Santa Barbra Republicans have chosen a new leader that promises to focus their party on economic issues, not divisive social issues.
The new leadership in local parties got me thinking about the state budget and the difference between settling and serious goal setting.
Currently it takes a 2/3rds majority to pass a state budget that includes
fees tax increases, which is different than most states. Many Republicans like this because this normally guarantees their ability to shape the budget to a certain extent.
But I don't think I like things that make Republicans give up on trying to win control of the legislature, not because it makes it too hard for taxes to be increased, but because it makes some Republicans satisfied with the small influence that they have in Sacramento. Republicans seem to have given up on ever actually being in the majority again. And why shouldn't they give up? Even if they got a majority they might not be able to pass a budget either.
But if they could pass their own budget with a simple majority taking over the legislature seems like a more important goal. It might take some conservative Democrats to cross over but I don't think it is impossible for Republicans to win in California.
So, what do you say Republicans? Do you want to follow leaders with no plan to become the majority party or are you willing to take a chance on party leaders with a new vision? A vision of becoming the new majority party?
Say what you will about the ethics and personal charisma of Newt Gingrich he didn't have a loser's mentality. It took him years to do it but he organized the take over of the House by Republicans for the 1st time in 1994 since the era of Dwight Eisenhower! If you have party leaders with no plan to attract enough people to become the majority party in California, elect new leaders or run yourself.
No matter what party we support most of us recognize that competitive elections benefit all of us. When a party grows complacent corruption and special interest politics are going to grow.
Republicans: California needs you to stop settling for a few seats in the legislature and to come up with bold plans and new candidates that can attract new voters to your party. It is in all of our best interests. It isn't for me to lecture you too much about not becoming the party of Sarah Palin in California ( if you think it will work then go for it!) or what conservative principles to give up on, but if your leaders don't have a plan to change we are all in trouble.
This isn't about passing a budget this year, raising taxes this year, or any of that. What I am really interested in is knowing if Republicans are coming up with a long term plan to put control of the legislature in play.
Republicans, do you plan to be in the permanent minority or are you planning to change the game up?
Santa Barbara Republican Party Elects New Chairman
P R E S S R E L E A S E
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 10, 2008
GANDRUD TO FOCUS ON ECONOMIC ISSUES
Last night saw big changes for the Santa Barbara County Republican Party, with several positions changing hands on the Executive Committee during an organizational meeting that was held in the Pico Adobe at the El Presidio de Santa Barbara State Historic Park .
Gregory Gandrud was unanimously elected Chairman, following outgoing Chairman Monte Ward's announcement that he would not be seeking re-election to the top Republican position in the county. As an accountant and former Carpinteria City Councilman, Mr. Gandrud is well known as a strong proponent of limited government and fiscal responsibility. Most recently Greg was the Republican candidate for the 35th district State Assembly seat.
"Greg recognizes the need for our local party to re-shape its image and promote ideas that can attract new members," said Executive Director Cory Bantilan. "We need to be at the forefront of economic issues and Greg will make that a top priority."
Also elected to the Executive Committee were Debbie Thompson, who replaces Mr. Gandrud as Treasurer, Scott Burns, and Frank Hotchkiss. Mr. Burns moves into a new role as Secretary while Mr. Hotchkiss will retain his position as Director of Communications. Presiding over the ceremony was Superior Court Judge Clifford R. Anderson, who swore in elected members to a two-year term.
The Santa Barbara County Republican Central Committee meets on the third Wednesday of every month in Buellton.