On the one hand, the Minnesota Republican Party has just gone through its worst year since Watergate. It’s way in debt (although reportedly plugging its way back toward daylight), it’s pretty completely out of power, and its influence outside the conservative Second, Third and Sixth districts is at a low ebb.
Stepping into – or over, really – that mess came Marianne Stebbins and the Minnesota “Ron Paul” campaign. They played the caucus system like Yo Yo Ma plays the cello; they organized people down to the BPOU caucus level with a level of Operational Security cloaky-daggerism that’d put the Irgun Zvai Leumi to shame. They won most of the BPOU and CD level offices throughout the state, and…
…accomplished, arguably, their only true mission; they sent delegates to Tampa to vote for Ron Paul; some of ’em were already bagging out on the Non-Paul parts of the party before the confetti was swept up.
To which some “establishment” Republicans replied “We need to eject all the Ron Paulites from the party!” – to which many others responded “well, not so fast”. While some Ronulans were, indeed, at the party to stump for “Doctor” Paul and nothing else, others – particularly in many 4th CD BPOUs – worked hard with non-Paul Republicans to field good solid campaigns and create GOP activity in areas that hadn’t seen any in recent years.
More on that next week, I think.
Some Republicans – on both sides of the Ron Paul / Non Paul divide – divided the dispute up into “Builders” – people on both sides whose goal is to turn the MNGOP back into a vital force again – and “Destroyers”.
Oddly, a Facebook page called “MNGOP Builders” is, paradoxically, doing a bit of destroying; it’s picked at an awful lot of scabs, especially in the 4th CD (which just removed its chair elected last April on a Ron Paul-movement-approved slate that threw him bodily under the bus as the wheels came off his administration) and CD5 (which elected a slate of Ronulans that have essentially shut the party down in the district). Oddly, in the battle between “Builders” and “Destroyers”, “MNGOP Builders” is doing plenty of “Destroying” itself.
Now that’s meta.
My friend, Nancy LaRoche – of True North, Freedom Dogs and a longtime CD5 GOP activist – broke the story of the vandalism in CD5.
So to sum it up: A party with little money got taken over by a movement with little popular traction, which took over a couple of districts with no GOP tradition (which led the GOP to perform better than expected in a number of districts with little GOP hope – again, more next week), which led to them being attacked by a Facebook Page with no identity and a lady with nothing in her record as an activist to be ashamed of, which led to a counterattack by a District Vice Chair with a long record of activism but representing a slate with little to show for its’ ten months in office, which led to a counterattack by Nancy, who has little patience for this kind of thing.
I think that covers it.
Me? I’m going to find some Republicans – regardless of who they supported for President – who want to focus on the real enemy.
The Saint Paul City Committee.
No, that’s a joke. The real enemy is the DFL who, in case you haven’t noticed, are hard at work f****ng up our state.
And in the GOP right now there are a slew of factions: the Ronulans, the Tea Partiers, Fiscalcons, Socialcons, “Moderates”, pragmatists, Security Republicans and a few others. And none of them – not even the Ron Paul faction – are strong enough to both change the party and win elections. None.
One way or another, this party is going to be run – and this state is going to be saved – by a coalition of people from any and all of those factions who are focused on getting stuff done.
Or, y’know, not; it’s entirely possible the GOP will be taken over by people who argue to the death over the inconsequential as the state follows Greece and Portugal and California straight to hell.