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Federalism and the SCC

November 27, 2009

Governor Herbert addressed the Republican state central committee on November 21. Personable and approachable, he came early and stayed for the entire meeting. When it came time for him to talk to the audience, he started by saying that the had just returned from the Republican governors confab and that they are united in their desire to avoid the creation of the nanny state that the federal government is trying to push on us. He said it is the responsibility of the states to lead out on issues like healthcare, energy and more.

He address the ethics initiative and praised Utah’s legislature. He said that they are consistently ranked high – the best managed state, one of the least corrupt and constantly praised at national gatherings he attends. He quoted Bob Bernick’s article from Oct 9, where Bernick started:

I’ve spent my adult working years reporting and commenting on Utah politics.

And it’s probably fair to say most of the words flowing from my keypad have been critical — critical as in taking a hard look at what Utah’s politicians and public institutions are doing with your tax dollars and their power.

Bernick then goes on to talk what is right with Utah politics – representative government, citizen involvement, fiscal conservatism, best managed state (a credit to the GOP majority in the legislature, he says), election costs and funding, open, honest government, lack of scandal and corruption, accountability and stability. Governor Herbert emphasized that the results we see coming out of the Utah legislature is because, by and large, they are doing things right.

Governor Herbert underlined again that his #1 focus is on growing the economy – “the driver is the private sector“, he said, “not the government.” He said they are especially concerned with protecting the jobs we have and expanding those jobs. He also said in today’s tough economy, he has no plan to raise taxes and will not champion a tax increase.

Lt. Governor Greg Bell spoke briefly and said that he is delighted to be a Republican – he simply could not be a Democrat. He said Republicans cut taxes, limit government and try to get out of the way – Democrats try to fix problems through government – more regulations, more taxes, more programs – more, more, more.

Representative Rob Bishop stood and spoke briefly. He said he wanted to address 4 things very quickly, then ticked off the following:
*he is in favor of the resolution opposing the UEG initiative
*re: campaign finance “reform” – the FEC makes it impossible for anyone to run without a lot of money. Current campaign finance laws promote incumbent retention, which IS NOT A GOOD THING. It keeps a lot of good people from even considering a run.
*he said he was “happy to be here“. “Nothing has come out of DC this year of which I am proud”, he said. He also remarked that the differences between Republicans and Democrats is very clear this year.
*in a forceful, emotional comment, Congressman Bishop said the principle that will save our country is federalism – states rights and preventing the cradle-to-grave restrictions forced on us by the federal government. The Constitution protects us from our own instincts and from the consolidation of power – that’s why we have a system of checks and balances.

Vice-chair Morgan Philpot spoke briefly on the use of social media. During the governor’s presentation, he tweeted “Herbert spkg to GOP SCC; his phone rings (silent but static in mic), he pulls out of pocket, throws to Demma across the rm and catch is good”. That post was retweeted by 4 people who reached 4,000 followers with that message. He pointed out that within literally seconds, at least 4000 people had a glimpse of the governor that was personable and made him seem “real”. He emphasized that the use of social media will play a big role in the 2010 and 2012 elections and encouraged everyone there to jump on board. The morning training meeting, in fact, had been about the use of social media. Awesome.

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