State Central Committee 9/19
About 125 people spent their Saturday morning – and into the afternoon – at the GOP State Central Committee meeting held in Provo. Of the 180 members of the SCC, 111 were credentialed – dropping to a mere 47 by the last vote of the day.
Chairman Dave Hansen started this first SCC meeting since the June election with the chair’s report. Speaking of the change in executive leadership in the state, he said “It is interesting that we can have two different people do the same job two different ways and both be successful.” He pledged his support to new Governor, Gary Herbert.
He also spoke of the grassroots groups that have sprung up – the Patrick Henry Caucus, the 9-12ers, tea partiers and more. “They have played an important role in getting people motivated and active.”, he said. “Their goals are very similar to ours – we are NOT AT ODDS.” He then quoted Ronald Reagan, “Someone that I agree with 80% of the time is my friend” and invoked the 11th commandment.
He and executive director Ivan Dubois gave attendees a sneak preview of the new website – oh-so-much better….easy to use, lots of links and an especially nice county area. Forums are forth-coming. Sadly, it is not yet live. Stay tuned.
Dave Hansen said this last week was one of the worst so far as chair – he had to listen to a comment from America’s most ineffective president and then comments from ACORN director who are both trying to paint the current unrest and unhappiness with the direction the country is going as a racist issue. Bull puckey. RACE is not the issue!
Bob Hood, on the 2007-2009 Constitution and Bylaws committee, proposed that the party limit the number of members on each committee to two per county and is referring it to the new C&B committee. Since the current committee still has 3 members from just one county, it seems unlikely that proposed rule will get very far.
35 candidates total ran for executive committee for each congressional district executive leadership, the audit committee, and the constitution and bylaws committee. Each candidate had up to a minute to speak, but most took far less time. Loudest applause was for those whose speeches were one-liners. Understandably, the speeches and the subsequent voting took the bulk of the meeting.
National Committeewoman Enid Mickelsen‘s report: She is currently vice-chair of the RNC rules committee. She is also on a new committee formed to address the presidential primary timing. They will be working with the DNC to at least discuss whether there can be changes to the timing and parameters of the primaries.
She also talked briefly about “Fair Boundaries Utah” and said that a few clicks of the mouse takes you goes directly to “Act Blue“, a Democrat political activism site. Only one state that currently has an effort to appoint an “unbiased” committee – that’s Utah. Curious that no states under Dem control ever move these types of proposals forward.
National Committeeman Bruce Hough is sitting on a newly formed committee – ethics. (Ok, seriously – that just BEGS the question – why has the RNC NOT had an ethics committee to this point?!)
He also sits on the Strengthening Utah’s Democracy commission along with Dave Hansen and 15 others. He commented briefly on campaign contribution limits, saying that current court trends are rolling back campaign limits and that the Supreme Court is looking at McCain-Feingold. His feeling is that it is a first amendment issue – freedom to express through donations the candidate(s) he supports. He does support openness, transparency and full, rapid disclosure of all campaign contributions.
Dana Dickson stood to promote multiple-round balloting for the next state convention, in opposition to IRV or instant run-off voting. The first opponent spoke against the proposal, saying that IRV allows more people to vote and is a quicker process. The next speaker – Jack Powers – spoke for the proposal and said he favors multiple rounds and doesn’t care if he we have MORE votes – we want more intelligent votes.
Ben Smith spoke against the proposal, Enid spoke for. Todd Weiler spoke against and says he loves the incentive for candidates to be nice to each other. IRV promotes that. Davis county just used IRV to replace Senator Bell and it worked well. Previous national committeewoman Nancy Lord spoke against multiple round balloting as well.
Three additional speakers were lined up waiting to speak against the proposal, but debate was cut-off because they could not find another speaker in favor of the proposal. Amid some confusion on what they were actuall voting for (pro IRV or pro multiple-round), the motion passed. Next year’s state convention will use multiple round balloting.
A resolution in support of HR 1207 and S 604 – the “audit the fed” bills was then brought forward. It passed unanimously and to lots of applause. Brought forward by Kurtis Constantine, secretary of the SL County party and passed out of the Salt Lake county central committee this week. Kurtis spoke not only to the importance of the resolution but also how important it is that the Republican party be clear what they stand for.
Representative Rob Bishop spoke and quipped: “It’s always a pleasure to be a filler while they are counting votes.” He said he would be “hard-pressed to find anything recently that I am proud of besides voting no on really bad legislation.” One interesting, albeit quite concerning, thing he mentioned was how we have 33 minutes to counteract a missile attack on the US – and we have a grand total of 30 missiles to do it with. Dismantling our missile shield program right now seems so, well, unwise.
He also talked briefly about the health care debate and wanted to know if abortion is a right and the government should fund it, should they fund his first amendment rights and buy him a printing press? How about funding our second amendment rights by buying all of us a gun?
In a somewhat ironic twist which showed the down side of multiple-round balloting (taking lots of time), there was no clear winner on round number two and a third round of voting was called for. In the most controversial move of the day, the meeting was adjourned before the final results were in, in a 24-23 vote. The meeting adjourned about 2 pm.d