The chairman of the Frederick County Republican Central Committee disavowed a tweet sent by committee member and state Del. Dan Cox as rioters were storming the U.S. Capitol Wednesday.

Cox's tweet, sent at 3:21 p.m. as demonstrators were breaking windows and forcing their way into the U.S. Capitol, read “Pence is a traitor.”

Cox is a vocal supporter of President Donald Trump, and Vice President Mike Pence (R) has been criticized by some Trump allies for saying he wouldn't support objections to state electoral college results certifying Democrat Joe Biden's victory over Trump in November's election.

Cox did not return multiple requests for comment as of 7:45 p.m. Wednesday.

Steven Clark, the local GOP chairman, said Cox was speaking for himself in the tweet and not as a member of the Central Committee. Pence was doing his job and is not a traitor, Clark said.

The chairman went on to call Wednesday's actions abhorrent and reprehensible. He said people who stormed the Capitol should be prosecuted to the fullest extent possible.

Former county commissioner and council member Billy Shreve, another Republican Central Committee member, said he hadn't seen the tweet and couldn't speak for Cox.

Dan Cox Pence tweet

A spokesman for Gov. Larry Hogan (R), meanwhile, described Cox's tweet as “dangerous.”

Hogan strongly condemned the actions at the Capitol Wednesday.

Asked if the governor thought the tweet was appropriate for an elected official, Hogan spokesman Michael Ricci replied, “The governor is too busy at the moment to read tweets by QAnon sympathizers, but on a personal level, as someone who worked in the Capitol for more than 13 years, I think it's not only inappropriate, it's dangerous.”

Last October, Del. Cox used the hashtag #WWG1WGA, which stands for Where We Go One, We Go All. The hashtag is a rallying cry used by many who believe in the QAnon conspiracy theories, one of which claims Democrats and Hollywood elites are running a cabal of Satan-worshipping, child-sex predators, and that President Donald Trump is fighting that cabal. The conspiracy has been widely debunked, but it has risen in popularity in recent years, in part due to social media.

News-Post reporter Steve Bohnel contributed to this report.

(50) comments


Republicans are going to have to quit pussyfooting around and throw out anyone claiming to be an R who pulls stunts like Cox and works to overthrow the repeatedly proved free and fair election of Joseph Biden. Otherwise, they are complicit in destroying what generations of Americans have handed down to us - a functioning democratic republic. It's not perfect, but it's better than a dictatorship, and even most Republicans should know by now that a dictatorship allows one person to throw every one of them under the bus, and no law would protect them.


I urge everyone to do as I have done and call the Maryland State Bar Association and register a complaint against Dan Cox. The main number for the MSBA is (800) 492-1964


Looks like the snowflake Dan Cox set his Twitter account to "private". I guess he takes after his Daddy Trump with his thin skin.


I love the comments that remind us that we need strong candidates in both parties, all parties, to get out and get active in the community and then run for office! Cox will get reelected if he's the only one with an (R) after his name on the ballot. He has no right to represent the majority of citizens of Frederick and Carroll County and if have half-wits showing up for us at the state and national level, we fall prey to fewer services, industries, funding, etc. I taught kindergarten for a long time and I say every day (for the last four years)......I know how to deal with this behavior - 5 year olds are egocentric, don't have a packed toolbox of social skills, lie until they get busted, etc. It really is like a bunch of young children running around in adult roles. We have got to do better.

Greg F

Half the people you meet in any given day are statistically below average intelligence. Add they are a trump follower and that skews way more to the left to imbeciles in the bell curve scale.

Michael Hillman

I actually am ashamed that I endorsed him in my paper when he ran last year.

Since then I’ve grown increasingly aware that that was a bad decision. When I heard he was in PA trying to restrict access to the polls, I formally cut ties with him.

When he later tweeted out support for QAnnan I was revolted, but when I read this article in the paper today, he went too far … and I’m contemplating starting a recall campaign.

Cox is bad news and does not, and I repeat, does not, reflect the values of true conservative Republicans, nor those in the Northern part of the county.

There are lots of good Republicans who can, and will, take him on.

Mike Hillman

Editor, Emmitsburg News-Journal


Thank you and I agree, there are good Republicans, just that Cox isn't one of them.


Cheers Mike - there's nothing wrong in making mistakes and realizing that, we all do that.


Hey Mike. Your words are insightful and I am glad you have seen the light.

But the complete dearth and lack of public expressions of disgust and dismay for many months now from high level Republicans in the local area (to include the FredCo Repub Comm) leads me to believe he is entrenched. Where are all these other "good Republicans" you refer to? You say he does not reflect the values you espouse, but why I have I not heard anything from anyone in 2020 defending the local Republican party and Cox?

Comments on FNP boards constantly run 95% against Cox and 5% pro. Where are all these true conservative Republicans you speak of? Hiding out in Catoctin Park? Among the orchard apple trees? Saying penance at the Mother Seton Shrine and Grotto? Hanging out in the Shamrock's empty parking lot reminiscing about the good 'ole days?

I feel for all you Thurmont and Emmitsburg folks, especially until January, 2023. But until true leadership arrives, you see what fills the vacuum. You know the old sports saying...if you keep letting a bad team hang around, they will eventually beat you. You appeared to have given him chance after chance after chance. I actually think the Republican party is on the brink of a civil war, which will open up Democratic party inroads for at least the next generation.


Happy, I'd add the following to your outstanding comment - I'm not interested in your holding an AR-15 as a campaign prop. I'm not interested in hearing your use the word "Socialist" to describe other Americans. I'm not interested in hearing that American freedom of religion is under assault. Bottom line - speak in real terms about real subjects that matter to this community and serve them - not your own ambitions.


Excellent points brought forward by you Piedmont. Thank you for adding to my post.

Michael Hillman


Regarding your comments of where are all the ‘good Republicans’ – please pause and think that this is probably the first time you ever saw me post to this site. I just frankly don’t do it.

But that doesn’t mean I didn’t exist, or my options were only shaped yesterday. I’ve been around for a while, and so have my opinions, and so have many like me. We just don’t frequent comment boards.

And before you asked, yes, I was invited to join the Shamrock group, many, many years back, but chose not to as their thought of what a Republican was differed vastly from mine.

That said, I agree with you - the Republican party is on the verge of a civil war, and I hope those who believe in the traditional values of what it once meant to be a Republican – those who saw Democrats as first and for most their countryman, as people who you argued policy over while sharing a beer, will win.

There are lots of us out there. All you have do is tune into the Lincoln Project, the Bulwark, the Triad – we are ramping up to take back the heart and soul of our party – including that in Frederick.

I will freely admit, I am a curable optimist. But I’m an optimist. I’m optimist about our country, our county, and the future of the GOP.

And if Jan Gardener is the face of the Democratic party - well - I perfectly fine with that! She got my vote twice!


Where are the County Central Committees? To have one of our representatives show such a disregard for his sworn duty and not have an outcry from our elected Central Committees of either party is also a dereliction of duty of duty.


It's a shame this man "represents" me in our State House. His actions have always been deplorable. This is just the latest demonstration of his complete ignorance of the law and quest for power. Too stupid to realize that enabling a narsicistic psychopath was dangerous to our country and society. Him, and so many others who are too blind to see what's behind the curtain. Now, hopefully, people will see, but, I'm not optimistic. Probably not Dan Cox whose too busy enabling conspiracy theories, psychopaths' and selling his integrity for power. I'm a registered R and I won't vote for him in the next election, but, it won't matter. He'll win in the 4th District only because he has an R after his name on the ballot, sad.


The trick is to get some good quality Republican candidates in the local primaries. And then organize like Stacy Abrams to turn out the sensible Rs.


He's just a pettifogger who's got a church and 9 kids to feed. What's a pettifogger you ask... well, Webster's Dictionary describes it as ":an inferior legal practitioner, especially one who deals with petty cases or employs dubious practices." Fits him well...


CD probably thinks Cox is a deep-state antifa member inciting violence to place blame on Trump.


This guy is among the shameless dregs of the Republican Party who have internally sworn an oath to Donald Trump. Cox is unworthy of office.


I'm surprised by the number of people who talk about following the Constitution, but have Never actually read it


No, Cox, you are the traitor.


Bosco, What do your more conservative friends think Pence should have done? Just curious.


Who voted for this slug Cox??? C'mon people, wake up.


Same people who voted for Trump.

Greg F

Cox needs to be removed from office for insanity and dereliction of duty.


Is there such a mechanism? Ashamed that he represents me in Annapolis.


Pence is a traitor?

And this language from a guy who disappears to PA for days and weeks to file frivolous lawsuits and engage in conspiracy theories and Sekulow stupidity, while leaving his Frederick and Carroll County constituencies, neighbors, church and KOA and amusement park and retired military friends, wife and nine kids languishing back here at home? During a nationwide pandemic and with social unrest pervasive?

Who is a traitor here?


Trump is obviously mentally ill as he cannot accept realty. Anyone who supports this needs to be removed from office. We need leaders who are grounded in reality.


It's not mental illness, it's dementia. He has had it since he was elected into office and it is getting worse. He was always a Narcissist, if you watch documentaries on him, you see the same past behaviors over decades. The difference here is that at times he clear and his attacks are focused and other times, he is disjointed, rambling and factually incorrect about his own facts. Those are tell-tale-signs of dementia.


He is invested in producing alternative facts, so it is hard to see where a line is defining mental illness, dementia, or extreme personality. It could be all three, depending on your perspective.


i do not believe anyone paid any attention to the constitution during this election. as far as i am concerned biden is not president of the United States.i will not watch on inauguration day.we are being governed by a bunch of crooks.


Proper English dictates you start sentences and last names with capitalized letters. If you want people to understand and support your position, proper grammar would be a good place to start.

Your 3rd grade language arts class starts up virtually in a few hours. Eat a good breakfast to start you day Leonard.



You forgot to provide him with crayons for a well-balanced meal.


There are a few like you, a very few.


Good work, Leonard. While you are not watching the Inauguration, why don't you find some other forum to post your silly words and conspiracy theories with like minded folks. On second thought, keep posting because democracy does indeed, "die in darkness."


"i do not believe anyone paid any attention to the constitution during this election."

So you would have been governed by crooks no matter who won. What about Trump's crookedness is so attractive to you?


You clearly can’t read.


Not to worry Leonard... those crooks will be gone on January 20th, and then we can get someone who's in his right mind...


Pretty much, that's a guy with a suit, a tie, a law degree who studied the Constitution, who hates America and Constitution. Heck of a role model and representative of a free people in a Republic. We used to call them Fascists. That's Dan and his evangelical freak show to a T.

Greg F

Kinda like Ted (Rafael) Cruz....son of an immigrant who fought to depose a dictator, who now wants to put one in the Oval Office as a dictator over a constitutionally elected individual. Cruz should also be removed from office, as should any other that supported this attempted coup.


We Frederick and Carroll County citizens are screwed through January 10, 2023. Cox is either hated or disliked by just about everyone in Annapolis. That means his jurisdiction, us, are going to be treated like a pariah until he is gone. We might as well all have leprosy.


Cox is evil.


Cox is a seditious threat to Frederick County, the State of Maryland and the USA.

Kinda late for the County Republican Committee try to distance themselves from him now. By not reigning him in and holding him accountable, local Republicans are complicit in his direlection of duty to Frederick and Carroll County citizens.






Thank you Steven Clark.


Dan Cox must be impeached. Not for calling Pence a "traitor." He abuses his office on a daily basis, disseminating conspiracy theories, disinformation, and spewing demagogic, divisive rhetoric. Members of the House of Delegates must impeach Cox. He is currently planning on a proposal to impeach Hogan, which will fail egregiously. Rather, Cox should be impeached.


"Pence was doing his job and is not a traitor, Clark said." Now if only we had a President who did not believe Pence has magical powers.


Cox is an embarrassment, period.




If Pence is a traitor so is Mitch McConnell. Pence might be a wimp but he knows, as Cox should, he could not do what Donald Trump wanted him to do. And if Cox had a ounce of sense he would know what Trump asked Pence to do was a violation of our Constitution. If Cox does not support the Constitution he is violating his oath of office and should resign.

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