As your Estes Park Conservative Representatives we attended the Colorado State GOP Central Committee Meeting as voting Bonus Members yesterday with surprising results. By the end of the day the Old Guard was completely voted out and what are considered Grassroots Candidates voted in to lead the GOP forward towards 2016. Steve House former Gubernatorial Candidate was voted in as Chair. Derrick Wilburn, from the American Conservatives of Color Group was voted in as Vice Chair. This was a great VICTORY in the eyes of many. Brandi Meeks was voted in as Secretary. Bottomline in Colorado is that the Conservative Grassroots Movement has achieved a Great Victory. Now is the time to get involved in the movement, to come together as Conservative and strive for victory in 2016.
Archive for March, 2015
Ken Buck: Obama’s dangerous dance with Iran President Obama just made a dangerous world a lot more dangerous. His strategic bumbling in the most explosive part of the planet has set off a chain reaction. The president turned his back on America’s friends like Israel, Jordan and Egypt, and longtime partner Saudi Arabia. Desperate for help in crushing the Islamic State terrorists and diverting attention from his failures, President Obama has thrown in his lot with the Islamic Republic of Iran. America has no worse enemy. For three decades, the State Department classified Iran as a state sponsor of international terrorism. The Iranian regime supported and directed the 1983 bombing of the U.S. Marine barracks in Lebanon, slaughtering 241 American servicemen in a single stroke. Tehran aided terrorists worldwide ever since. Reports indicate it helped al-Qaeda in the 1990s. After 9/11, the regime helped al- Qaeda even more. When the U.S. sent forces to destroy al-Qaeda’s Taliban safe havens in Afghanistan, Iran aided the Taliban. When the U.S. led the way to oust Saddam Hussein and smash jihadists in Iraq between 2003 and 2011, Iran backed terrorists and Shiite militias to maim and kill our young men and women. Iran’s notorious Revolutionary Guard designed and built countless improvised explosive devices, giving them to terrorists to butcher our people more horrifically in both Iraq and Afghanistan. President Obama never called Iran to account for its unprovoked attacks on Americans. Instead, his policies have rewarded the ayatollahs. Iran is a longtime supporter of the Syrian regime — itself a state sponsor of terrorism — run by fanatics willing to murder thousands of its own citizens with chemical weapons. Bit by bit, Iran is surrounding the great oil fields of the Arabian peninsula. It has co-opted the government of Iraq that we had put in power. Last month, it helped Houthi extremists overthrow the pro-American president of Yemen, a government that President Obama once called his counterterrorism success story. It is trying to overthrow the government of Bahrain. And then, of course, there is America’s staunchest friend in the region: Israel. The Iranian regime continues to build the capability to execute its inflammatory rhetoric to exterminate Israel and hold the world hostage to new forms of nuclear terror. The ayatollahs and their followers believe their rhetoric. Israel, they insist, must be wiped out. America, they repeat daily, is “the Great Satan.” As true believers, they demand that the Great Satan must be destroyed as well. Last December, President Obama pretended not to notice the Iranian regime celebrating the 35th anniversary of the 1979 hostage crisis by staging “Death to America” rallies. Grasping for options against the atrocities of the Islamic State, Obama has gone soft on Iran. For years, the U.S., Israel and others had been working covertly to disrupt and destroy Iran’s nuclear weapons program. Not anymore. The president apparently believes that, for all their tough talk, the ayatollahs are reasonable men who can be trusted to strike a deal that benefits everybody. After all, no other country has more “boots on the ground” against the Sunni fanatics of the Islamic State than the Shiite fanatics of Iran. The Obama administration seems willing to accept an Iranian nuclear weapons system that is complete but not operational. Such a stance would assure Tehran that its big investment in nuclear missiles will ultimately become a reality. And President Obama could claim political success for preventing the ayatollahs’ nukes from actually being deployed. At least on his watch.
Remember the date: June 12th, 2015, Lincoln Day Dinner – LCRP, Kris “Tanto” Paronto, speaking. Lory Student Center, CSU. Find out what a difference it could have made.
Our meeting on February 28 2015 at Cheesy Lees Restaurant to hear Sheriff Justin Smith speak on “Threats to American Homeland” went extremely well. The Sheriff talked for about 35 minutes and then answered questions for another 50 minutes. He did a great job and was thanked by all those attending. The weather cooperated with sunshine and a few clouds. Cold but no snow! We want to thank all of you that came. By best count, we had 136 people. And as you can see the usual suspect returned to the scene.
Does the Republican Party really belong to its grassroots activists, the so-called rank and file, or does it belong to political machines, party lawyers, crony capitalists, and Washington D.C. consultants? That is the question facing the Colorado Republican Party Central Committee on March 14, 2015 when the Committee convenes to elect its next Chairman and party officers for two year terms.
The question keeps rearing its ugly head and did so again in a very small, poor, southern Colorado county that only has 300-400 Republicans in the entire county. Also involved is a retired, 69 year-old woman named Carole Naro who dared to step on the royal toes of the current Colorado Republican Party Chairman, Ryan Call. [For another story of the state party machine crushing the grassroots see the story of Dan Green]
You see the Costilla County Republican Party (CCRP) was essentially a dead party organization with all of its officers having previously resigned in 2013, with Naro herself as treasurer, resigning in February 2014 because of an apparent lack of interest by anyone in the county to continue operations. As a former New Yorker with a strong sense of perseverance, however, Naro on her own initiative decided to revive her county’s Republican Party and directly notified over 60 registered Republicans, whose names were maintained in the CCRP files, as well as placing 6 public notices in the county that she was going to conduct a regular county party organizational meeting within the timeframe set by state law for all county parties to hold such meetings. The purpose of the organizational meeting was to elect their officers and take care of any other party business. Significantly, county party officers each have a vote at the upcoming March 14 Central Committee meeting.
Prior to Naro’s meeting, no one, including the state party or its Chairman, felt the need to conduct any formal vacancy meetings or get involved in any meaningful way in rebuilding the Costilla County Republican Party.
So on February 11, 2015, Naro held her organizational meeting and only three individuals showed up. Naro and the others voted themselves officers, completed the required forms, and notified the state party office of their actions, as all county parties are required to do.
Significantly, no one from Costilla County objected to Naro’s meeting, yet strangely, upon receiving notice of the results of this election, Chairman Call decided unilaterally and without consulting anyone in Costilla County that he was going to hold his own Costilla County organizational meeting—despite the fact that Naro had just claimed to run an organizational meeting and elected officers.
Naro registered an objection with the state executive committee to holding this new organizational meeting and asked the Chairman and the committee to recognize the results of her meeting and cancel the second, organizational meeting. After refusing to allow Naro to personally tell her side of the story and give her version of the facts, and after Chairman Call laid out his version of the facts and stating what he says the law requires, the executive committee concluded that Naro was not authorized to call any such meeting, and that only Ryan Call could now reorganize Costilla County under the state party bylaws.
While the state party Bylaws give authority to the state party Chairman to call a meeting and appoint officers of a county central committee in the event of officer vacancies, there is nothing in the Bylaws that necessarily restricts another registered Republican from attempting to reorganize the party at a regularly scheduled organizational meeting within the statutory timeframe to elect its officers, even if there was a prior officer vacancy. Certainly any technical deficiencies could have been waived by unanimous vote or at least addressed by others in Costilla County who may have objected. Nor does state law provide direct guidance on the issue.
Some have questioned whether the Costilla County bylaws come into play. According to Chairman Call himself, because the CCRP was “dissolved”, those bylaws were no longer effective. Any failure to comply with those bylaws by Naro would not be relevant from a strictly legal perspective. Regardless, Naro notified a significant number of CCRP members on file, including those who ultimately won officer positions after the second organizational meeting. It was well within the purview of the executive committee to consider these exceptional circumstances and resolve the issue in a fair and open manner, allowing the CCRP the freedom to conduct its own business.
The reality is that the CCRP was in a unique situation where reasonable arguments could be made with respect to what the bylaws require. The bottom line is that Chairman Call and the executive committee could have simply let the Costilla County Republicans alone to run their own county organization and resolve any disputes with regard to leadership (which there were not any) by themselves. Nevertheless, with the exception of Vice-chairman Mark Baisley and Secretary Lana Fore both of whom supported Carole Naro, the committee once again deferred to the will of Chairman Call and refused to recognize the results of Naro’s meeting.
And what makes the entire situation even more questionable is that only two weeks out from the March 14, 2015 state chairman election, Chairman Call managed to find 23 people to show up to a state party-paid steak dinner in a blizzard, after he admittedly couldn’t find anyone to participate in county party governance for the prior two years. He also managed to get himself elected chairman-pro-tem to run the March 1 organizational meeting (when Ms. Naro in fact was asked and encouraged to run the meeting by the state executive committee), appointed the Democrat Clerk and Recorder to run the teller committee (after telling the executive committee that she was only there because she has to certify the results), and then succeeded in getting an individual who did not participate in county politics for two years elected Costilla County Chairman over Carole Naro by a fairly wide margin.
Rather than helping Carole Naro and giving her the benefit of the doubt, and taking the time to conduct a basic investigation into what happened in Costilla County, Naro was ignored and put on the defensive. After the Chairman and many members of the executive committee spent their meeting looking for anything and everything Carole Naro did wrong in holding her meeting, and despite the technical defects of the Chairman’s own call for an organizational meeting, Carole Naro became the bad guy—Ryan Call the hero. Chairman Call became the savior from Denver who was going to help the ignorant bumpkins of Costilla County fix the mess they created, and treat them to a nice steak dinner on top of it. See video of portions of this second organizational meeting here.
Naturally, as is often the case, Chairman Call misses the big picture. The story of Costilla County is not about technical bylaws and statutes; it is about a heavy-handed Chairman not only unwilling to help an energized grassroots activist revive an essentially dead Republican organization, but to make sure she was shut down and marginalized in order to make way for himself to come in and reorganize the county party as he saw fit. And not to mention the obvious appearance of chicanery when he calls an unnecessary meeting to elect officers that will have a vote in his own reelection bid in two weeks that could have been conducted at any point over the last year. And people wonder why the base of the Republican Party is defecting and registering as independents in droves.
It’s like the biblical story of David and Goliath, except this time Goliath won. It is time for a new Party Chairman.