Alaska Republican Party Meltdown Continues

Anchorage, AK – Saturday’s meeting of the Alaska Republican Party Central Committee at the Millennium Hotel was marked by more unrest as an elected officer from District 10 was escorted off the premises by police.

Unbeknownst to Daniel Palmer, who was elected at his last District Convention as a member of the Central Committee, Chairman Peter Goldberg reportedly dissolved his district by fiat on Friday before the meeting convened on Saturday.

Apparently the Chair, Vice-Chair and Secretary had vacated their positions.

In a subsequent email, Goldberg maintained that “the Rules give me the authority and mandate that the district should be declared unorganized.”

Palmer maintains he was never contacted, saying he only found out when he arrived. Party policy has always been that any registered Republican may attend as a guest if the requisite fee is paid.

The rub came in when Mr. Palmer decided to record the meeting. According to witnesses, the Central Committee subsequently voted through a temporary measure that would disallow the meeting to be taped.

One member compared the heavy-handed approach of the Central Committee Leadership to “Gestapo tactics.”

When Palmer refused to turn off his video camera, party officials called the APD and prevailed upon Hotel Security to trespass Mr. Palmer, who was subsequently escorted out by Anchorage Police.

Chairman Goldberg has warned Mr. Palmer, “If you come to another meeting with your recording equipment and the body of the membership does not want you to use it, and if you refuse to comply with that directive, you will again be removed.”

It’s hard to imagine what information is so sensitive as to warrant this level of secrecy. Palmer maintains that he is only trying to serve the people who elected him, and he feels recording the meetings is the most effective way to keep them informed.

The incident highlights the deep fissures within the party precipitated by the 2010 Write-In campaign of Senator Lisa Murkowski waged against the party nominee, and exacerbated by the Central Committee’s ouster of duly elected leadership after the Ron Paul contingent won the top leadership posts at the 2012 party convention.

Mr. Palmer says his district is mobilizing for an emergency meeting to redress the situation.

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