The above link is where Chairman Salmon eloquently presented his post-election analysis of the state of the local, state and national party distilled from opinions of all the people who volunteered their time and effort to improve our chances in future elections. From those opinions, recommendations were given and were categorized under several headings.
Although all of the themes are what we usually see in classic organizational playbooks of political parties, one item seems to be conspicuous only because of its absence and that is a topic on functional basic party structure. The local party does not seem to have fulfilled this requirement since basic documentation, archiving of records and even proper book-keeping have not been kept for a period of time until very recently.
Proper procedures are very important for proper functioning of any organization. In a business, improper procedures result in loss of business and therefore revenues but in a political party it loses party members and elections. It is well known that in Erie County our registration is lagging, trailing and even losing people, as well as elections. We have not won significant political offices and have lost some with the exception of 2010 when the Tea Party revolution happened. In the recent election (2012) we lost most seats by approximately a two to one ratio in this county.
Along the same line is the inability of the past and current leadership to inspire loyalty and dedication since they constantly thwart every effort to make practices conform to proper procedures that most organizations in the real world follow. It could very well be due to the leadership’s disdain, contempt and patronizing attitude toward its rank and file grassroots or just plain old bull-headedness.
Whatever the reasons may be the result is the same—demoralization and dismay—in the ranks. Rudeness in behavior and demeanor by members of the leadership toward each other, just adds insult to injury. The lack of common decency in inter-personnel relationships, lack of guiding principles and the absence of compliance to commonly accepted conduct leads to a non-productive hostile atmosphere. To top it all there are no procedures or compliance officers to handle problems when they do arise.
I believe that it is important to address these deficiencies and also to prevent and remove those trouble spots and those troublemakers.
One other theme proposed by the chairman was to “broaden the base of the party” by being inclusive of many strata of society, backgrounds, age groups as well as new immigrants and ethnic minorities. We know from the last election that our party lost in all of those subgroups with the exception of “white men.”
As a theme in a manifesto, all of the points appear to be reasonable, doable and inclusive. However on careful examination and knowing the local party situation I know that these are vapid and insipid since there is really no effort being made to accommodate what we have: Let alone improve from our current plight.
I am aware of very few ethnic non-white Republicans who are involved actively with the local party and I have also noticed that the one person–who is contributing his time and energy as a volunteer sincerely, diligently and constantly to further the principles of Republicanism–is being treated shoddily and with contempt. This person happens incidentally to be an immigrant also and imbued with the American Spirit like almost all legal immigrants are. Vile, vulgar and vicious verbal assaults have been launched upon this person during recent days in front of the public during a public event, which was entirely unprovoked. Previously, ethnic epithets had been documented as being used against him.
The attacker, another Republican officer of the party, offered neither apology nor expressed remorse. The perpetrator behaved as though the event is par for the course. This kind of behavior is totally unacceptable and should be condemned. This is the kind of behavior which discourages ethnic minorities from joining our party and helps in the successful branding by Democrats —as the chairman so aptly stated—of this party as being hostile to minorities amongst other charges.
The Democrats do not have a natural right to the ethnic votes that they are garnering in all recent elections—landslide proportions of black, Hispanic and Asian votes—we have lost them by our own misbehavior. The perception among those groups is that Republicans don’t care for them and we are helping them gel in those perceptions.
In the world of politics, perception is reality and we are in a precarious position of tipping over into a permanent minority status in the near future. Time is ripe for a change in local party attitudes toward ethnic groups amongst others if we want to be unbranded.
PS: Here are some thoughts from Black Republicans in Philadelphia and their views which may be useful to open-minded readers.
Jeb Bush and Clint Bolick with Hannity on Fox March 4, 2013: “Republicans Tell Asians “We Want Your Vote, But Don’t Want You On Our Team” (Video)
We need a better message by Samuel A. Rosado: http://www.nytimes.com/roomfordebate/2013/03/06/what-young-republicans-want/young-hispanic-conservatives-want-a-better-message
New club’s not your dad’s Young Republicans: http://www.politico.com/story/2013/03/lorem-ipsum-88606.html
Committeeman Girard North