Chair of Hampton Electoral Board removed from position after racist Facebook post, calls for resignation

Posted at 4:29 PM, Apr 11, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-11 16:29:25-04

HAMPTON, Va. - The chairman of the Hampton Electoral Board has been removed due to a racist social media post, the registrar for the City of Hampton confirmed to News 3 Monday.

The registrar said David Dietrich was appointed in January as the chair of the electoral board.

Last week, the Republican Party of Hampton demanded Dietrich resign after learning of a Facebook post he made in Feb. 2021.

In the post, Dietrich expressed his displeasure with the United States military, specifically criticizing U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin and retired Lt. General Russel Honoré. Dietrich used an anti-Black slur to refer to Austin and Honoré.

"The Hampton City Republican Party unequivocally condemns all forms of racism and bigotry, and specifically condemns the language employed by Mr. Dietrich," the group wrote.

Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin also condemned Dietrich's post, saying Dietrich's "abhorrent words... are beyond unacceptable and have no place in Virginia." The governor also called for Dietrich's resignation.

Monday, the Hampton NAACP sent us the following statement:

Democracy--that is, power held by and for the people--is fundamental to who we are as Americans. There is a long and well known history of efforts to target and suppress the participation of Black voters. Our democracy at the ballot box should never be compromised by a long time known racist that promotes public lynchings. In this climate of fake news, the topic of deception is to usurp the integrity of elections by stating irregularities in the voting process.
As the oldest civil rights organization in America, the NAACP will continue in our daring mission to ensure the full participation of Black voters in our democracy. Hampton Circuit Court has done the right thing by entering its Order to remove David Dietrich from his role in the oversight of our local elections. But, let the fact that he ever achieved such a position serve as a warning to all Virginians and to those across this country... white supremacy and nationalism is a persistent threat. Be alert. Be vigilant. Be unwavering.
Gaylene Kanoyton, president of the Hampton branch of the NAACP

News 3 has reached out to the City of Hampton for comment but has not yet heard back.