He’s accused of using abusive and intimidating tactics at a hearing that ultimately resulted in a permit being granted to a massive mosque in Nokesville, Virginia.
And now, after the contentious June hearing, a citizens group is determined to recall Corey Stewart, chairman of the Prince William County Board of County Supervisors.
Kay Herrera of Save our Prince William County announced a petition drive at the Sept. 12 Board of County Supervisors meeting to remove Stewart from office. In question is Stewart’s handling of the June 27 public hearing, which included more than eight hours of public comment and stretched into the wee hours of the next morning.
When it was all over, the All Dulles Area Muslim Society, or ADAMS, mosque was granted a special-use permit that will allow it to construct a sprawling 22,400-square-foot facility in Nokesville, Virginia, near Manassas.
The Islamic community in Nokesville, which is in Prince William County, only has 150 to 200 congregants.
ADAMS Center is a chain of five mosques in Virginia, in Ashburn, Sterling, Fairfax, Chantilly and Gainesville. The Gainesville congregation is currently meeting in a hotel in Manassas but wants to build the new, much larger facility in rural Nokesville. The chain of mosques is directly tied to the North American Islamic Trust, an offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood and an unindicted co-conspirator in the 2000 Holy Land Foundation trial in Dallas, Texas, which sent five American Muslims to prison for funneling Islamic charitable donations to Hamas, a designated foreign terrorist organization.
Stewart, a Republican who is running for the U.S. Senate seat now held by Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Va., has been accused by two of his fellow supervisors of bending parliamentary rules during that middle-of-the-night vote to turn what was initially a 4-to-4 denial into a 5-to-3 approval of the mosque permit, the Prince William Times reports.
“At the end, after the vote was called, Chairman Stewart was badgering and intimidating Supervisor Jenkins and telling him how Chairman Stewart himself was going to vote and how Supervisor Jenkins should vote,” Herrera told WND Thursday. “Once the vote is called, this type of behavior is inappropriate. You can hear the outrage from the audience.”
“We strongly urge citizens to watch the last hour of the hearing on June 27-28, 2017, to see for themselves the lengths to which Corey Stewart will flout procedure, employ coercion, and trample over fellow Supervisors to achieve his desired outcomes,” Herrera posted on the group’s Facebook page.
Watch the meeting in question, where the chairman is accused of abusing his power to get a permit approved for a local mosque:
The text of the recall petition reads as follows:
“We demand that Corey Stewart, Chairman of the Board of County Supervisors, be removed from office by reason of INCOMPETENCE IN THE PERFORMANCE OF DUTIES and MISUSE OF OFFICE, which has materially undermined his fiduciary responsibilities of office. We call upon the Court to review both the minutes and video of proceedings on Special Use Permit # PLN2014-00313, entertained at the Board of County Supervisors (BOCS) public hearing on June 27-28, 2017. Chairman Stewart, through either gross negligence or deliberate misconduct: improperly allowed a motion to be split, solicited and accepted an improper motion to reconsider, and intimidated a fellow Supervisor into reversing his vote. These procedural violations directly resulted in the overturning of a prior motion and will have a significant material effect on Prince William County. Chairman Stewart’s actions violate Board of County Supervisors Rules of Procedure, compromise the democratic process, and represent a flagrant abuse of power.”
County Attorney Michelle Robl has since declared the June 28 vote legal, while acknowledging the board violated procedural rules during the series of votes approving the permit. Herrera said citizens don’t consider Robl’s edict credible.
Herrera addressed the Board of Supervisors on Tuesday night, Sept. 12.
“I watched the voting irregularities that occurred at the ADAMS [Mosque] hearing on June 27-28 of 2017, and we watched it with growing dismay, shock and anger,” she said. “I am joining a growing group of Prince William citizens that are taking action.”
She said Stewart, despite significant concerns raised by citizens “and your own colleagues around the table, since the June 27 hearing, you have failed time and again to explain your egregious actions on the record to the citizens of Prince William County.
“You therefore leave us no other choice.”
Herrera said the citizens group is working to collect the roughly 7,000 local signatures needed to force a court review of the procedures used by Stewart and potentially approve a recall vote.
“The petition cites your brazen misuse of office and incompetence in performance of your duties stemming from your gross procedural violations,” she said.
Stewart did not respond to her comments Tuesday evening.
“To be perfectly clear, this is not about the outcome or even the subject of the June 27 hearing, nor is it about politics or partisanship,” Herrera said. “This is a citizen-led petition. We are united in demanding trust, integrity and accountability from our elected officials. We must have trust in our elected officers, we must have integrity in the governmental process, and ultimately accountability when violations of rules or procedures threaten the voting process and therefore the democratic process.
“There is a rising chorus of voices asking you simply to resign,” Herrera said. “Moreover it is clear you would rather be anywhere but here. However until the day comes we are proceeding with this petition. The citizens of Prince William County deserve better.”
Under Virginia law, elected officials can only be recalled if found guilty of drug charges or of “neglect of duty, misuse of office, or incompetence in the performance of their duties when that neglect of duty, misuse of office, or incompetence in office has a material adverse effect upon the conduct of the office.”
Stewart, meanwhile, was unfazed by the recall effort.
“How concerned am I about it?” Stewart told the Prince William Times. “Zero.”
Stewart said the rules of procedure he violated are merely “guidance” for the board’s decision-making process and not legally binding.
Stewart told the local paper that supervisors had no choice to approve ADAMS’ special-use permit for a public-sewer connection because the board had granted such permits to Christian churches. Not doing so for a mosque could be deemed a violation of federal nondiscrimination laws.
Stewart further said he doesn’t believe the recall effort, which he believes will fail, will hurt his bid for the U.S. Senate because “the more people who attack me, the better.”
“When people see politicians getting attacked, it means they’re actually getting something done,” Stewart told the Times.
“All news coverage is good news coverage,” Stewart added. “I hope they come back [to the supervisors’ meeting] next week.”
Opponents of the mosque complex have been accused by proponents of “Islamophobia,” even though the group that wants to build it has ties to a pair of radical Islamic organizations.
Syed Murtaza, a member of the ADAMS Gainesville committee, told the Washington Post, “I think it’s very clear that it is more than just a land-use issue.”
Philip Haney, who studied Arabic culture and language while working as a scientist in the Middle East before becoming a founding member of the Department of Homeland Security in 2002, told WND that ADAMS is administered through NAIT, which holds the titles to the land of nearly one-third of the U.S. mosques.
“ADAMS is playing by a different set of rules, or worldview, than the people living near the proposed mosque site,” said Haney. “Thus, they hold the sociopolitical advantage.”
He warned, “This scenario has been, and will be, played out ad infinitum across the country, until we begin to recognize, and coherently defend, the Constitution versus Shariah (Islamic law), rather than narrowly defining the argument as discrimination against them civil rights and/or religious liberty of Muslims.”
Middle East expert Clare Lopez of the Center for Security Policy told WND that ADAMS is headed by an imam named Muhammad Magid, who “is the son of the Muslim Brotherhood’s grand mufti of Sudan. He is also the president of the Islamic Society of North America, the largest Muslim Brotherhood front group in the country. And, ISNA, like CAIR and NAIT, is an unindicted co-conspirator in the 2008 Holy Land Foundation Hamas terror funding trial.”
Lopez explained that ISNA’s close connection to the Muslim Brotherhood is indisputable.
“ISNA is actually listed by the Muslim Brotherhood on its own documents called the ‘Explanatory Memorandum,’ which was submitted in evidence at that Holy Land Foundation trial; that’s how we know about it. The last page is a list of organizations, and it says it’s a list of our friends and the organizations of our friends. And ISNA is one of them.”
The Brotherhood claimed to renounce violence as a political strategy in 1971, but that hasn’t stopped it from calling for jihad in America.
The highly respected Middle East Research Institute, or MEMRI, reported that in September 2010, Muslim Brotherhood Supreme Guide Muhammed Badi called for jihad against “the Muslim’s real enemies, not only Israel but also the United States. Waging jihad against both of these infidels is a commandment of Allah that cannot be disregarded.”