Wednesday, January 7, 2009

The Other Chair Election – RNC Chair

This past Monday American’s for Tax Reform hosted a debate held between the six candidates who want to head the RNC. Grover Norquist moderated the event, and he did an outstanding job. I had a trusted Krusty Korrespondent there who provided me with some insight.

The similarities between the debate going on here in Iowa for the RPI chair race, and the debate centering around the RNC race are very similar. In fact some of the questions at the RNC debate were how many “tweets” each has, and how many facebook friends they have. Again, just like here in Iowa, I don’t think these are the things that win elections, and this level of discourse sounds like something you might hear around the lunch table at your local high school. We need to be talking about mechanics not gadgets if you ask me.

Anyway here is my Krusty Korrespondent’s take on the candidates.

Mike Duncan – Current Chair seems to be the national version of Ray Hoffmann. Duncan is now pledging to be an agent of change which one would think is a tough sell for him to make. In his favor however is the fact that the 168 members of the RNC he is seen as one of them could be reelected.

Michael Steele – GoPAC Chairman and former Rudy supporter is hands down the most eloquent speaker of the bunch. However from an Iowa perspective he said some discouraging things about our state’s status during the 2008 campaign which should make us nervous.

Saul Anuzis – The Chairman of the Michigan Republican Party is always on the move and breaks the mold of what many consider to be your average Republican. People like his no-holds-barred attitude, but Michigan is a blue state and also broke the RNC rules which caused havoc in the 2008 nomination calendar. As chair of the RNC would he be enforce the rules against his own state if they attempted to move up again?

Ken Blackwell – Former Secretary of State in Ohio and gubernatorial candidate. Blackwell is also articulate and we all know how important Ohio is to the general election. While Blackwell has been supported by numerous conservative groups, he’s performance wasn’t that great on Monday.

Katon Dawson – Chair of the South Carolina GOP, has turned around his state in a short period of time. Dawson represents the southern conservative, and with South Carolina’s status of 1st in the South firmly in place he probably wouldn’t be hostile towards Iowa. Dawson wasn’t memorable on Monday.

Chip Saltsman – Former Chair of the Tenn GOP, Bill Frists main man, and Huckabee’s campaign manager. Anyone who stereotypes Chip by only looking at his work with Huckabee would be doing themselves a disservice. Chip is young, bright, and has some major accomplishments under his belt, like beating Al Gore in his own state in 2000. Chip did a great job on Monday, but it might not matter. It seems as if the RNC members are going to discount him as a candidate which is unfortunate.

So who will our Committeeman and Committeewoman support? All signs point to Dawson followed closely by Blackwell who is followed up by Saltsman. Both did attend the debate on Monday, which could explain why they were not at the RPI forum on Saturday. I’m glad they were there.

Who would I vote for? Blackwell. Those Ohio guys always seem to have our back and Blackwell is a conservative who shouldn’t bother the moderates in our party.

Vilsack to Commerce?

Seems like it’s an option being explored. We all know that Tom doesn’t have any farm experience, but did come from an Ag state so I was supportive of him in that position. I think Commerce is a real stretch for him.


  1. Kim Lehman, who was censured as the Iowa Republican National Committee Woman, should not have attended the National Committee meeting, nor any other Party function. She is to be held ineffective as per the Iowa State Central Committee's vote. Perhaps the State Committee will wink at her participation because they were only kidding about their judgment of her crimes against the Republican Party, its duly elected Primary candidate, and her general incompetence?

  2. Gopal and Scheffler were at a Funeral on Saturday not at the RNC, Kim may be a different story

  3. 11:26 - Kim is a member of the RNC and the SCC and no legal autority to take her voting rights away. She is our National Committeewoman for through the next national convention. Deal with it, she's not going anywhere.

    11:18 - Scheffler was not at the funeral, Gopal was.

  4. From what I am told, it looked like Scheffler and Lehman were leaning Blackwell. You'd have to ask them.

  5. They are supporting Dawson. It has been reported publicly. You can ask them...or do some research.

  6. Iowa need to give up it's first in the nation status. It is attracting to many under qualified hacks and killing our party. It would also get a bunch of liberal groups out of our state who want to promote their agenda on us every four years.

  7. How about Vilsack to head the CIA? Hahahaha I'm just kidding.

    If only Jack Bauer were available...

  8. Jeff thats crazy.

  9. Jeff you need start rpoof reeding.

    You guys are idiots.

  10. OK Anon, Why is that crazy? Are you one of the overpaid hacks?

  11. We may not have a choice. There's a lot of very po'd states that want to get rid of our first in the nation status. States a lot more powerful than us. We can fight to keep it, but don't be surprised if we lose it in the near future.

  12. I think the guy from Michigan would definitely try to steal Iowa's thunder. Dawson, in South Carolina, surely is happy with their first-in-the-south tradition. Saltsman ought to be the most friendly to Iowa after our state gave Huckabee a win. Duncan seems to be OK with our status, as he was the Chairman last time around and left it the way it is. Blackwell and Steele are the wildcards with regard to Iowa.

  13. Any Iowan who thinks Iowa losing its first in the nation status is a good thing is a damn fool!

    It is not just a political thing it is an entire Iowa economic thing.

  14. don't forget it is also one of the few things the two parties agree on- and look for Obama to also support it next election.
    If we loose it, it will be because of the two we elected to National Committee positions.
    They spew single issues as their priority and are both green. Their acceptance in DC will be the key. I would bet they will fumble the ball and with no alliances left from the past that Steve Roberts built we will loose much prestige and our First status.

  15. Agreed. The president-elect owes all of his success to Iowa, so we aren't going to lose it.

    IF, however, we do lose it, we will have nobody to blame but our national committee man and woman.

    They have nothing to do that's more important than keeping us first. Nothing.

  16. The job of the RNC chairman is not to keep Iowa's first-in-the nation status.

    The chairman's job is to get Republicans elected.

    I'd gladly give up our first-in-the-nation status to get Republicans back in the majority.

  17. One good question is who would the candidates for Chair of the Iowa GOP vote for RNC Chair? The Chair is the 3rd vote in IA.

  18. good question Jeff. When is the vote for RNC chair and will our current or new chair be the 3rd vote for our state?