Its surprising how much you can accomplish if you don't care who gets the credit
Today was another stellar day at the annual meeting of the AZGOP elected State Committeemen. The meeting was scheduled to begin at 9:00 and end at three.
It started out on what seems to be a high note for AZGOP/Lines. The sign in sheets were a total mess, the lists were not correct but were outdated lists from the districts that did not take into account the updates that had been made to the lists in the past year. They are so inept they can't even put a proper list together so that signatures could be added as SCs checked in. The Credentials report went by so fast no one could keep up. Now, we know why. They didn't even know what the heck they had!
NEW: Given that they have allowed non-qualified people vote in these elections to assure a win for their candidates and positions, they probably didn't want anyone to know exactly how many proxies were to be voted! Remember, last year we posted that they had Quislings and staff voting to defeat Jim O'Connor by only 34 votes! They also had three "State Committeemen-at-large votes... there is no such thing as at-large SCs. That makes this behavior business as usual.
Then, after that, ballots were tossed about willy nilly by some accounts, co-mingling the voted ballots with spoiled ballots with extra ballots. That, at least, is the report. We aren't sure if there were any paper ballots but if their were, you can rely on the above info of disorganization extraordinaire! Well, it's nice to be good at something, we suppose, even if it's making an unholy mess out of simple sign in sheets!
These meetings never end on time and neither did this one. This one, though, had to end by 4:00 at the latest and even as they were continuing to vote on the Bylaws Amendments, people were breaking down the room. We were told overtime charges kicked in at 4:00! Well, that is a motivator, for sure.
We only have a scattered report so far and are awaiting a credentials report. Given the chaos of the sign in, we will probably never get a correct credentials report to know who was there in person or by proxy. We know that Barry Wong, Chairman of LD24, was very proud that, of his group of 30 SCs, 28 turned out! WOW! Uh, oh, not so fast. The ratio was nearly 50% people and 50% proxies with 15 present in person, 13 by proxy. Folks, when nearly have the votes are cast by people who did not show up - which is standard for these meetings - the meeting should be illegitimate.
There were a couple of floor fights but before we get to that, it will come as no surprise that the Lines slate miraculously won all seats.
Then there was a floor fight over the Consent Calendar. It took up time and we are not sure how that came out but we would expect that Lines prevailed. The Conservatives tried to recall Lines but the motion failed on a questionable vote.
Then there was a floor fight over the Bylaws. Al Gage, the "Presider" for the meeting was asked to remove the Bylaws indefinitely. Gage pulled the same stunt as was pulled a couple of years ago over a Resolution to Censure Robert Graham. What happened then is that the "Presider," who was not Al Gage, read from Robert's Rules a passage that called the Censure Resolution out of order and it was never heard. Later, it was found that the "Presider" read only part of the Rule, but not the exception to the rule that would have allowed the Resolution to be voted on.
This time, Joe Neglia was ready for them. They tried the same stunt, read only the first part of the Rule. That is when Neglia jumped in and read the rest of the rule. Boom! Al Gage on the mat!
The Bylaws vote went forward but only after several amendments were pulled. In the end, the Bylaws failed completely, giving a YUGE win to the Conservatives. Itasca Small made an outstanding and reasonable argument regarding the validity of the voting, or rather, perhaps the lack thereof. Of course, this is an AZGOP meeting and they can always be accurately questioned about the validity of the voting. People were very impressed with the arguments she made which people agree caught the Presider off balance. Not a good day for Al Gage!
This just in from Arizona Daily Independent who wrote a truly delicious article on the Democrat AND the AZGOP state meetings last weekend:
"@Kimberhatt is referring to an incident when Jonathan Lines AZGOP Chairman was speaking at the podium. He was connected electronically to, and told what to say, by a top McCain political hand, Jon Seaton, of East Meridian Strategies, who worked for McCain in his 2008 campaign and has remained with him since. Seaton was one of the operatives behind McCain’s purge of conservatives in the AZGOP after McCain was censured by the party faithful.
"Seaton’s actions were witnessed by more than one State Committeeman. When Seaton was confronted about his actions he refused to identify himself and ran off to hide. Seaton then called security to have one of the State Committeeman involved removed. This plan failed as security, upon hearing both sides, seemed to support the State Committeeman involved and went looking for Seaton."
Thanks to Arizona Daily Independent for the following tweets:
Remember this from 2015 when McCain was censured. This meeting is just a continuation of the Revenge of McCain.
Many thanks to Bob Thorp, who along with Brenda Barton, do(es) a nice job of representing those of us residing in the Payson area of Gila County. (Note to editor: he can't help being tall; some of my best friends are tall and I try to support them with compassion as best I can given that I have never been afflicted with that curse).
Mike: Perhaps you did not read our message correctly so here it is again:
"he's very tall and thin and looks great in his Abe Lincoln outfit." Tall is good! Not tall is good! Lincoln was tall and thin and made a pretty decent President and Thorpe makes a great Lincoln! Stove pipe hat and all.
We do our best.
I've seen Thorpe around the Capitol grounds in his Lincoln outfit. I agree, he makes a darn good Lincoln. I'd forgotten about him doing that. He was speaking at some event at the Capitol last time I saw him. Had to do a double take.
Of course, it is only that OTHER Party that is guilty of unethical, devious, illegal, and blatantly immoral activity. Things like voter fraud, or false or ethical misleading statements, candidate selection and victory by other than open, rule-adhering processes; those things ONLY happen within the boundaries of THOSE people on the OTHER side. But, OUR motives are always pure, and OUR members are nothing but people of faith and GOOD character who wish only to do the best for our Party, and therefore our country.
On the rare occasion when we do find the odd dead mackerel among us, we hasten to distance it from us and profess it has no smell. We admonish one another to not display OUR "dirty laundry," for fear that the other side (and of course) their minions, the media, will display it to the world and drive away both neutral and supportive public factions, not to mention also lose a few of the “pure” within our ranks that are fed up with the rot.
Are we so vain as to think that the general population of our state doesn't already know how tattered and disconnected our party actually is? Just the "odor" of our "laundry" screams to the world that we are, at least, fractured, leaderless, and out of control. In evidence, for example, is in the public bickering between the Party and the Republicans we elect. Even more indicative is the rancor among the Republicans that are elected. Is the state or its citizens (or even just the party) properly served, when elected Republicans; Governors, Secretaries, Attorneys, Senators and Representatives, in County, State and Federal offices, endlessly cancel out one another's votes? They openly bicker and bash on each other, wielding unsupported Party authority and clashing official duties against official authorities. The arguments are NOT based on what's best for our state, nor is it based on compliance to a majority-confirmed "platform" of the issues, nor does it need to be consistent with the majority of constituents who placed them in the position of representing them in a republican form of government. They ALL (including the so-called good ones) need a brief trip to the woodshed and a quick lesson to remind them of what the purpose of government really is (and it has absolutely NOTHING to do with them individually). Switch in hand is optional.
So, once again, it appears that the State Meeting produced the most predictable and most consistent outcome in the politics of the modern era -- Perpetuation of the status quo.
I assure you, INames may change, issues may change, participants may change, but until a leader, a true person of character, one who can earn the support of the majority, and withstand the assault of the "untrue," can be found and convinced to lead, we are doomed to perpetuation without progress. Without new, solid, supported leadership, the IDEALS and the true concepts of minimal government, moral government, and a defensively strong government, will be lost to the party that Arizonans (and America) believe Republicanism stands for...
So, you leaders of the various "outrageous" issues brought to the State Convention and suffered glorious defeat, should seek out and support that new leader and put your specific issue aside in favor of unifying under a truly capable leader. Please NOTE: That new, capable leader? IT AINT YOU! Each of you has proven you're on the right side with your individual battles of bylaws, proxies, Roberts Rules, and on and on. But it is also evident that individual jousting at flies does little to advance the gathering of a combined political force able to fight for ALL of our unifying principles. You do realize that even had you won your chosen battle, it's not likely anything (meaningful) would be changed. Either it ALL gets changed, or nothing gets changed.
Don’t get me wrong. Thank you to all who were willing to stand and fight for a cause! You have done well to openly challenge the foe. Therefore, I nominate all of you to lead the search for a new, overall, state-wide leader. Until we have THAT leader, you represent the best place to share and collect the candidates. Be wary of the “self nominator,” but don’t dismiss the reticent volunteer.
I apologize for my ineloquent pontifications, but I love this country, and I love my grandchildren too much to curse the darkness when I still have the tiniest candle to help beat it back.
It is obvious that our current "official" (albeit illegitimate) party leadership is heading us down the wrong path. Their concern is limited to, at best, WINNING, regardless of compromised (if not abandoned) ideals. I would suggest that winning with someone who does not (CANNOT) adhere to clear party positions, is not a WIN. Our party’s ability to defend our principles is reduced by one and their capacity to impose their principles is increased by one, depending on what that principle may be. (At worst, for us conspiracy theorists, is the “establishment” Republican leadership’s goal of putting and maintaining specific (controllable) individuals into elected, management, and controlling party positions to maintain or advance something other than our published Party goals.)
I assure you, the right person is out there. The right person can and will be found if we all start and keep looking. EVERYONE can and should be involved in identifying and bringing that "leader" to the attention of party members who recognize the need for overall leadership is required. Individual, “hot-button” issues (mentioned above) can be resolved, but their resolution requires the Party to unify, and a leader who is unwilling to sacrifice any cause that is necessay and consistent with true Republican principles.
Who is that person? That person will stand out in the reflection of their Good Character (as defined and revered by our Founding Fathers). Is it a Bank President, Stay at Home Mom, Teacher, Retired Rancher, Lawyer (Ye-Gads!), Repentant Lawyer (there are a few), or even a Man of God? It’s one of those, or someone else. We can and must find that person.
Eloquence? Not required. Appearance? Irrelevant. "Team" Organizer? Unnecessary. Character? It is the ONLY absolutely, necessary trait. But I will wager my sacred vote that when we find him or her, that candidate will have enough of each of those skills to accomplish truly great Party Leadership.
If we wait until tomorrow to start looking, we have already lost at the next State Convention (as well as any opportunity to advance our cause before then).
May God Bless America and May God Bless Arizona (because we have begun to help ourselves).
HB 2012 limits the use of proxies
As does HB 2029, but I don't think that one comes up for discussion any time soon, unlike for HB 2012, which does tonight, at the same time as the SOTU.
I'm surprised the liberal Arizona Republic hasn't heard of or reported on the shenanigans of the entrenched GOPe. This is juicy stuff! Maybe they don't want to help Grassroots Conservatives to have any influence in the Democrat-Lite AZ GOP.