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Bay County GOP Continues Referring To President-elect Biden As 'President-imposed'

Terry Cypher, a GOP volunteer, gets ready for the presidential debate watch party at the Bay County Republican Party headquarters in Panama City on Thursday, Oct. 22, 2020.
Terry Cypher, a GOP volunteer, gets ready for the presidential debate watch party at the Bay County Republican Party headquarters in Panama City on Thursday, Oct. 22, 2020.

Members of the Bay County Republican Party will continue referring to President-elect Joe Biden as president-imposed after he’s inaugurated this week.

Vice Chairman Tho Bishop says the resolution, which party leaders passed in early December, is a peaceful form of resistance, unlike the storming of the U.S. Capitol.

“The Bay County Republican Party stands with President Trump,” said Tho Bishop, vice chairman of the county’s GOP executive committee. “We saw this as a way of making it clear where this specific party stands, so that the people in our community feel represented.”

Biden's swearing-in ceremony will take place on Wednesday.

Trump secured about 71 percent of the vote in Bay County. Bishop says the local party is giving a voice to Trump supporters who might otherwise feel left out of the political process.

“There are a lot of Republican voters that trust Trump a lot more than they do the GOP establishment," Bishop said. “They fear they are going to lose their party to the Mitch McConnell’s of the world. And I think they see us taking a stand as a sign that we’re not going to do that.”

The county’s Republican State Committeewoman-elect Mitzi Prater has publicly opposed the local chapter’s public refusal to recognize the legitimacy of a Biden presidency.

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Valerie Crowder is a freelance reporter based in Panama City, Florida. Before moving to Florida, she covered politics and education for Public Radio East in New Bern, North Carolina. While at PRE, she was also a fill-in host during All Things Considered. She got her start in public radio at WAER-FM in Syracuse, New York, where she was a part-time reporter, assistant producer and host. She has a B.A. in newspaper online journalism and political science from Syracuse University. When she’s not reporting the news, she enjoys reading classic fiction and thrillers, hiking with members of the Florida Trail Association and doing yoga.