March 14, 2015

Colorado GOP Reboot

Colorado Republicans met in Castle Rock today for the party's bi-annual ritual of electing its leadership team. Chairman, Vice-Chairman and Secretary positions were at stake. I am pleased to report that the sitting Chair, Ryan Call, was displaced by challenger Steve House.

Like Winston Churchillís 1945 loss after winning World War II, Ryan Call lost his re-election bid for State GOP Chairman this morning to former gubernatorial candidate Steve House. While both sides claimed they had the votes to win, it was House who pulled out the victory with 237.66 votes to Callís 179.33 votes. House received 57% of the vote, and congratulations across social media.

And a surprising outcome, for its decisiveness if not its conclusion, had Derrick Willburn winning the Vice-Chair race on the first ballot in a crowded field. Derrick received 203 votes compared to 88, 65 and 44 votes for three other formidable candidates, passing the majority threshold of 201.5 by just 1.5 votes. (All county co-chairs each cast half-votes.) So each of us who voted for Derrick can basically consider himself "the deciding vote."

Derrick's message of outreach to urban voters of color resonated with the county party leaders and bonus members who seized on his offer to lead the effort to bring voters of color home to the Republican party from a Democrat party that always promises but never delivers any improvements in their lives. Derrick will be a great partner for Chairman House, who said:

"Denver and Boulder are where the biggest opportunities lie for growing the Republican tent. We must open the doors to new voters who are just waiting to enjoy the prosperity and freedom that only our party can deliver."

Finally, the new party Secretary Brandi Meek represents youth, women and the rural western slope. Together these three new leaders are certain to take Colorado Republicans in a far different - and I think far better - direction than might otherwise have been.

Politics Tea Party democracy Posted by JohnGalt at March 14, 2015 8:17 PM

Great Day for Colorado. Thanks, County Chair!

Posted by: Jk at March 14, 2015 9:43 PM

Is it too much an "inside baseball" question to ask what was wrong with the old guard?

Posted by: nanobrewer at March 15, 2015 10:59 PM

I wondered the same thing nb, when I got involved with the party and found everyone upset with him. He drew a full-time salary and didn't give money to candidates who could have used it, mostly. He dismissed the liberty wing of the party and maintained an open feud with many of them. He did many things behind closed doors and didn't answer questions forthrightly. He also, now infamously, set us an "Independent Expenditure Committee" for the CO GOP that was supposedly separate from the party and therefore able to spend money like a PAC. But the party pays the IEC's legal bills. And the IEC paid a consultant big bucks, then that same consultant was convicted of fraud or some such in Virginia. Call was accused of back room dealing and spending money to defeat Republicans he didn't like in primaries.

Basically, it's a long list that almost everyone can find something to be mad about.

Posted by: johngalt at March 15, 2015 11:59 PM

I'll be Mister Positive! Without attacking Call for anything specific, I suggest that it was time for a change to allow the liberty wing to spring up and change a somewhat sclerotic state party apparatus.

Okay, that wasn't too positive, but I got to meet House during his gubernatorial campaign and was mightily impressed by his background, integrity, and dedication to liberty principles. I'd've picked House over anybody.

The best defense of Call was his success in 2014, but there were suggestions that he could have helped in a couple House races and chose not to; control of both chambers was within grasp.

I get weary of Tea partiers demanding scalps qua scalps, but this was a good one. I wish Mister Call a long and happy life, but I congratulate House and the assembly that elected him.

Posted by: jk at March 16, 2015 11:20 AM | What do you think? [4]