I may have a unique perspective on this. I know Rich and Beth fairly well. I have worked with both.
Beth and I served on the school board together in Berwick.
Rich and I worked together to promote the welfare reform legislation he submitted in the 124th. Successfully submitting more letters of support and having more live testimony on a bill for the GOP than any bill has had in recent memory. The bill didn't pass committee, but it ignited a level of involvement that had not previously been seen in Augusta.
Beth and Rich both bring solid ideas and a fresh perspective to the position. However, at this time I think it appropriate to select Rich as our next party chair. Beth is a solid advocate for Republican principles and would be a great vice chair to support Rich and the party. This would also allow her to continue to advocate for taxpayers as the Maine Taxpayers United organization.
I pledge my full support for Rich Cebra for Maine Republican Chair.
You make sense Ryan.
Thank you Bob. There is no bad result here, Rich or Beth. I simply think Rich is the right choice for right now. He has the best chance to bring together all parts of the party to unite under one effort. He brings the most draw of support structure to surround himself with folks who can be effective. That isn't to say Beth lacks those abilities, she is a passionate and strong leader. Rich simply brings a wider range of exposure to the organization, in my opinion.
For what it's worth, I spoke to Rich a few days ago and offered him my full and unconditional support as well. I think he brings everything to the table that we need in a party chair, and none of the disadvantages. I will not list them, as Ryan has already done so quite succinctly.
I've been following Rich haphazardly for several years now, from the Cumberland County level and the state house level, and I often hear him on WLOB with Ray. He first came to my attention early in his legislative career when he distributed a written piece on how health insurance reform could save municipalities money, and I saw that most of it was a word-for-word regurgitation of something I had published in a weekly paper. I didn't know whether to be flattered or offended, since there was no attribution. I chose to be flattered.
The best thing Rich ever did was his you-tube video series from the state house.
That speaks well of his potential to embrace and use technology to pull in voters.
But the thing that concerns me about Rich as party chairman is that he is just as prone as Charlie to lock in on these red-meat issues from other states and inject them into Maine politics, creating discord where it's not necessary, and obliterating our message that prosperity requires limited, close-to-the-people, government. With Rich as party chairman, I think we'll have the same sort of "branding" problems we've had with Charlie.
Beth is the better choice. I'm crossing my fingers on this one.
Now that the caucus has chosen the new legislative leaders, which do not include any women ...
The Democrats didn't choose any women for their leadership positions, either.
To Mid-Coast Mainer: The check is in the mail to Scott, with pleasure. I'm a good loser. And I'm also delighted that Ken Fredette is the new House Minority Leader.
Charlie Webster concentrated 90% of his efforts on two things: raising money and recruiting candidates. This discussion ought to pay more attention to these two factors. Victory is not assured by effective public presentation of Republican principles and positions alone.
Gee that would be a positive carry on from past , that wouldn't preclude of the continued vilification of CW.
Does anyone know for sure if the Jones guy being pushed by the DOLPAC people is a candidate for chairman?
True, only too true, but does vilification raise money and recruit candidates?
FLAMM, good point on raising money and recruiting candidates.
But is it too much to ask that the person in that job also present an appealing personna to the public, or else stay out of the public eye?
MaineMom, I'm not sure. Maybe it is. Maybe the ideal chairman (money generator, candidate recruiter, tactician, strategist, philosopher, legislative overlord, and policy wonk) exists only in our dreams.
Maine Republicans will choose their new chairman next month. The candidates are Richard Cebra, a former lawmaker from Naples who was termed out this election, Beth O’Connor, a representative from Berwick who lost her reelection bid last week and David Jones of Falmouth, a Ron Paul supporter and relative newcomer to the party committee.
Come one now FLAMM, Charlie didnt spend just 10% of his time fighting with the Ron Paul supporters, trying to prove voter fraud, and making dumb comments to the press.
Any of you liberty people supporting Jones? I heard his agenda is to force everyone out of the state and county committees that doesn't have Ron Paul tatooed on their forehead, and to put Boyer in as Executive Director.
Do we have a list of who the committee members are and any contact info. ?
Ten percent is close enough, PETER. Not much more than that. What information do you have about what else he was doing? And do you really think that candidate recruitment and raising money are inconsequential?
Charlie was a complete failure as Chairman. This is a results business and he left the party in worse shape than he found it.
We lost seats under his watch, the Republican brand has been diminished because of him, and he WAS the story more times than not.
In just 10% of his time.
You need to put the results in context. There were 52 Maine House members who didn't seek re-election this year, either through term-limits or their own decisions. Democrats put a lot of boots on the ground to grab these open seats.
You also had a popular President seeking re-election along with the same-sex marriage bill. While I have no stats to prove it, I'm guessing more young, liberal people came out to the polls than two years ago. At the same time, many older folks - including disenchanted Republicans who weren't crazy about Romney's nomination - simply stayed home.
Gaining the Blaine House, State Senate and State House for the first time in some forty years hardly counts as a FAILURE!!
Pick at the departing Mr. Webster all you want - be as small about it as you wish... but to deny his fantastic accomplishments is to dull your own credibility.
TRUTH IS... The Dems were taken by surprise in 2010. A post-election review of 2012 donations and spending will undoubtedly prove that Dems went to Mr Pingree-$u$$man... and he gave them a blank check. Or more accurately, a pile of blank checks to fund candidates, party activities, charter busses for the Travel Team Voters (who spent the day registering and voting all across Maine)*, and of course, the "Independent" groups he also funds.
It's a deep, deep hole we're in!
* This is why $u$$man spent north of half a million bucks funding the return of Election Day Registration with NO ID Required!
And Charlie Webster is RIGHT too! There were people walking into small-town polling places by the dozen to register as residents and vote in tiny places where people Really Do know everyone in town. It's NOT racist for someone from New Harbor to see two dozen strangers they've NEVER seen before stepping in to vote and asking "Who the hell are they?" It would be the same reaction whether they were black or white.
2010 was a National wave that Maine benfitted from. 2010 happend inspite of Charlie, not because of Charlie.
If one reads Bill Nimitz today you will see the first thing we have to do in 2014 .
That's right :
Get a Conservative :
Negro( french for black) :
Organic farmer :
Alternative : Lesbian (who doesn't want to be married)
Until then let us focus on future and past accomplishments not negatives of one person who did a lot.
Hi All, I have decided to run for GOP party chair and I hope to have your support in the future bringing all Republicans to the table. Here is a video of me reading the letter that I sent to the state committee.
A Message from Beth O'Connor
PETER, Charlie just happened to be chairman when Maine's Republicans benefited from a national wave in 2010, but he is solely responsible for the loss in 2012? You know his mistakes but have no clue about what he accomplished or what he did.
I know some of the successful candidates he recruited and helped elect. Do you acknowledge a single one? Do you even know who they were?
Beth, someone told me that if you are elected chairman, you intend to make Eric Brakey the Executive Director. Is that true?
Apollo, have you ever met Eric Brakey? If not, I suggest you call him and go out for coffee.
Could you clarify your statement Roger?
I think he intended it for me Bob. But anyway, I was told that by a state committee member and it's a legitimate question.