Thursday, September 24, 2020

Defrocked Democrat John Deberry Stars at GOP Event

Posted By on Thu, Sep 24, 2020 at 3:01 PM

click to enlarge DeBerry with Republican well-wishers - CONNIE MCCARTER
  • Connie McCarter
  • DeBerry with Republican well-wishers

It isn’t often in an election year that a prominent declared Democrat becomes the star at an official Republican event, but that’s what happened this week when John DeBerry headed the card at a Republican rally at local GOP headquarters.

It should be remembered, of course, that DeBerry, who has represented state House District 90 in the legislature for 26 years, was formally booted off the party ballot earlier this year by the state Democratic executive committee. His offense? Years of alleged over-coziness with Republicans, especially in support of their positions on social issues such as abortion.

There is no great surprise, therefore, that DeBerry’s cause would have been taken up by Republicans. He is running for reelection as an independent, but is regarded as something of a lion by the GOP.

Hence his getting top billing at a candidate event of the East Shelby Republican Club Tuesday night. Others appearing included Patricia Possel, the party’s nominee in House District 96 and Rob White, running in District 86.

In his remarks, DeBerry clung to the identity of independent, explaining the background of his status this way: “I'm running as an independent not because the folks in my district didn't qualify me to run. They did. Not because they hadn't voted for me 13 times. They had. Not because they didn't know what I was saying before. They've known that since 1995. But because ... a group of people, many of whom have never set foot in District 90 in their lives, sat in a zoom meeting in the middle of a pandemic, [and] with 48 hours notice ... removed a 26-year-incumbent from the ballot.”

He enlarged upon that point while engaging in some media-bashing: “It's not whether or not you are Democrat or Republican, or whether you like the president or you like the challenger, but what the media has been able to do is take our eyes off the prize, what is important, the principles that are important, that made this nation in the first place — the principles that made us great, that gave us a great economy, that gave us freedom.”

Elaborating further, he underscored his anti-abortion position: “The media has been able to make us stupid, to the extent that we're not looking at what's really important. What's important. What's important is whether or not we protect life, whether an unborn child has the constitutional right to be born to take his or her first breath as a human being. I've always wondered how a human male and a human female can get together and have something that is not human.”

And, without specifying anybody in particular, DeBerry warned of candidates who held social and political ideas antithetical to his own. “What do these people stand for?” he asked. “What do they stand for? Are they murdering babies? Are they destroying the institution of marriage? Are they allowing those who refuse to obey the law to have more protection of the law than everybody else? Are they removing our First and Second Amendment rights?”

Clearly, DeBerry, a businessman (marketing, advertising, and public relations) and minister, is hopeful of compensating for his lack of a party label on November 3rd by putting together votes from independents and Republicans, in addition to those Democrats who remain loyal to him. He is opposed by Democratic nominee Torrey Harris, who is counting on the support of the party faithful.

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