Monday, September 10, 2012

Tea Party Effect: MI-GOP Moving Back to Its Roots

The MI-GOP convention over the weekend demonstrated clearly that the Republican Party in Michigan is continuing its recent move toward its roots, its foundation. It would be easy to say the party is moving to the right, and, indeed that is the direction they are gravitating towards, but the truth is, they are only going back to where they should be in the first place, back to where the party platform places them.

On Saturday, virtually every candidate running for a spot on the November ballot was conservative, and the most conservative candidates won almost every single time. (The only slot that was arguably not won by the most conservative candidate was Supreme Court, but only time will tell on that one.)

Perhaps the most telling was the race for State Board of Education. Three candidates were vying for two spots on the ballot. In that race, Melanie Kurdys and Todd Courser embarrassed the incumbent by capturing more than twice as many votes from the delegates. Both Todd and Melanie made it clear that they had very conservative positions on the issues. They showed that a true conservative isn't just pro-life, pro-marriage and pro-second amendment. They stood firmly on the side of local control and fiscal restraint. They were not afraid to say the parents need to be the primary educators, not the government, and that throwing money at education is not the solution.

The results from Saturday were the continuation of a trend. In May, Dave Agema, another "take-no-prisoners" conservative defeated the incumbent "old guard" National Committeeman by a greater than three-to-one margin.

Was it the "tea-party" that won these stunning victories? You bet it was, but what needs to be understood by party leadership is that this is no longer a bunch of upstarts and novices flexing their muscles, this is a staunchly conservative group of Republicans who have installed themselves as the majority in the party, and they are not going away.

In many county conventions, efforts were made by the status quo to hold the "tea-partiers" off, to prevent their appointments as delegates, and in many cases, the status quo achieved some success. But, in spite of that, the constitutional conservatives held sway. As a stark example, in the 6th district, where the leadership is mostly controlled by the old guard, the "upstart" Cindy Gamrat, who founded the "Michigan for a Conservative Senate" won the election for presidential elector against a longtime party faithful who everyone assumed would be the 6th district's choice for elector.

In my humble opinion, state party leadership has been put on notice, the constitutional conservative flank is now a force to be reckoned with and come next February, when district and state leadership are elected, they better be listening.


Anonymous said...

very well written thank you jack susan flowers

Jeff said...

The Hofmeister Resolution never got a vote, and many people are ticked about it. In fact, 1500 copies were distributed on the convention chairs only to be plucked out and thrown in the garbage by the state committee. It seems that the base of the party and the state committee are on opposite ends of the spectrum. We had nearly 2000 delegates there and not once did Candice Miller who chaired the meeting ever recognize the floor for anyone to make motions or fulfill their duty to the constituents who sent them there.

Sue Burstein-Kahn said...

Melanie and Todd understand the dangers of Common Core and IB (International Baccalaureate) to our way of life and our nation. This is literally a national security issue, as both of these will undermine the concept of our country as exceptional and unique and promote one world government. If in fact the Michigan Republicans are moving back to their roots, then they should be very concerned. Why? Because, if these programs gain the foothold, then our children (our most precious commodity) will be lost to the liberal left, and the group think of UNESCO and others, and not only our State but our country will be doomed to follow in the steps of what the liberal left (and worse) envision.

Unfortunately, as we focus on National issues, the most important issue, the education of our next generations hits the bottom of the ballot. But these "kids" are the ones who will be making the decisions in 30 - 40 years and the public school educational path we are currently traveling does not look promising.

Anonymous said...

I would disagree that one race was one by the most conservative candidate. Bill Kaufman was running for the UM Board of Regents on a platform that was heavily weighted to national security concerns and serving Michigan families first but Dan Horning won. Dan Horning never voted against a tuition increase during his entire 8 years on the Board from 2995-2002.

Darrell Johnson said...

Right on Target Jack... Amen to that!

Melanie Kurdys said...

Christine's picture on this post is so appropriate. As an "outsider" to this process, she and I were among the few who did not know the results of the election until it was announced on the floor. We are incredibly proud to be among those chosen by the grassroots to be part of the November 2012 Repubican ticket! Thanks all, Melanie