Can We Finally Put That Whole ‘The GOP Is The Party Of The Rich’ Meme To Bed Yet?

Democrats outspend Republicans 2 to 1 in the 2014 elections. Folks, and members of the media, that money has to come from somewhere. Source: PiPress

The party, in the midst of a decadelong shutout from statewide offices, spent $8.6 million to end the state and federal election drought last year. The Minnesota Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party spent $15 million and kept the GOP from picking off any statewide or congressional incumbents. State campaign finance reports were made public Tuesday.

The DFL slush fund, Alliance for a Better Minnesota alone spent $5.3 million.

Here’s another fun little benefit to being a DFLer running for office. Source: MN CFB AFSCME 2014 Year End

AFSME CFB revenue report 2014 screencap

 

Your DFL supporting attack groups get to claim $1 million in unitemized contributions and no one blinks.

The party of the rich and shadow money is the Democrat Party, not the Republicans. Its time for the press to stop repeating the DFL lies.

Outnumbered: Lobbying Is Killing Our Republic

I actually know some lobbyist. Most of them are good people. Some do play a valuable role of educating people on issues. But like teenage boys, when you put too many of them together without adult supervision, bad things are bound to happen.

There are only 201 Legislators at the Minnesota Capitol. There’s another couple hundred staffers/assistants who work there to help the Legislators. There are thousands and thousands of lobbyists and shadow lobbyists (unregistered consultants & PR folks who do the same stuff as lobbyists but somehow avoid lobbyist filing requirements and regulations) who roam the Capitol, influence Legislators, and sell their various products/policies that range from good ideas all the way to Pandora’s box & snake oil.

We Republican activists, conservatives, Tea Partiers, Liberty, 2nd Amendment, center right, etc etc …. supporters all complain that you endorse someone in March for State House or Senate, and they end up “betraying” us by opposing something that we passed in our party platform or that they promised us during their delegate calling. We send these innocent Legislators to St. Paul and expect them to stay true when surrounded by thousands of people who get paid to get their way.

Don’t forget that on top of the lobbyists and shadow lobbyists, there are tens of thousands of state bureaucrats who also influence Legislators.

But after we endorsed them in the Spring every 2 or 4 years, did we stay in touch with our Republican Legislators? Or did we just expect them to work around our BPOU meeting schedule where we can grill them with a bunch of tough questions about what other Legislators are doing?

They are outnumbered at the Capitol by professional policy pushers for special interests. These people  are not there just trying to push a bad policy, they are there to educate (or spin) the good aspects of bills. They are professional salesman who get paid for results. Most of them wouldn’t be employed if they couldn’t convince people on why a policy should be passed. So they are good at making bad policies sound good. They gloss over bad aspects and hard sell the good points that a politician can use to get reelected.

Point?

If you see what is happening at the Capitol and what the Governor is demanding and are upset or worried, you need to stop complaining and start petitioning your legislators IN PERSON!

Find out who represents you. Call them on issues. Take a day off work and go down and talk to them.

If I had the time, I have always wanted to have a Republican Lobby Day. A day when we try to get all 15,000 people who attend Republican Precinct Caucus to show up at the Capitol and talk to their Legislators of both parties.

We, as a conservative movement, often fall victim to preaching to the choir, in that, we only try to hold our own (Republican Legislators) accountable. We have cases where our activists and figurehead/leaders who may have even had liberal DFL Reps for years, will make it their life’s mission to defeat someone else’s Republican Legislator who only has a 93% “votes with me” rating. Yet this person never bothers to go talk with their own DFL Representative who gets 90% of the votes wrong.

We always get upset when we send Republicans to St. Paul and they let us down, but have we bothered to go down there ourselves to keep them on our side? They see countless people every day trying to twist their arms to support policies we oppose.

Go find out who your Legislators are and go down tot he Capitol to visit them. Even if you have a DFLer!

 

MNGOP Turn Around

The Republican Party of Minnesota paid the final penalty from FEC for the blundering of former leadership.

According to the FEC, former Minnesota GOP chairman Tony Sutton would keep some invoices in his office, preventing them from being entered into the party’s accounting system.

Sutton has denied deliberating concealing the party’s debts. After he resigned in December 2011, invoices found in his office showed undisclosed debts from 2010 and 2011 totaling nearly $250,000.

The complaint was brought by Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington. An earlier complaint by the watchdog group resulted in a $170,000 fine against the Minnesota GOP.

 

Downey To Seek Reelection As MNGOP Chair

Your thoughts?

Dear State Central Delegates:

 

I am announcing that I intend to run for re-election as your Republican Party of Minnesota Chair.

We have regained our footing and even some momentum, but we also have a lot of work to do, and it would be an honor to serve as your State Party Chairman for another term.  I am excited about the gains we can make!

 

A heartfelt thank you to each of you for all you have done, and for the progress we have made together.  We now need to take the next steps, and they are big ones.  And you are the critical component as we build our party from the ground up!

 

I look forward in the coming months to discussing our shared conservative principles and my plan for our next two years in the Republican Party.

 

Thank you for your service to the people of Minnesota!

 

 

Regards,

 

 

Keith Downey

My Congressman Voted For Boehner Today, Now What Do I Do?

So brand new Congressman Tom Emmer voted for John Boehner for Speaker of the House and I wouldn’t have done the same.

Now what?

My choices are,

1) Stay on in CD6 and hope to earn Congressman Emmer’s trust and pass along some wisdom from the inside. Yes, I could run for reelection as CD6 Treasurer and State Executive Committee member and try to change the Congressman’s mind on issues. The truth is there is so much else to fight for in party politics for me. In 2016 we must hold the MN House and retake the MN Senate. Anyone wasting any time on other pursuits in 2016 is a fool and best friend of the DFL. In 2018 we have another statewide war for Guv, US Senate, and such. There’s so much work to rebuild the part from the base up and strengthen it at the CD & State level, surely I could set difference  aside for the greater good…. But should I?

2) Take my ball and go home. Yes, I could walk away from politics altogether because try and try as I might, there is always another person or group that causes you headaches and makes the volunteer work even harder. Meanwhile other people doing the same thing as me (only worse) have figured out how to profit lucratively from it. Why bother? Yes the party work work needs to be done, but why do I continue to bang my head against the wall when some fanboy activist demands the world revolve around them one day and the next your Congressman votes exactly opposite of how you would. Another day a group will siphon off all the volunteers and teach them that listening to a couple guys tell jokes every week or so is doing something. I have better things to do. And frankly this little bit of venting is likely to have already earned me the distinguished status of enemy of a whole list of people and groups.

3) Put my money where my mouth is. Yes, if I am so let down by the people who represent me in Government, maybe its time for me to run. I’m no fan of personal grudge match endorsement battles or primaries, but I’ve had about all I can take. Maybe its time to run for something. And frankly if Congressman Emmer is going to be Boehner’s most reliable vote while compromising with Obama on the destruction of our Country, he is unworthy to represent me. There was no good alternative. I am too busy to know anything about the others who ran. But I do know that had I been sworn in to the 114th Congress, I would have voted for myself.

Sure, the insiders and people who get invited to all those fancy dancy parties  think Boehner is a great and masterful Speaker. Meanwhile the country is in Constitutional and fiscal crisis. The citizen is deemed the security threat. Taxes and regulation are an every day but necessary obstacle to the pursuit of happiness that is so drummed into us Americans that we don’t even bat an eye anymore. We’re at that now or never point.

What does this mean?

I don’t know. I’m open for advice.

Is it worth being just a lowly activist that operatives and politicians take advantage of anymore?

Is it time for me to run for State or Federal office?

Maybe a higher office with in the Republican Party?

Or maybe I should just go be a blissful uninformed voter and no longer care that this country and state are falling apart at the seems under the crushing force of Government?

Some People Just Want To Watch The World Burn – Post Primary Caviling

cavil |?kav?l| verb [ no obj.] make petty or unnecessary objections:

I’m fairly confident some people were rooting for Jeff Johnson to lose last night. Not because they supported another candidate in the Republican Governor Primary, but because they wanted to see the Republican Party and its grassroots activist driven endorsing process to fail.

Jeff Johnson won, and some people are trying to paint “low turnout” on the GOP side as proof the endorsing system is still a failure. The media is also glomming on to this as a way to help undermine Johnson’s chances against DFL Governor Mark ‘Give Me A Minute So I Can Change My Mind’ Dayton in November.

All the focus on failure is on Republican turnout.

2010 GOP
Candidate Totals
OLE’ SAVIOR AND TODD “ELVIS” ANDERSON 4396
LESLIE DAVIS AND GREGORY K. SODERBERG 8598
BOB CARNEY JR AND WILLIAM MCGAUGHEY 9856
TOM EMMER AND ANNETTE T. MEEKS 107558
Total 130408
2014 GOP 
 Candidate  Totals
  MARTY SEIFERT AND PAM MYHRA 38798
  KURT ZELLERS AND DEAN SIMPSON 43991
  MERRILL ANDERSON AND MARK ANDERSON 7008
  JEFF JOHNSON AND BILL KUISLE 55813
  SCOTT HONOUR AND KARIN HOUSLEY 38331
Total 183941

Wait, the GOP turned out 53,000 more voters than in 2010.

I think why you see some people trying to paint the narrative of GOP voter apathy is because DFL apathy has reached toxic levels.

2010 DFL
Candidate Totals
MARGARET ANDERSON KELLIHER AND JOHN GUNYOU 175767
PETER IDUSOGIE AND LADY JAYNE FONTAINE 3123
MATT ENTENZA AND ROBYNE ROBINSON 80509
MARK DAYTON AND YVONNE PRETTNER SOLON 182738
Total 442137
2014 DFL  Totals
  BILL DAHN AND JAMES VIGLIOTTI 4896
  LESLIE DAVIS AND GREGORY K. SODERBERG 8529
  MARK DAYTON AND TINA SMITH 177737
Total 191162

The DFL saw a 251,000 drop off in voter turnout and barely drew more voters than the GOP in 2014.

If voter and most importantly DFL activists and supporters were proud of the work that Dayton and DFL leaders have accomplished in the last 4 years, there would not have been such a huge drop in turnout. We are talking over 50% drop off in turnout. Don’t forget, Dayton won with only 43% in the 2010 General election. An election that as also plagued with low turnout of only 55% overall. AKA: Dayton actually only had 25% of eligible voters want him to be Governor.

RF Flashback: Mr. 25% Governor Dayton- La La La La La La La

The bottom line: Republican turnout was higher than 2010, DFL turnout was down over 50% from 2010.

While Republican turnout was lower then I’d like, the overall numbers reveal to me that the DFL has a huge enthusiasm problem and I sure like Johnson’s chances.

Emmer Hits Ground Running With Key New Endorsements

Tom Emmer earns more key Legislative endorsements in his campaign to replace Congresswoman Michele Bachmann.

The Emmer for Congress campaign released several more legislative endorsements today. Senator Roger Chamberlain, Representative Tim Sanders, Representative Matt Dean, Representative Tim O’Driscoll and Minority Leader Kurt Daudt all gave their full support and endorsement to Tom Emmer’s campaign in the Sixth District. In total, 22 legislators who represent Sixth District constituents have endorsed Emmer.

Emmer said, “I’m so grateful for the support from Senator Chamberlain, and Representatives Sanders, Dean, O’Driscoll and Daudt. Our campaign only continues to grow in support from local leaders like these, and I’m honored to call them part of my team.”

A full list of state legislators follows:

Senator Dave Brown (15)
Representative Tama Theis (14A)
Senator Mary Kiffmeyer (30)
Senator Michelle Benson (31)
Representative Ernie Leidiger (47A)
Representative Bob Dettmer (39A)
Representative Tom Hackbarth (31B)
Representative David FitzSimmons (30B)
Representative Nick Zerwas (30A)
Representative Marion O’Neill (29B)
Representative Joe McDonald (29A)
Representative Jim Newberger (15B)
Representative Jeff Howe (13A)
Senator Karin Housley (39)
Senator Scott Newman (18)
Senator Branden Petersen (35)
Senator Bruce Anderson (29)
Senator Roger Chamberlain (38)
Representative Tim Sanders (37B)
Representative Matt Dean (38B)
Minority Leader Kurt Daudt (31A)
Representative Tim O’Driscoll (13B)

Major new endorsements if you look into their past and geographical base. I’m so proud to see Emmer bringing Republicans together to win. A strong unified force in the 6th District plays a key role to supporting Republicans in the General election and to defeating Democrats on the ballot, which should be any Republican’s primary objective. 

Despicable Marty

Despicable-Me-2Its no secret that I can’t stand Marty Seifert and his antics. I haven’t tried to hide it because I think he displays everything that is wrong with politicians and is not worthy of holding let alone seeking public office. Before the convention in Rochester, I thought he was one of the most selfish candidates around who was willing to do and say anything to help himself no matter the effects on the Republican Party. After Rochester, I feel 150% proven right that Marty Seifert is a Despicable Republican.

After his 2010 endorsement loss, Seifert disappeared for the next 3 years. He only popped up again when his 2014 campaign needed to get started. His dishonest entry into the 2013 State Central Committee straw poll was just the beginning. He organized a write in campaign but claimed he had nothing to do with it. The hints of the same old Marty were clear to people like me.

As the 2014 endorsing campaign dragged out, the same old Seifert was back. Sure he claimed he was a new man and his old tactics were behind him. He blamed his 2010 negative campaign tactics on consultants and his absence from Party politics was due to his job. But he was still spreading lies and misleading Delegates about his opponents and his absence was clearly more about not bothering to help since his name wasn’t on the ballot in 2010 or 2012. His selfishness consumes him.

After witnessing Seifert’s 2014 campaign up to this convention, all of my reservations towards Seifert were confirmed and I still couldn’t stand him or imagine him as the endorsed Republican candidate for Governor. But somehow Seifert managed to make me hate him even more with what he did at the end of the convention.

I went into the convention a supporter of Dave Thompson and Michelle Benson. We fought a long and hard race over the last year. After the 3rd ballot it was clear that it could be a long day and we could have dragged it out so that there wouldn’t be an endorsement. But Team Thompson knew that was not going to be good for the party. We needed an endorsement and Jeff Johnson was worthy of it.

If you heard Sen. Osmek describe the back room happenings while waiting for the 3rd ballot results on Up and At ‘Em this morning, there was a roar in the Thompson War Room, and then Dave emerged with tears in his eyes. I was in that room. We cheered and thanked Dave, Michelle, and their families for fighting a good fight, but for also doing what was right for the party.

I immediately went up to a friend of mine on the Johnson campaign and said, “OK, get me a red shirt.” His eyes nearly popped out of his head and he barged into their war room and dug through boxes to find one for me. I threw it on and went out onto the floor as Dave Thompson took the stage. My headset off, tears in my eyes, it was now time for us to unite behind Johnson. It was time to do what was right for the party.

Dave Thompson gave a concession speech that made me realize that I had been helping the right guy to this point because in the end of the day it was never about Dave or Michelle, it was about us as a party. Thompson withdrew and endorsed Jeff Johnson.

But then Marty Seifert did something despicable.

 

From MPR’s Catherine Richert:

On the third ballot, Seifert had about 27 percent of the vote. Instead of withdrawing as Thompson did, Seifert told the crowd he would be competing in the primary.

He also said his delegates were free to go home.

“Instead of dragging things out, taking your time, keeping you here, I am going to decide that my delegates can be released to go home and go get your sleep,” Seifert said.

Critics said the tactic was meant to shut down the convention without an endorsement.

“Out of respect for you, the delegates, I’m here to say, ‘that was uncalled for,’” said party chair Keith Downey minutes after Seifert made his speech.

Seifert did try to block the endorsement by telling his people to leave. I has Seifert staffers pass by me telling their supporters not to vote and to leave. You see, if the total number of ballots cast fell short of a certain number, even if Johnson did get 60% on the vote, it may have meant the endorsement wouldn’t stand.

Marty Seifert showed his true colors this weekend. Unlike the selfishness of Kurt Zellers and Scott Honour who didn’t even try to run an endorsement campaign and participate in the convention, Seifert did. For reasons I can’t imagine, some Delegates and local party leaders like him and remain loyal to him. Seifert’s ego and self absorption were at war with the Republican Party of Minnesota. Marty Seifert embodies everything that is wrong with politicians.

The selfish act of telling his supporters to leave and dragging out his speech to give them time to depart in an attempt to block the endorsement of Johnson was one of the most selfish and destructive things I’ve seen in my decade of party activity.

Well, Marty Seifert you lost and proved all of your critics right. Jeff Johnson is endorsed. All resources of the Party are now at his disposal, and in my opinion that includes local officers and events.  Seifert’s selfish act raises serious concerns and problems that could result in divisions that could cost us Legislative and CD elections. Will he continue his selfish drive to make it all about himself risking the CD7 Race, picking up State House seats, and electing Mike McFadden over Franken by telling his supporters not to help the party? I’ve already heard he made a threat before the convention that if he didn’t win, he was going to prevent his volunteers from helping the party locally.

I shot this video of Sefiert at a BPOU meeting in April. Seifert tells local Party leaders what to do should he not receive the endorsement. Was he being honest or saying what they wanted to hear?

 

 

Team Thompson Lands Big Player As Finance Chair

Big news from Dave Thompson’s Gubernatorial campaign.

With a week to go before the Republican Party of Minnesota endorsing convention, GOP Sen. Dave Thompson has announced Brenton Hayden, founder of Renter’s Warehouse, as finance chair of his gubernatorial campaign.

Thompson, a state senator from Lakeville, also announced on Friday morning that Ryan Marvin, co-owner of Renter’s Warehouse, has agreed to take on an “active role” in his campaign for governor. Thompson is currently in a six-way race for the GOP nomination to take on DFL Gov. Mark Dayton this fall, but he’s one of only two major candidates promising to abide by the party’s decision next week.

“The competition in the Republican Party is fierce, however Dave has shown he has the sort of backbone and conservative values entrepreneurs like myself really appreciate,” Hayden said in a statement. “Dave has my full support.”

Honour’s New PAC Ad – Less Than “Honest”

Scott Honour’s new PAC “Compete MN” came out with an ad that recycles an Honour attack that he’s been using on his Republican opponents. It recycles the cheap shot Honour has been using on the convention trail regarding MNSure. Honour has been claiming that he is the only candidate who wants to get rid of MN Sure.

If a glowing endorsement of the Honour PAC from Michael Brodkorb wasn’t enough to make you gag…. how about it being pegged by MPR for not being accurate? I know, both are less then credible sources in GOP circles, but even a stopped watch is right twice a day.

Honour isn’t the only GOP gubernatorial hopeful that wants to scrap MNsure.

In fact, it appears the biggest difference between him and most of the candidates is that he would opt to move candidates into the federal exchange over fixing MNsure. To be fair, that would be the state’s only option unless it got special permission from the federal government not to participate in an exchange at all.

The ad touting his campaign gets this one wrong.

Honour’s campaign worked very hard to try to nail down all his opponents as pro-MNSure and even said that his opponents wanted to give Dayton a blank check for MNSure. This of course scored some cheap political points, but was … also lacking in the truthiness department.

I have a saying about political candidates… A candidate willing to say anything necessary to get elected, will do anything once they are elected.

I also know that anyone can give a speech to a room full of Republicans. Its easy to craft a speech to hit all the talking points that they want to hear. Its another thing entirely to have a plan to accomplish something.