Strengthening our party should be a major priority, especially after the devastation of our recent national elections. Not only does the GOP need to increase numbers, but revamp itself. A recent Scott Rasmussen poll shows that, nationwide, almost two thirds of party members feel leadership is out of touch with its base. Prior to the poll, but affirming its revelation was the election of fresh, new leadership at the 2012 Alaska GOP convention.
We should be striving to attract people of conservative values, outstanding character and action. However, our national and state-level old guard continually demonstrates behavior that, out on the street, causes distrust, disgust, and disdain. That well-earned “dissing” distances people of character, for what upstanding citizen wants to get anywhere near the dirt of self-serving manipulations and Boss Tweed-style despotism generally associated in the public mind with our entrenched leadership?
Past and acting Alaska GOP head, Randy Ruedrich and his associates play right into the hands of the leftist news spinners and editorialists. His arbitrary flexings of power and skilled, but underhanded procedural manipulations are magnified by the liberal media, assuring a lot of wonderful potential new Republicans that, “Yep, it’s just as I thought: Alaska’s Republican leadership is corrupt. I either need to stay clear of organized politics altogether or find a cleaner group”.
I ask these questions: was the Republican State Convention registration and vetting—right while Mr. Ruedrich presided—carried out according to party rules? If so, did all attendees have the right to run for office? Under his close watch, did everyone running have the same opportunity to work the convention crowd and stump from the stage for votes? During his oversight, was the voting conducted in an orderly and by-the-rules manner? Yes, yes, yes, and yes. Where, then, is his legitimate gripe?
Did not the voting reflect that folks were sick and tired of the old guard and its ways? Does not Mr. Ruedrich’s low-handed, sore loser, take-my-ball-and-go-home backlash prove those voters’ very point?
There isn’t enough cheese in all of Wisconsin to go with the post-voting whine being poured and passed around by Mr. Ruedrich and his cronies. In my humble opinion, the very mongers of all that is bad about the Alaska Republican Party, those skilled political connivers who needed to be ousted, were ousted. And the ones were voted in who give strong indications they will prove to be people of integrity who’ll play by the rules and keep their word and obligations.
As a convention delegate I feel Randy Ruedrich has already slapped me in the face by so much as threatening to overturn voting results. Mr. Ruedrich and his fellows obviously have two sets of rules. There’s the set available for all to examine and go by. Then there’s his own under-the-table set he pulls out when play by the open set fails to deliver results according to his will. That he would so arbitrarily disenfranchise half a thousand delegates by willingly robbing those like me of the time, energy, and money we trustfully invested disgusts me to a degree beyond polite description. But what he is doing to tear down liberty and integrity within the party—and ultimately the state and nation—draws even more of my ire because of its broader ruin beyond effects to my own person or to other individual delegates singly.