CHARLESTON, W. Va. (WOWK) – Ousted Wood County Republican Chairman Rob Cornelius will sue the Secretary of State’s office. Cornelius was removed as county chairman by State Party Chair Melody Potter. Cornelius has been a harsh critic of Potter, as well as Governor Jim Justice who was elected as a Democrat and then switched to the Republican Party. Cornelius says being removed as county chairman is a violation of election laws.
“Well, it’s incredibly egregious. She’s attempting to nullify multiple elections. One held at the ballot box and one held in the sanctity of our Wood County committee by people who were all elected. Quite clearly this is an individual, out-of-county, claiming to have the authority to nullify an election. That’s dangerous. A federal election,” said Rob Cornelius, former Wood Co. Republican Chairman.
But there are bigger concerns than just one county chairmanship. A longtime political consultant says the Melody Potter feud could do long-term damage to the Republican Party.
“I mean I think her ability to raise money, her ability to mobilize. That’s what you look at the chair of the party to do. And to the degree that she is involved with all these spats it becomes a problem for her,” said Tom Susman, of TSG Consulting.
Potter, who is also embroiled in disputes with Kanawha and Harrison County Republicans, declined our request for comment.
There are plenty of rank and file Republicans that hope this feud gets solved soon. The Primary Election is now less than ten months away.