Constitution Party leader seeks to build honest political party

Published 10:16 am Wednesday, April 25, 2018

[Editor’s note: The forum to which John Bloom references below took place on Saturday afternoon in New Mt. Zion Missionary Baptist Church. The newspaper had not been formally notified in time by the organizer or participants.]

I’d like to thank The Tidewater News for reporting on the Constitution Party’s effort to build a new political party in Franklin City. I was contacted about two months ago by a Mr. Thomas Councill Jr., who asked if I could help alleviate the burden of the high electricity rates and start a local unit for the Constitution Party, of which I agreed and visited Franklin City twice.

After what transpired this past weekend I have come to the conclusion that Mr. Councill used me and the Constitution Party of Virginia as a tool to harm Mr. Greg McLemore’s campaign. During the meeting I mentioned that I plan on building an honest political party, and asked those present how does one build an honest political party, and it didn’t take any time before someone said, “with honest people.” I also mentioned that the Constitution Party will not engage in any character assassinations, as I watched both Chesapeake Pastor E.W. Jackson and Senator Ted Cruz’ respective campaigns destroyed that way. Mr. Councill told me that reference was directed at him, and it was, but also it was a principle of the political party I am building.

Just before the meeting began, the pastor of New Mt. Zion Missionary Baptist Church spoke to me and told me that he did not want the meeting turning into a “Greg McLemore” rally, and I promised him that would not happen and I would ensure that all candidates, including Mr. McLemore, would stay on the subject of the electricity rates. I did have to steer both Mr. McLemore and his opponent, Ms. Andrea Hall-Leonard, twice.

I deliberately made the format non-confrontational. Each candidate would present their plan to alleviate the financial burden on all the residents of Franklin City due to the outrageous electricity rates.

Mr. Councill was not happy with that and asked me would they have the opportunity to ask the candidates questions and I told him “No!” The meeting itself went well, as I allowed all candidates all the time they needed to speak and present their plans. Then while I was removing the CPV banner, Mr. Councill got into Mr. McLemore’s face and called him a “fraud and liar.” I immediately told them to take it out of the sanctuary.

After I left I sent a message to Mr. Councill asking him to not be so aggressive to Mr. McLemore. Then I received another poisoned pen letter not only attacking Mr. McLemore, but [also] accusing Mr. McLemore of “sabotaging” the event. That was a lie. It was the actions of Mr. Councill that were unwarranted. It became clear to me that there is so much hatred in Mr. Councill that is not acceptable in the Constitution Party.

As a former Republican, I can say it is typical of Republicans. I would like to build a local unit in Franklin City for the Constitution Party, but not with anyone that is so divisive and uncivil and that focuses on “the Black Community” or “the White Community,” but those that are focused on the Franklin City Community.

If anyone that meets those requirements is interested in building an honest political party, they can contact me at

John Bloom

Newport News