There was a press release earlier today by the VPAC staff that stated Rep. Tracy Arinder and Rep. Bennett Malone had committed to the re-election of Rep. Billy McCoy as Speaker of the House. Both Rep. Arinder and Rep. Malone also appeared on the original list of 62 “committed supporters” that Rep. McCoy put out several days ago. We are sure the first list was wrong, the second list is also wrong, so just who really is a committed supporter of Rep. McCoy?

We continue to have a number of pledge cards signed by members who appear on the list of McCoy “committed supporters” who have put their names down as committed to Rep. Jeff Smith in the election for Speaker of the House that will take place in 2008. We expect those members to honor their written words. We also continue to talk to members of the House who also appear on the list of “committed supporters” for Rep. McCoy who tell us they are uncommitted and remain uncommitted.

We remain confident that we have enough signed pledge cards and enough uncommitted members who are leaning to our campaign that when the election takes place in 2008 we will prevail.

“We have heard of heavy-handed tactics such as threatening members’ committee assignments and responsibilities that have been used in such a way that we saw today. This VPAC press release today reflects the statement of Rep. McCoy’s personal political action committee but nothing else. The race is not over and will not be over until the vote is taken in January of 2008,” said Smith.