Friday, January 19, 2007

Kansas Days approaching... Who will be the next KS GOP chairman?


Next weekend is Kansas Days, the annual Republican weekend of fun, policy, and serious soul-searching. Sen. Pat Roberts is the keynote speaker this year, and Sen. Brownback, Reps. Tiahrt and Moran, Treasurer Lynn Jenkins, Sec. of State. Ron Thornburgh, and a slew of other elected officials will be here.

I'm a 3rd District delegate, and so I will have a few 3rd district committee meetings to attend. I'm also an alternate state delegate, which means I may have the opportunity (if there is a no-show) to serve on the state committee and vote in the new GOP state party chairman, the most important function from this 3-day event.

Tim Huelskamp (KS state senator backed by KFL), Mike Pompeo (businessman and longtime party insider) and Kris Kobach (law professor and 3rd district congressional nominee) are all in the running. I propose that the state committee actually consider ramifications for the future of the party and our likelihood of success in upcoming elections when they make their choice (such a novel idea, I know, but it hasn't been considered for the past few years). Huelskamp--nice guy, good, sound credentials, but probably won't bring the party together or energize it. For me, that leaves the choice at Mike Pompeo or Kris Kobach, both of whom have the connections (Mike--KS, Kris--DC) and the drive and energy to take a new route and rebuild the party from the bottom up. Kris has been especially agressive in recent weeks in emailing and lobbying committee members, and his plans for establishing statwide GOTV strategies and a statwide voter database are just small portions of his grand design at revamping the state party. To those who discount Kris because of his failure in the 2004 election against Moore, I say that this may just be the best position for him, and a podium where he can constantly put the Dems on the offensive and make sure we're successful recruiting candidates and serving successfully as a state party.

So I have I decided yet? No, but my choice is definitely between Pompeo (who can unite all factions of the party) and Kobach (who has an ingenius and aggressive plan of action).

It should be noted that a recent Washington Post article compared state GOP parties and Kansas fell behind the Rhode Island and Massachusetts Republican parties as one of the most inefficient, least active, and least organized at recruiting candidates and helping their campaigns. Oh, and our state party has less money than the Rhode Island GOP. Massachusetts is the most liberal state in the nation, Rhode Island is 2nd, yet their state GOPs have more money than the Kansas GOP, in such a conservative state like ours? Our party is seriously dysfunctional, and the new chairman will have a lot of work to do. Most important tasks on the agenda for the new chairman:

1. Recruit promising Republican Candidates
2. Defeat Democrats at all levels
3. Raise $$$
Also, at Kansas Days we should get an idea on who's planning to take back the 2nd District seat in '08 from soon-to-be one-termer Nancy Boyda. Possible mentions: Alan Cobb, Ron Thornburgh, Lynn Jenkins, Lee Tafanelli, and (really?) Phill Kline.

I'll have an update after the convention. And then, for the time being, we can get back to national political, cultural, and foreign events (there's a lot happenin' outside Kansas).


Federalist said...


Thank you for the analysis. If we could locate something that has the statistics you quoted, that would be very useful.

It does seem that we are in serious need of good leadership.


KU Blue said...
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