Category Archives: Chester County GOP

PA Primary Results: Hillary Wins Big, GOP Delegate Picture a Mess

First thoughts:  Well, Hillary won by 10.  I guess that means this superdelegate tracking is going to have to continue for a while.

Regarding the GOP delegate races, those results are a little spread out over the interwebs, so will require some time to aggregate.  My favored candidate for my district– Jim McHale– did not win, but he did OK.  Interestingly, in my district well-known insider Ken Davis, about whom many are less than enthused, was included on the GOP sample ballot as an endorsed delegate at the last second absent any appropriate vote, at least as far as this committeeman is aware.

While Mr. Davis did not win, he did siphon off 1300 votes which affected the ultimate results.  There could be an explanation for this, but the most thorough one I’ve heard thus far is there was a “mix-up”, so an endorsement fell upon him by fiat, like manna from heaven.  This will require more investigation.  A very polite e-mail to the chairman of the Chester County GOP has thus far gone unanswered.

As for the rest of the Commonwealth, I believe there are at least some unendorsed delegates who have been elected, and not all of them are Paul-bearers.  As Mr. Drudge says, developing…

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First GOP Delegate Sign Spotted!

I believe one is only allowed to display yard signs one month or less before an election.  Jim McHale is on his game, because shortly after that deadline I spotted one of his signs at the intersection of Routes 113 and 401, which I presume is in the sixth congressional district, which is mostly in Chester County and Berks County.

While I don’t know anything about Mr. McHale, I hereby endorse his candidacy, which is my prerogative as a committeeman.  He was not one of the rubber-stamp candidates ‘endorsed’ by the local GOP committee, and that’s good enough for me.  As I live in his district, I think I’ll actually be able to vote to send him to the GOP national convention.

Of course, he could be a Paul supporter.  Or perhaps he digs on the Huckster.  Heck, he could be a Bircher for all I know.

What I do know is that he cares more than the endorsed candidates, for whom I’ve seen no signs.  He will also likely be a straw that stirs the drink, and that’s what the GOP needs both here in Pennsylvania and nationally.

(In fact, I’m going to put my money where my mouth is and run him some Google ads off of my account, linked directly to this post.  This means if you’re reading this, Jim, you should pop me an e-mail at karlub at yahoo dot com to make sure I’m representing you accurately!)

GOP Superdelegate Project; Time; Local Campaigns

Dedicated readers will have noticed an interruption in my GOP superdelegate project.  To refresh your memory, I am endeavoring to make a matter of public record all people running to be GOP delegates from Pennsylvania to the national convention, and how they plan to dispose of their responsibilities there.

This is necessary because they are uncommitted, and the GOP seems pretty uninterested in providing this information to regular GOP voters.  You know, those people the party expects to pull straight GOP tickets with the same circumspection drunk grandmothers use at slot machines in Atlantic City.

Alas, both work and alternate political interests have slowed me down.  Among those interests are working for the GOP candidates in my area:  Admiral Steve Kantrowitz for PA Senate 19, Mr. Guy Ciarrocchi in PA House 157, and Representative Gerlach.  You will soon find links to their sites on the right.  Please note Guy’s official campaign site is not up just yet.

I resolve, though, to have a roughly complete list by the end of the month, giving voters three weeks to find it.  To that end, though, if anyone feels like helping, please get in touch at karlub at yahoo dot com.

GOP Committeeman to “petition the government for a redress of greivances.”

When calling up delegation candidates in Pennsylvania I was surprised how many did not reject the notion of a protest vote out of hand.  Many well known delegate candidates, including Fred Anton, David Dumayer, and Vito Canuso, were at least willing to entertain a protest abstention.  For those outside of PA, they are, respectively: A leading GOP activist and fundraiser, a township supervisor, and the chairman of the Philadelphia GOP.

Some well known folks who are not running to be members of the delegation, like representative Curt Schroeder, also happen to consider such a course of action within the pale, so to speak.

I was advised to put off acquiring and publishing information about those running to be delegates from Pennsylvania to the GOP National Convention until I could assist, instead, in the organized process run by the state GOP.  Turns out nobody knows of such an effort.

Therefore it seems to me I have no choice but to start freelancing again.  I will, of course, check with my local party leaders first.  But every voter with whom I’ve spoken thinks reform is necessary.  The system as currently crafted demands that voters know how delegation candidates plan to dispose themselves at the convention, and nobody seems to care all that much about providing voters this information.  Many delegation candidates I’ve contacted agree reform is necessary, and would consider a protest abstention.

I am left to conclude, then, this project is necessary.  Necessary to make this asinine system work as designed, necessary to promote reform, and necessary because nobody else cares to do it.  Furthermore, there is nothing divisive about it.  Any protest that results will be against our ridiculous primary system, not the presumptive GOP nominee for president.

Some May Ask: “So What’s The Solution Smarty-Pants?”

One of the delegation candidates running who happens to be endorsed and is not some rabble-rousing manufacturer of nuisance like myself asked me “Dysfunctional system?  Of course.  I’d be curious about your remedies.”

First, it may be news to people who run the Pennsylvania GOP, but pretty much all the delegation candidates with whom I have spoken agree our primary system is broken and wish it would be reformed.  As such, my notion of a protest vote is, by definition, not radical or contrary to the will GOP members.  Nor is it contrary to the will of their constituents, at least as far as we can tell.

Seems to me the best idea is the rotating regional primary.  A national primary day would be an improvement, but it would be nice to maintain the ability for a less wealthy candidate to slowly build momentum.  A regional primary might preserve that.

See the Wikipedia entry for regional primaries:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rotating_Regional_Primary_System

Furthermore, I would make delegational appointments proportional, and still maintain a small pool of unpledged delegates who would decide the race in cases of very, very close races.  The ratio currently in the Democrat party seems high.

For a variety of reasons the national parties aren’t all that warm to the idea.  I think it mostly has to do with a reluctance to “learn” a new system, and also the fact that some political perquisites are currently distributed with the current system.  Also, the way the system currently runs has put those very beneficiaries in the position of determining if reform is necessary.

In order to draw attention to this need for reform, I plan to lobby delegates from Pennsylvania to formally abstain.  This has three major benefits:

1)  While abstaining the delegation can express full-throated moral support for the presumptive nominee, so party unity is preserved.  Personally, I don’t think unity in this context matters a whit.  Some people of good conscience think it does, though, so the charitable thing to do is to find a way to accommodate them.

2)  The threat of a protest may actually force people to listen to our delegation in less sexy convention procedures, like the platform ratification.  Some of those less sexy rituals may actually end up having something to do with election reform.

3)  By abstaining on the floor the whole nation would briefly be forced to consider this issue.  As reform is necessary on a national level, this is critically important on a PR level.  Nothing will ever happen unless those responsible for keeping it the way it is have a bright light pointed at them.

That’s the gist of what I’m doing here, at least on the GOP end.  If the state folks don’t get back to me soon, I am going to have to start freelancing again.  I’d rather not.  I’m as lazy as the next guy, and would love their help.

GOP Delegate Project: Still Suspended

Just a quick update on my GOP delegate project:  Spent a few moments with the GOP Chester County Executive Director yesterday afternoon as I was plotting with our candidate of PA House 157 and our area’s brain trust.  Delightful group of folks, and a good time was had by all.  We are lucky to have Guy Ciarrocchi running.

Anyway, she mentioned she had not heard back from the State Committee yet on who was compiling GOP delegate information, and whether or not I could help them and publish the results here.  So I am going to be a dutiful soldier and accept my orders to do nothing on that project for a couple more days.

Remember, though, contacting all of these delegation candidates will be a big project, and take time.  If I don’t hear from them soon, I will have to start freelancing again.

And a quick note to party members who may be reading this:  I cannot be dissuaded from this project with an argument claiming delegates can’t possibly know in March what they will do at the convention in the summer.  This very case was forcefully made to me by one delegation candidate who clearly forgot that voters were supposed to evaluate candidates in April.

Absent some knowledge about how a delegation candidate plans to deport his or herself over the summer in St. Paul, how are voters in April supposed to decide who will represent them at the convention?  Ballot position and hair color?

Huckabee, Pennsylvania, and the GOP

As I’ve noted, the PA GOP has endorsed John McCain.  This will likely greatly influence the votes of our unbound delegates to the GOP convention.

Thing is, Mike Huckabee hasn’t quit yet.  And since Tsunami Tuesday he’s won Kansas and Louisiana, and may or may not have upset McCain in Washington State this past weekend.  We don’t know yet.

In Pennsylvania, the most recent polling suggests his support in the Commonwealth is commensurate with that of John McCain, and his electability here against Hillary and Barack are similar as well.  Take a look at these Rasmussen numbers, for example.  And keep in mind those numbers were taken before the Huckster was the only anti-McCain option.

Furthermore, he’s just received the endorsements of influential conservative and Heritage Foundation co-founder Paul Weyrich, and social conservative bigwig James Dobson.  Those endorsements could mean something upstate.

Nevertheless, the PA GOP decided to endorse McCain prior to Pennsylvania’s kabuki primary in April.

Thus the Pennsylvania GOP cares more about the primary votes of independents in New Hampshire and retired New York republicans in Florida than it does about the will of republican voters in the Keystone State.

I’ll be hanging around Chester County GOP HQ later today, turning in some primary petitions.  I’ll see what the word on the street is regarding the state party endorsement.  I’ll also start the process of getting a list of people running to be delegates come primary time.

In case you’re wondering, I am not running to be a delegate.  I probably should have, but I selflessly spent my signature time ensuring my continued status as a committeeman, and also making sure Steve Kantrowitz and Guy Ciarrocchi had enough signatures.  They’ll be running for the state house seat in district 157, and state senate seat for district 19, respectively.