I find it disappointing that a faction inside the MDGOP has decided that the best path forward for the party is to call for the resignation of Alex Mooney and the Executive Committee.
There is no doubt that last Tuesday was disappointing. Not so much in terms of candidate losses, we all expected Roscoe Bartlett to go down and though I personally respected and admired Dan Bongino his loss to Ben Cardin was hardly unexpected, but in terms of initiatives. It is unfortunate, but when you lose elections and your Senate caucus is a victim of Stockholm Syndrome bad things happen.
In all honesty, there was little that the MDGOP could do about either Question 4 (in state tuition for illegals) or Question 7 (table games in Maryland). The answer to 4 was nearly a foregone conclusion and 7 was so heavily funded from outside the state that nothing the GOP did would have made a difference. Question 6 (gay marriage) was widely supported with the MDGOP. The fact that RedMaryland did not take a position on the question was due to the fact that there were supporters of Question 6 among us… though not me. I was sort of shocked to find failure of Question 6 among the bill of particulars laid at Mr. Mooney’s feet as his critics, themselves, did not in most cases support Question 6. In a nutshell, that is problem Mr. Mooney has faced throughout his tenure.
I don’t know what could have changed the outcome of Question 5 (redistricting) as Democrat voters guides recommended voting to keep the gerrymandered districts. If Barack Obama carried Maryland in double digits it is hardly a shock that the Questions supported by the Democrats also passed.
Out of the smoking wreckage of this came a call for a “vote of no confidence” on Alex Mooney. A cursory look at the names of those pushing it tells you much of what you need to know about the real agenda. In Frederick County, it is the supporters of the unlamented Charles Jenkins doing the heavy lifting. This is little more than at middle school mean girl’s clique lashing out at someone they don’t like and using a rather expected curb stomping on Election Day as the reason.
What makes this episode so pathetic is there isn’t even a hint of who the clique pushing this profoundly bad idea has in mind that isn’t a previous unsuccessful functionary of the party apparatus who would be retreaded to fail yet again.
Not to make excuses for anyone but MDGOP chair is hard. Because of the utter neglect by Alex’s predecessors we have a shrinking caucus and most of the Republics we elect are eager to go along with the Democrats in Annapolis in order to snatch a few crumbs from the floor under their master’s table. Because we don’t fight, we don’t win. Because we don’t win, we find it hard to raise funds. Poor fundraising leads to poor candidate recruitment and poor results on election day. Two years is hardly enough time to render judgment on Mr. Mooney’s tenure.
Absent a superlative replacement, and there is no one likely to take the chairmanship that equals Mr. Mooney’s qualifications much less exceeds them, I don’t see what we gain from a civil war in the party when 2014 and elections for the General Assembly is on the horizon.
This is a bad idea that will result in nothing good, but we are the Maryland GOP and that is our nature.