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Bartlesville, OK
July 10, 2023

By Bart Willbee

Washington County GOP Vice Chairman Sues Everyone!

Within 24 hours of his confirmation as the Vice Chairman of the Washington County Republican Party, filling the vacancy left by the removal of former Vice Chairman Juli Merciez, Tom Stearman filed suit in Nowata County Court against everyone! “Scorch the earth,” Stearman shouted, striding angrily down the courthouse steps with the clerk’s stamp still damp on the pleading crumpled in his upraised fist!

In a hastily called press conference, with only photographer Dandy Dousset and your humble reporter present (the Examiner-Enterprise reportedly forbade attendance by their own photographer-turned-reporter on the grounds that County GOP shenanigans just don’t draw the desired engagement), Stearman gripped the mic fiercely and leaned forward.

“This should never have happened! It took a whole lot of vote-counting acrobatics, not to mention $1800 worth of biscuits and gravy, at the County Convention to get Merciez ‘elected’ in the first place! Now the new ‘establishment’ thinks they can just wave a magic wand to seat ME in there as Vice Chairman anyway? They have another think coming!”

Stearman’s cease-and-desist pleading personally names as defendants all Executive Committee members, all County Committee members, the former Vice Chairman and State Committeeman since removed, and the venue owner. The document also names one Becky Whoseman as co-plaintiff, though nobody can recall ever seeing her. “She wanted to be State Committeeman, but is still waiting for the County Committee to get its rear in gear,” Stearman replied to this reporter’s question.

“If Whoseman wants to be State Committeeman, why doesn’t she appear at any County GOP meetings?”

Stearman looked over this reporter’s head and pretended to call on a different reporter, though no other reporter was actually present.

Term-limited former State Representative Earl Sears was also on the courthouse steps, and elbowed his way to the microphone to ask (and answer) every other question. To all appearances Sears thought this was his own press conference! “I move that the County GOP should have to pay Vice Chairman Stearman’s legal expenses arising from this lawsuit,” Sears intoned impressively. “I probably won’t even get a second, but it doesn’t matter that this lawsuit is frivolous and unnecessary. Fraudulent, even!”

A member of the small, gathering audience objected that, as Stearman’s own lawsuit caused the legal expense in the first place, it could not possibly be fair to require the defendants to pay his legal fees, given that the defendants obviously did NOT have the same choice! Deftly maneuvering his hips to block out three standers-by to hog the microphone yet again, Sears tilted his head back to declare in a piercing tenor, “Because they covered the Committee members’ costs, it is only fair that the Washington County GOP should pay Stearman’s costs! They can’t pay one but not the other.” When asked whether the GOP should also pay Whoseman’s legal fees, Earl looked confused. “Whose fees?”

Analysis by the experienced Bartlesville Bee legal staff notes a number of significant anomalies with the case. The first, obviously, revolves around what jurisdiction Nowata courts might have over a Washington County case! Research reveals that too many Washington County judges are also Hillcrest Country Club members with many of the defendants. That and the centuries-old intermarried caste of Bartlesville established families likely accounts for the perplexing choice of jurisdiction. But as the subject of this cease-and-desist case is the internal deliberations of a private organization, the case likely is going nowhere, irrespective of venue. “A snowball’s chance on a July Bartlesville sidewalk,” is how the Bartlesville Bee’s senior analyst phrased it.

File Photo

(File Photo)

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The Bartlesville Bee is Bartlesville’s premier source of satire news. Committed to making Bartlesville the most entertained city in Oklahoma, the Bee stings the community with the most uproarious stories, sprinkled with humor, wit, and truth.

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Bart Willbee

Bart Willbee, a native of Bartlesville, Oklahoma, Editor-in-Chief of Bartlesville Bee, a satire website.

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