, and directed, for all intents and purposes, by a prominent family from the Columbus area whose last name might nip at your nose.

The Georgia Republican Assembly purports to be modeled after an organization created by Ronald Reagan in California, at a time when the state’s party was actually in danger of being taken over by communist ideology.

The current GRA here in Georgia however, serves more as a vehicle for ideological isolationists and purity police, whose foundational principle seems to be “agree with us completely or get out.”

Virtually anyone involved in the Georgia GOP for the last decade is likely familiar with the family at the core of the constant turbulence and embarrassing press plaguing the organization.

What most people likely don’t realize, including myself until very recently, is that same family has been at the heart of party debacles and chaos dating at least back to 1988. At the State Convention that year the patriarch of the nose-nipping clan was the state Director for failed Presidential candidate Pat Robertson’s campaign in Georgia.

Robertson, having bowed out after losing to George H.W. Bush, including in Georgia, was not a contender for the nomination, but not letting reality or rules stand in their way, the aforementioned patriarch and his band of supporters, through court order and brut force, took over the convention to insert their own slate of delegates to the RNC.

Here are couple exceprts from an Associated Press article* about the convention:

“Georgia’s Republican convention adjourned in chaos Saturday after supporters of Pat Robertson shouted down speakers and promised to hold their own meeting to pick delegates to the GOP national convention.”


“The business of this convention cannot proceed,” said John Stuckey, chairman of the state Republican Party. “The 18 delegates at-large cannot be elected.”

And this jewel, which could be taken straight from an AJC article covering more recent conventions, and hopefully does not serve as an omen for 2024:

“Supporters of the religious broadcaster, who suspended his bid for the Republican nomination on May 11, marched through the convention hall and shouted down speakers on Friday. They won a court order Saturday ordering the admission of delegates previously denied because of missed deadlines for filing paper work.”

So… What’s the point of this post you may ask? Simply to say this; It seems to me that Randle McMurphy got himself into the asylum years ago, but is now identifying as Nurse Ratched. If you don’t get the reference let’s just say the lunatics are running the asylum.


*These are my thoughts and opinons only.

2 Replies to “The GRA, Pat Robertson, and the Perpetual Cuckoo’s Nest”

  1. Silence’s column, talking about the 1988 GAGOP Albany convention, got me looking for stuff on John Stuckey this weekend. He was from Coweta County in ’88, and the state GOP Chairman presiding over the Albany convention.

    I found this 2017 UGA Russell library interview with Stuckey –

    It’s Stuckey history, and early (early-modern) Georgia GOP history, divvied up. The convention discussion is about midway down the list (33:55).

    Worth the 11 minute watch. Strong feelings 30 years later, and relevant today.

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