The overwhelming feeling about the GOP and by extension the RNC post election is disdain. It’s not that the GOP party is so bad, it’s that it’s infested by the establishment Republicans, RINOs if you will. These are the people who are in politics for themselves, not the country. They’re the ones that say all the right things during campaign season, then once in office they either disappear or turn out to be soy fed, weak-kneed, “get alongs”. The establishment (GOPe) get into “the club”, then immediately forget their job. They “vote their conscience”, believing they’re ruling plebs rather than governing by representing the will of their constituency.
Since 2016, The Establishment has been in denial about how most people feel about the party. They believe that since 80 million people voted Republican this cycle, that they’re behind the GOP and RNC. That couldn’t be farther from the truth. What they don’t understand is the majority of people voting Republican are conservative populists. The Establishment fails to grasp that populism is gaining steam, the movement is on fire, and it’s here to stay. Unfortunately for the uniparty, their worst nightmares are coming true. The populists on the left and the right are coming together based on common ground. People are no longer willing to be controlled by the ruling elite in the U.S. Need more convincing? Take a look at Liz Cheney in Wyoming, or GameStop in the stock market. The people are fighting back.
Within the last week it has basically been decided that establishing a new political party is not the most effective path forward in order to fight the elites. The infrastructure and the organizational might of the GOP and RNC would take too long to replicate and overcome during the heat of battle. So fine. The GOP it is. But, it’s not going to be the same old GOP, and 80 million voters will be damned if they’re going to go along with the GOP as it is now. If the GOPe continues to believe they are the party, perhaps it will finally sink in when donors send the strongest message with their dollars.
The question becomes, how do we change the party? How long will it take? What can we do?
The good news here is the time is now, there is a lot we can do as individuals, and it can happen within the next 45 days. Let’s focus on Colorado. Elections are taking place for our local and state GOP representatives. It’s possible that this explanation and action outline is relevant in other states.
Colorado GOP: Background
Examples of the functions of the Colorado GOP include fundraising, organization, campaign facilitation, candidate selection, endorsements, and spending. Most importantly, the state GOP can represent conservatives using the law, and lawsuits. In Colorado there is a central committee that includes the Chair, Vice Chair and other officials. These positions are elected for two-year terms. Ken Buck, Senator in Colorado is currently the GOP chair. If anyone was an establishment Republican, it’s Buck. Thank goodness he’s not running for CO GOP Chair this cycle.
The process of electing state and local GOP officials is similar to how our national elections are structured. Each county has a branch of the GOP (Boulder County Republicans, Denver County Republicans etc) Each county GOP ladders up to the State GOP (Central Commission). So the local GOP branches are like states, and the State GOP is like the Executive Branch. Within each GOP county organization there is a Chairman, Vice Chair, executive committee etc. These positions are elected for two years. The County GOP branches elect the State GOP officials.
Each county has equal representation consisting of a static number of members who can vote for the State positions (think Senate). In addition each county has a fluctuating number of members who can vote on State representation based on voting turnouts (think House). Once those candidates are elected through a voting process, those representatives act as “electors” in the state contest that ultimately decides who is the state chair of the GOP.
While most of us are absolutely disgusted with the Colorado GOP as an organization right now, we can change it – and fast. It’s all about acting locally and participating as individuals in the GOP election process. Here’s how:
Part One: Participate in Electing Your County GOP Chairman
The process for electing county GOP chair positions is happening now. Really. Now. As a registered Republican in your county, you can participate in electing your County GOP chair. Unfortunately only certain members in the County party can actually vote. But, you can attend the election and perhaps influence the people who vote. It’s your chance to pick the candidate that best supports your views. Consider who’s going to fight for you, if they’re able to organize, mobilize, and communicate well. Will they be active and focused on election integrity? Given elections happen on the local level, this is an especially important issue for County GOP Chairs. Contact your county GOP organization. This link gives you the contact information for each branch, by county. Elections are scheduled on a specific day sometime between February 1-15 (depending on the county). You can get the voting dates from your county GOP.
Part Two: Vote on the State GOP Chair and Vice Chair
During this election process, the county GOP officials that can vote on the State GOP officials are selected. These positions are called State Bonus Members. Any registered Republican in their county can run for a spot. This is where YOU can make a difference. Secure a bonus member position so your voice is heard when it comes to electing the state GOP chair. Starting by contacting your county GOP and submit your name to be a bonus candidate. Your county GOP organization will let you know when the elections are being held (between Feb. 1-15). As a bonus candidate you show up on your election day and convince people to vote for you. PRO TIP: you can ask for the list of voting members in your county. You can call or email them ahead of time. Introduce yourself, talk to them, and ask for their vote.
Something to remember, if you’re living in a large county, there will be more bonus member positions. Larger counties have more sway in the overall election process just like in the House of Representatives (e.g. California versus Minnesota) so it’s really important for those bonus spots in large counties to be won and represented with folks who have an “America First GOP” mindset.
Let’s assume you’ve gotten off the couch, and participated in your local GOP elections. Your county now has a fantastic GOP chair. You are a bonus member able to vote for the State GOP representatives. Who’s on the ticket? Who are you potentially voting for?
As of the publishing of this article, there are two candidates running for State GOP Chair. If any late entrants enter the contest, updates will be made to this piece. Look for additional information on profiles on GOP County Chair candidates from now until 2/15/2020.
State GOP Chair Candidates
Scott Gessler: Former Colorado Secretary of State (2011 – 2015), business owner, election lawyer, veteran. Currently living in Denver. Knows the establishment system. His management style is centralized and top down. He touts himself as a “fighter” and a proponent of election integrity. Slings tough words, but actions don’t always match up as demonstrated by his SoS record and recent testimony in December 2020 at the Colorado State House Audit Committee hearing. Fundraising for the GOP will be a challenge for any Chair for the foreseeable future, Gessler is best positioned with longtime establishment donors. If an establishment player is your preference, Gessler fits the bill.
Kristi Burton Brown: Current Vice Chair of Colorado GOP. Background in constitutional law and policy combined with media and communications. Endorsed by Lauren Bobert. Has a strong vision and detailed plan for revamping the CO GOP to reflect an America First position. Deep grassroots background, talks about representing Colorado citizens with inclusivity. May be less experienced in an executive role. While KBB is familiar with the inner workings of Colorado politics, she has the tone, vibe and energy of an enthusiastic outsider who is ready to make big changes. Those following KBB’s record claim she has “folded” to the establishment on certain issues in the past. It’s worth challenging her on whether or not she has the chops to stand strong and fight – consistently.
County GOP Chair Candidates
Boulder County: Theresa Watson. Going for her second term as BoCo GOP Chair, Theresa has focused her energy on election integrity. She’s successfully challenged BoCo County Clerks to change election laws and policies for the better. Watson’s army of poll watchers, and election judges is impressive as she’s consistently advocated for equal election process access. Adept at working within the system, yet fights like an outsider.
Denver County: A first-time Candidate, Steven Michael Hlavac Jr. is a 25 year old with a ten year history of volunteering and working for the GOP. He believes in supporting the police, businesses and churches. He has ideas for holding our local elected officials accountable, running coherent campaigns, defeating the false narrative surrounding the Republican Party and helping create effective leaders in office. Given election integrity is a key issue for Colorado voters, it’s an outstanding question as to Hlavac’s experience with the election process and officials. Is he willing and able to fight the system?
For more information on how to get involved in your county GOP
One thought on “Overhauling the Colorado GOP: The Time is Now”
One correction, Ken Buck is Representative, not Senator.
Great call to action, and very informative. I’m a bit of a nube, so I learned a lot by reading this.