Letter: ‘It is easy for those on the sidelines to throw stones at those of us who are in the arena doing the good work of improving our country’

Clark County Republican Party Chairman Joel Mattila responds to letter to the editor

Editor’s note: Opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are those of the author alone and do not reflect the editorial position of ClarkCountyToday.com

Since its inception, I have supported Clark County Today, even posting links more than once on my personal Facebook page promoting Clark County Today as a fresh alternative to the daily newspaper that dominates our community. I have watched with interest as Clark County Today has gained momentum and have pulled for it to catch on and become a force in local news. I even have a shortcut tab on the top of my web browser to get to your website quickly every morning.

Joel Mattila, Clark County Republican Party chairman
Joel Mattila, Clark County Republican Party chairman

To say I was disappointed to read the letter that you published recently by Mark Moore is a massive understatement. It contains several inaccuracies and I’m discouraged that he was able to use your platform to promote false narratives. I have received several emails from people who were misled by it. I understand that this was a letter to the editor but even then it seems that there should be standards of journalistic integrity that be met.

As one of my favorite presidents, Ronald Reagan, said, “The trouble with our liberal friends is not that they’re ignorant; it’s just that they know so much that just isn’t so.” This is indeed the case with Mr. Moore.

Mr. Moore says I “negotiated an agreement with the three candidates running at that point to challenge JHB in the primary, to support the Trump endorsed candidate”. That is blatantly false. I never negotiated “an agreement”. The truth is that I asked a question at a candidate forum (which, because I respect you, you might remember I invited you, Ken Vance, to help moderate) if they would drop out of the race should former President Donald Trump endorse one of the other candidates in the race.

He goes on to say, “To this point, the chairman has refused to enforce this agreement. He has the political power to do so, he however seems to lack the political will, his inaction in this matter has only empowered JHB.” What political power does he think I wield? Does he think I can somehow just order the other candidates to drop out? That is preposterous on its face. How does Mr. Moore expect me to “enforce” the so-called agreement? The days of the party “boss” are long over and we are all better off for it. The grassroots voters are the ones who should decide elections.

He also says, “the chairman attempted to appoint Jaimie Herrera Beutler’s mother to the voting office of Precinct Committee Officer.” That is totally false. There was no “attempt” made. If I had attempted to appoint her, I would have simply just appointed her. State law simply gives the county chairman the authority to appoint. If the chair wants to appoint, the chair appoints. The chair doesn’t “attempt” and then somehow get thwarted. Our county party bylaws do require that the chair consult or attempt to consult the respective legislative district chair before appointing precinct officers.

Furthermore, Mr. Moore states, “There have been several occasions during his administration where the chairman has ignored the express will of the body…” I would like to know exactly on what occasions I have ignored the will of the body. You allowed him to make that assertion without any examples.

Mr. Moore, who has no official role in the Clark County Republican Party, seems to like to sit on the sidelines and criticize. As someone once said, in the United States today, we have more than our share of nattering nabobs of negativism. I encourage all who read this letter to also read Theodore Roosevelt’s “The Man in the Arena.” It is easy for those on the sidelines to throw stones at those of us who are in the arena doing the good work of improving our country.

Meanwhile, as Mr. Moore peers around the log that is in his own eye to throw stones from the sidelines, the good work of bettering our county and nation goes on. We had a record setting Lincoln Day Dinner fundraiser for our party, recruited an excellent crop of candidates for races this year, are developing a marketing plan to promote the Republican brand, and are poising ourselves to take full advantage of the coming Red Wave in the Fall elections. The future for the Clark County Republican Party is indeed bright.

I look forward to you correcting the record and would hope that you would issue some sort of statement, perhaps apologizing for allowing these kinds of false narratives to be printed.

Thank you,

Joel Mattila, Chair
Clark County Republican Party

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  1. David Gellatly

    Well said Mr Chairman. No one in Clark County that knows this Moore character has anything to say about him but how nasty, creepy, or ignorant of a person he is.

    1. Karen

      As far as I can tell David, you are the only one saying nasty, middle school, things about Mark. Those were your comments last week under Mark’s initial story. Weren’t you told to step down from anything to do with the CCRC?

    2. K.J. Hinton

      Is this a good time to point out that considering your record, both as Chair and with the law, you’re hardly in a position to chastise others?

      No one has anything good to say about you and your drug use while you were County GOP Chair, either. Or your efforts to drive the Party into the ground by failing to show up for court or pay off the fine.

      Silence is golden. You need to remember that more often.

  2. Mary

    Joel, you forgot to mention the petition going around by the Precinct Committee Officers to have you removed. Be careful you are not a legend in your own head.

  3. Mrs. Ann Donnelly

    I fully concur with the main points of our elected Chair’s letter. There is absolutely no way any individual including the Chair could convince or otherwise effect any candidate for office withdrawing from the race. We might wish or advise him/her to do that but that is as far as it can go. Based on my observation, our Chair has acted correctly throughout this primary campaign, treating each candidate fairly and not attempting to interfere. Just yesterday, I heard someone (actually in another state) say “why isn’t the system (of nominating) more rational.”” I explained – this is what free exercise of our political rights looks like. Chairs can neither force people to run nor force them to withdraw. As for appointing PCOs, our processes for doing that have improved and our Chair done more than his share of the improvement. I would like to also add, based on having worked in this arena (thank you, Teddy Roosevelt) for 30 years now (just in Clark County, it’s 60 years in all) that if Candace Herrera became a PCO, I would applaud. Long before Jaime was in high school much less became a Congresswoman, Candace and Armando Herrera were among the strongest and most visible Republicans in our organization. Just ask Linda Smith or anyone else who worked with her landmark grass-roots organization – Candace was always there, and Armando with her. It has always been a privilege to work with the two of them, and if needed, I can get a dozen other people to say the same thing.

    1. K.J. HInton

      Of course you concur. The phrase “establishment hack” comes to mind.

      Chairs CAN implement the will of the PCOs, what ever that will may be, including shutting down the CCRP to anything related to JHB. But this Chair ignores it.

      Naturally, since you disagree with that will, you support those in leadership who also ignore it.

      No amount of misconduct or incompetence could get you to hold Gellatly responsible for his total mismanagement and blundering as party chair when he tried to run it into the ground.

      Why expect anything different from you now?

      Neither Candace or Armando are running for anything putside of, possibly, PCO. Who and what they are does nothing to excuse the clueless idiocy of JHB or Butters, for that matter.

      The PCOs have spoken. You and those like you just didn’t happen to like what they had to say so all of you do your best to ignore it.

      Good luck with that, and I’m proud to say that instantly knowing who and what JHB was/is when she was parachuted in here back in 07, I’ve never voted for her for any position… and never will.

      Because the label “Republican” is meaningless to both of you, as your infamous poison pen letters and support of nonRepublican Marc Boldt a few years back proved. And I never vote based on a brand name.

  4. Karen

    Chairman Joel Mattila presided at an overwhelming vote by the Precinct Committee Officers (PCOs) to censure Congresswoman Jamie Herrera-Beutler for her involvement in and vote to impeach the then former President Donald Trump. When a PCO position in Camas became available in April 2022, Liz Cline, the 1st Vice President of the Women’s Republican Group applied. Chairman Mattila says that according to the bylaws, which have never been available for public review on the CCRC website since Mattila began his reign, he “consults” with the Legislative District Chairs on PCO appointments. According to two chairmen “consult” was Mattila is TELLING them whom he has appointed. Mattila did reject Liz Cline so he could appoint Jamie Herrera-Beutler’s mother (Candice). Because of the optics of that decision, he decided to let the precinct stay unrepresented so, Candice Herrera, could run a campaign. The PCO’s passed a resolution in March 2022 ordering Mattila to send rejection letters of PCO applicants within five days. So, Joel, where are the rejection letters for Liz and Candice? There aren’t any!
    Mattila says the Lincoln Day dinner was so successful. Why have you not produced the receipts? They were requested months ago. The treasurer, Greg Cheney, said he has no idea how much money the CCRC has but told you and the board that you don’t have the money you approved for the expenditures you want for the midterm campaign. Are you prepared to write a personal check for $5,000-$10,000 to cover the overdraft, Cheney says you are creating? Perhaps you plan on just leaving that debt for the next Chairman.
    Mattila implied during the meeting, that he does not have time to do his duties because of outside job and family commitments. It seems Mattila only has time to tell Clark County Today that they owe him and should only publish fluff pieces on him.  According to Mattila’s letter if it weren’t for his Facebook page Clark County Today wouldn’t exist. What an ego! Mattila has been evasive and an embarrassment for the Clark County Republican party. He should step down today.

    1. Mary

      I was at that meeting. My jaw dropped when he approved spending money they don’t have. Did you see Brian Gellatly wave it off as Cheney didn’t need to worry about it? Mattila did say he was too busy to appoint PCO’s. You are spot on.

    2. H.Lee Hanson

      Absolutely, little Hitler and Co. got to go! I do not see but few Joel and Gellatly supporters at the Monthly EX booard meetings. Dumpster Fire’s at best. RESIGN AND TAKE YOUR CREW WITH YOU!!!!!

  5. Mark Engleman

    The local Republican Party has been a COMPLETE DISASTER under the Chairman Mattila.
    Want proof? In a recent meeting of the 18th Legislative District PCOs a resolution of rebuke over Mattila’s leadership was passed with about 90% approval.

    Since Mattila came on the stage he’s been nothing by a showboat political operative moving from one photo op to the next. ABSOLUTELY the wrong type of person to be in ‘leadership’ if the local Republican Party wants to have any purposeful role in helping save America from the seditious forces all about.

  6. Peter Tapio

    Thank you Joel for the insightful summary. Let’s uphold putting the best construction on all that we say and do.

    1. Karen

      As the readers can see the CCRC has been completely divided under Mattila, Gellatly, Cheney, and company. The PCO’s are so fed up by not being heard they barely attend meetings. Hopefully, in December a new group will be voted in, there will be monthly, not quarterly, meetings so more people can be heard and the work of the Republican party can resume.

  7. Carolyn Crain

    So a minority of PCOs want to push their weight around and force the majority of the PCOs in the Clark County Republican Party to fully comply with their demands. The Republican Party is a really big tent. It is not divided into two groups and Joel Mattila didn’t do the dividing. Our last 3 chairman all dealt with divided party issues. Following the RCWs Joel Mattila did as he solely has the legal authority to do. He decided about a single pco seat appointment. Rather than appoint anyone in a serious fissure of far right vs the moderate Republican he chose to simply wait for the voters to decide in August. Now they are attacking him for not bowing to their demands. This is the very type of behavior that has caused so many excellent hardworking volunteers to simply quit volunteering. Bullying is not okay. Calling people names and spreading inaccurate information is not okay. We have an election cycle to work on so I recommend all those bullies stop sitting behind their computers and get out on the streets and do the one thing that has NEVER been knocked down from the point position for winning elections… go work off your frustrations by doorbelling!

    1. K.J. Hinton

      How do you know it’s a minority? Your walkouts to kill a quorum are the stuff of legends.

      Allow this to go to a vote and live with the consequences. As if.

    2. Sean

      You’re absolutely right, Carolyn, and you should know better than anyone, because it is in fact YOU that have been the primary source of division in the party, since the days we censured Marc Boldt.

      YOU are the one who filed petty complaints with the PDC that should have been handled with a simple phone call to the treasurer in an effort to violate the terms of probation and cost the party $30,000+ in additional fines.

      YOU are the one who formed a phony PAC that was deliberately named to confuse voters about who the real, legitimate elected County Republican party was.

      YOU are the one who repeatedly organized walkouts from central committee meetings to try to break quorum when you couldn’t get your way.

      YOU are the one who organized and funded defamatory and libelous letter campaigns against other PCOs during an election cycle, until someone apparently did the same thing back to you, and then you lost your damn mind.

      YOU are the one who organized a separate Republican women’s group because you couldn’t get you and your friends elected to the board of the existing one.

      YOU are the one who drafted the bogus complaint for the incompetent Park Llafet to try to oust chairman Earl Bowerman, who’s only crime was to have beaten you in the race for chairman.

      YOU are the one who sat on a bit of disreputable and embarrassing history concerning a fellow PCO, until such time as leaking it to the press would cause the most public damage to the chairman, instead of quietly notifying the chairman and handling it in house.

      And most Recently YOU are the one who blew the whistle on a candidate to the auditor about residency irregularities, instead, of handling it in house by going to the chairman and the candidate.

      You’re absolutely right, Joel Mattila didn’t do the dividing. It was divided long before he showed up, because YOU did the bulk of it.

      Seek help woman. Stop spraying everyone in range with your mental illness and PTSD.

      1. Awoken Patriots

        I have to say in doing my research over the years of the party, it’s amazing all the things that you have stated above, are the same conclusions I have come up with. her reputation precedes her. There is more information about her but I’ll save that for a later date. But also remember she does not operate by herself, watch her cohorts. They play the game very well, the problem is the constitutional conservative party is not standing up to this Regime. But I have to say they are growing in numbers every hour. Thank you Sean for giving us a history lesson. ! We need to hear more and we need more like you. 

      2. H.Lee Hanson

        one sick puppy as I have been witness to, If we could only get her to work for the lunatic Democrats!

  8. Thomas Schenk

    I read Chairman Mattila’s response to Mark Moore’s June 16 2022, Letter to the Editor, at Clark County Today.

    Mr. Mattila’s first three paragraphs call Clark County Today to task for even publishing Mr. Moore’s letter in the first place. I guess he believes that any voice of dissent from the citizens of Clark County should go through him for approval first to ensure there is no voice but his voice, or no story but his story.

    There are many Precinct Committee Officers (PCOs) who comprise the Clark County Republican Central Committee (CCRCC), who believe Mr. Mattila has behaved, during his tenure as Chair, in a dictatorial way, as evidenced by a petition for his removal that has been circulating for some time.

    The bylaws of the CCRCC are the “rules of the road” in conducting the business of the Clark County Republican Party. They are not optional!

    In Article 10 of the CCRCC bylaws, describe the powers and duties of the County Chair, Section 10.1.11 specifically states the Chair shall…”Act consistently with Board and Central Committee direction as expressed by Standing Rule, Resolution or Motion and by these bylaws”.

    At least two Resolutions have been passed, by the body, at previous quarterly meetings, in an endeavor to require Mr. Mattila to follow a fair procedure for appointing PCOs to vacant precincts ensuring a timely and fair appointment process for those interested in filling a vacant PCO position.

    No one questions Mr. Mattila’s authority to appoint citizens to vacant PCO precincts. However, the RCW makes no mention of the process of appointing someone as a PCO…thus the Resolution by the CCRCC attempting to make the process fair and equitable.

    Section 10.1.13 of Article 10 of the CCRCC bylaws states one of the Chair’s duties is to…”Appoint persons to fill vacancies to the position of PCO, after consultation, or attempted consultation, with the Legislative District (LD) Chair for the district in which the precinct is located, pursuant to RCW 29A.80.031”.

    Mr. Mattila fails this Section of the bylaws too…he has not consulted with at least two of the five LD Chairs or Directors in the appointments of a host of PCOs in their respective Legislative Districts.

    Mr. Mattila is apparently using a “loyalty oath” of sorts, in questioning prospective applicants for vacant PCO slots…these questions are more about loyalty to him than to the Party.

    Mr. Mattila employed this process in rejecting the application of Liz Cline, First Vice President of the Clark County Republican Women, who requested appointment to a vacant PCO position.

    How many other applicants has he questioned in this manner?

    Anyone having years of experience working for business or Government knows how individuals within those entities maintain control…it’s usually accomplished by controlling the flow of information.

    I suggest Mr. Mattila has been very good at doing just that…the PCO appointment process is just one facet of Mr. Mattila’s “I’m in charge” method of operation.

    It is the CCRCC body that is in charge. The CCRCC make motions and passes Resolutions for which the Executive Board is elected and expected to carry out the directives from the body.

    Small wonder Mr. Mattila prefers his method of operation.

      1. Karen

        Tough to argue when the by laws are cited. Has anyone noticed the by laws are not available on the CCRC website? This is so no one can challenge anything the executive committee does. There is no transparency in anything these people do. I pray they do not get reelected again. It would be like giving Biden a second term!

    1. Awoken Patriots

      Mr. Schenk, your highly detailed extensive investigative work should be read by all the Constitutional Conservatives in Clark County. It’s investigative work like this that will create the paradigm shift that CCRP needs. Exposure is the best antibiotic. Thank you Clark County Today!


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