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Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Opposition Research On Sue Jeffers

Andy at Residual Forces posts Michael Brodkorb's letter and opposition research on Sue Jeffers. Brodkorb also states that Harold Shudlick and John Ulrich were finally given delegate lists and that Shudlick gave his list to Jeffers.

Craig Westover is defending Jeffers on Andy's comment thread:

# Craig Westover Says:
May 30th, 2006 at 4:23 pm

My Pioneer Press column for tomorrow tackles this issue. I think you are mixing two different issues when you talk about Jeffers — 1) Should she be allowed to speak, 2) is she a Republican in principle and should she be endorsed.

On the first question, the Republican Party constitution requires only that a candidate agree that if endorsed, he or she will run as a Republican. With that agreement, the candidate is entitled to a list of delegates and alternates to the convention. Jeffers has said if endorsed, she'll run as a Republican. If Mike Hatch agreed to run as a Republican if endorsed, then he'd be entitled to the list of delegates as well. (Delegate lists are not the same as donor lists, which are available only to endorsed candidates and incumbents not endorsed.) A candidate that is not endorsed is under no obligation not to run in the general election.

The second issue is the one for delegates to decide — should Jeffers be endorsed? The Libertarian Party platform has some very different positions than the Republican Party platform, but I would argue that reducing issues to principles they are very similar and that Libertarian thinking is more in line with the Republican Platform on some issues than is the governor.

Take the gambling plank. The Republican Party opposes the expansion of gambling. A 100 percent libertarian would see that as the state interfering with the Republican principle of the free market and argue that limited government should not make moral choices for individuals. However, a libertarian would absolutely be opposed to a government run or a government partnership casino that was intended to create additional revenue to fix a budget problem caused by too much government spending. I ask, which type of gambling expansion did our governor propose?

Bottom line, Jeffers may lack the political experience and have views on some issues too divergent from the Republican Party platform to be endorsed. That's fine. That's the delegates' decision. Lady Logician makes a valid point. But for the Republican Party, the party that believes in academic freedom, to shut down a candidate over a label, makes us no better than Democrats — perhaps worse because Democrats don’t know any better. Republicans do.

# John D. McCallum Says:
May 30th, 2006 at 5:29 pm

As a member of the State Convention Nominations Committee, the question will be whether there will be actually discussions with the candiates, or if this will be a "White Wash" as was done in the 2004 convention.

Contrary to what everyone thinks, I will not “be a party shill”, but will make my own decisions.

Just a warning, should anyone wish to try in any way to intimidate myself or other members on the nominations committee, as was done to members at the 6th CD, people will find out how a Viet Nam Veteran defends his own rights.

As for Sue Jeffers, I plan to ask some very hard questions, and expect some straight answers, I also expect to do the same to Tim Pawlenty, whether he is our govenor or not. Holding office is not an automatic for earning the endorsement. Or being passed threw the nominations committee with a free ride.

# Craig Westover Says:
May 30th, 2006 at 9:46 pm

Good for you, John. That's exactly the way it should be done.

People are still confusing whether Jeffers should allowed to be a candidate with whter or not she should be endorsed. They are confusing whether strategically she screwed up with whether or not she should be a candidate. Whether or not she originally declared as a Libertarian or a Republican, her message is the same. Is it a message Republicans ought to hear? I understand that about 25 percent of CD2 delegates signed a petition in favor of Jeffers being a candidate (not necessarily endorsing her). That’s a pretty significant level of interest.

If the sole purpose of political parties is winning elections, then by all means, stifle Jeffers — and Krinkie, Buesgens and certainly muzzle David Strom. If parties are actually suppose to stand for something, then maybe we ought to stop acting like Democrat elitists and fight for what it is we believe in. The stadium bill is a done deal, North Star funding is done deal, Q-comp is a done deal — tell me what are the Republican principles at work in those accomplishments? How was the governor's aborted gambling proposal a Republican approach to balancing the budget?

Forget for a second that Jeffers has the label "libertarian" and address her position — just what the hell to Republicans stand for?

All those are good questions. This convention isn't going to be a pleasant one for Governor Tim Pawlenty. He'll have no problems getting the endorsement - but will he be able to excite the base?