GOP Bylaw Amendments: The 800-pound Gorilla

The Party shall not, without the prior approval by at least a two-thirds affirmative vote of the State Executive Committee, contribute money or in-kind aid to any candidate for any public or party office except the nominee of the Republican Party or a candidate who is unopposed in the Republican primary after the filing deadline for that office. Nothing in this section shall preclude any member of the State Central Committee from personally contributing money or in-kind aid to a candidate in a Republican primary or Party election.

And there it is right there. A potential systemic shift in the way the Maryland Republican Party conducts its elections. With a two-thirds vote of the State Executive Committee, the Party can anoint the chosen one in any primary election it desires.

The Republican Party is, ostensibly, the party of ideas. We are the party of the people. We are the party of individual accomplishment and achievement. Upon passage of this bylaw amendment, we wipe all of that away. Instead of being a party based on principle we become a party based on access, on relationships, and on cliques. Get 26 people to go your way, and the (potential) cash and organization of the Republican Party come with it. It is no longer about ideas, and about support, and about community, but about cash, and contacts, and having West Street on your side.

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And undoubtedly, such a proposal at the state level would then lead to proposals being bandied about at the County level. Given the lack of leadership displayed here in Anne Arundel County, doesn’t that bother you a bit?

The proposal to endorse candidates is wholly inappropriate for any party, much less one that is strives to be a meritocracy. It should and it must be defeated.


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