This quote is attributed to Plato:
One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors.
He was correct. With conservative participation in our congressional primary elections at less than ten per cent in most cases, no wonder we have our “inferiors” governing us. The same is true as to our political party, the Republican Party. Are you participating in it where you live?
In 2007 I got involved in party politics. The border situation was getting out of control and it did not seem the Republican Party in my state, Arizona, was doing enough about it. So I decided to do what I learned in my Civics class back in junior high in public school in Wisconsin back in the late 1960s. I called the county Republican chairman, found out what monthly committee meeting I needed to go to, and went.
And what I found was that here in “Goldwater Country,” the Republican Party, where it ought to be strongest, was weakest. Over two-thirds of the precinct committeeman slots in my county were vacant, and it was like that all across the state. Then Obama got elected. I decided to try to recruit conservatives to unite and organize politically inside the best political tool for defeating the Democrats — the Republican Party itself. The Party apparatus. Because precinct committeemen ARE the Party. Please read on.
So, what does getting “involved in party politics” mean?
It means becoming a voting member of the Republican Party.
What does that mean?
It means getting into a “voting member slot” of the Party so one can actually vote for the Party officers. To change the Party from within.
Here in Arizona that means filling one of the precinct committeeman (“PC”) slots of the Party in my precinct. The way it works in Arizona, by statute, each recognized political party gets at least one PC slot and then one more for every additional 125 registered voters of the party residing in the precinct. So, roughly, less than one percent of the registered Republicans run the party machinery. And, when less than one-half of the allotted slots are filled, less than one-half of one percent of the registered Republicans are running the party machinery. And that’s the way it is now in Arizona and in just about every state.
Let that sink in. Less than one-half of one percent of registered Republicans actually controlling the leadership of the Party.
Don’t you want to be one of those Republicans?
There’s about 400,000 of these Republican PC slots across all of the country’s voting precincts. And all estimates point to the fact that about half of the slots are vacant. Let that sink in. Think about what an opportunity that presents for conservatives. More below.
My current precinct has twelve precinct committeeman slots. Twelve were filled for the 2012 election cycle and we managed, with just a few hours of work each, to get almost 87% of Republicans to the polls in the 2012 election cycle. Here’s how we did it. Just a little bit of strategic planning and execution of the plan.
So, how did I achieve “voting member” status, and why is it important?
Well, attaining the status wasn’t hard. In Arizona, where I live, all one has to do to become a voting member of their political party is fill out two forms, one an affidavit that says you live in your voting precinct, and another with the signatures of no more than ten registered voters from your precinct, either voters of your party or voters who are “independent.” Fill out that paperwork, turn it in to the elections department by a deadline in May, and then you will be on the primary ballot in your precinct for one of the available precinct committeeman slots in your precinct. I got appointed to a vacant slot in 2007; I became an elected committeeman in 2008. And, if you fail to get the signatures, you’ve got two weeks to fill out a write-in nomination paper and affidavit; all you have to do is fill out this one-page form stating you live in your precinct, have your signature notarized, and then turn it in to the elections department before the deadline. If the number of candidates is equal to or less than the number of slots (very likely, as only about half of the slots, on average, in Arizona, in any given precinct, were filled after the 2012 primary election), you will win by default. Otherwise, a contested election is held just like any other — those who receive the most votes via the ballot win the seats.
In Arizona, there are no dues to be a PC. If you want to donate money to your local committee, you do so. No one can tell you to do a thing as a PC, as you are a pure volunteer. If you want to participate in the meetings and in the other activities, you are free to do so. The PCs are “top dog” in the Party — no one can tell them what to do. PCs ARE the Party. The Republican Party is a voluntary association.
So, why is it important for conservatives to become PCs where they live?
Here’s one reason: Republican Party precinct committeemen, and ONLY precinct committeemen, elect the leadership, directly or indirectly, of ALL of the Party officers, from the local level, to the county level, to the state level and even the officers of the Republican National Committee.
Why am I writing about this today? Because of this headline and article:
On Saturday’s broadcast of MSNBC’s “Up w/Steve Kornaki,” former Republican National Committee chairman Michael Steele said there was push for outgoing-Majority Leader Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA) to head the Republican National Committee after he leaves office in January.
So, who elected the Republican Party National Committee members — the Repubicans past Chairman Michael Steele says might elect soon-to-be-former Rep. Eric Cantor to the Chairmanship? Well, indirectly, according to the Rules of the Republican Party, the precinct committeemen in every state elected those National Committee members, because they elect the electors who elect the National Committee members.
If conservative “political activists” want to have a say in who runs the Party at the National Committee level, then they must become “political activists” inside our Party by becoming “voting members” of the Party at the precinct level. It is the ONLY way to change the Party. Blogging won’t do it. Donations won’t do it. Rallies and marches won’t do it. Emails, letters, and yelling at incumbents at town hall meetings won’t do it. The ONLY way to change the Party “leadership” is to elect better leaders. And the only way conservatives can do that is by becoming precinct committeemen. The only reason our Party leadership is not “conservative enough” is because there are not enough conservatives “inside” the Party as PCs electing conservatives to the leadership slots.
Here are two graphics that explain this. Study them, please.
Will conservatives ever figure out that their highest priority ought to be taking over the BEST political tool for defeating the progressives — the progressives both inside the Republican Party and in the Democrat Party?
The Neighborhood Precinct Committeeman Strategy works. It’s just common sense in action. But it’s only a theory until enough conservatives unite and organize where they live to become “voting members” of the Party in their own precincts and on their own local Republican Party committees. Will you help make it happen? Will you become a precinct committeeman where you live? Will you recruit other conservatives where you live to do the same?
Here’s an explanation of how it works in Arizona.
The local Party committee should help you with getting the forms. Mine did. In theory, yours should, too. But, if the local Party committee is run by moderates, they might not help you. So, figure out the process without their help by going a different route. Ask other Republicans you know. Call your state committee. Don’t give up. You’re a resourceful American, no? Get it done. If you run into roadblocks, contact me at coldwarrior1978 at gmail dot com.
There’s no cavalry coming to save you. You have to save you. We can do it together at the ballot box.
Brat’s victory over Cantor in the primary proved that.
Another explanation of the PC Strategy is contained in Richard Viguerie’s new book, “Takeover.”
Another, from here in Arizona. Please follow the links in the article, and the links in the linked articles, for more information and evidence that the PC Strategy works.
To elect better people, we have to make sure they win the primary election. The BEST way to help the best conservative candidates win the primary election is to get as many conservatives into the precinct committee ranks to help those candidates get out the vote in the all-important, traditionally-very-low-turnout primary elections.
It appears that’s what Brat’s supporters did.
But this strategy only works if enough conservatives actually get “inside” our Party where they live.
The best way to significantly increase turnout in a primary election, in my humble opinion and experience, is to reach out to those lower-information, lower-propensity Republicans who will vote for the conservative if given a reason to get to the polls. That is, it’s explained to them, by a friendly fellow Republican and neighbor, via a personal phone call (these days usually resulting in a voice message) and then followed up with a personalized message on a sample ballot already filled out with recommended votes, and accompanied with the flyers of the conservative candidates, that their vote will make a difference and they can make an informed vote. All of that helps gently “nudge” these types of voters to the polls because they’ve been reminded how vitally important their vote is, especially in the usually-very-low-turnout primary elections, and they’re armed with information on how to make an informed vote.
The only voters who pay attention to the robo calls, the TV ads, the radio ads, the signs and the mailers are those who pay attention to politics ordinarily. The lower-information, lower-propensity voters don’t pay attention to these things — that’s why they are lower-information, lower-propensity voters.
It appears Brat’s campaign did a good job reaching out to additional voters, as the vote total of 65,022 far surpassed the 2012 total of 47,037. And all the millions of dollars spent by Cantor on all those advertising and marketing methods resulted in him receiving only 28,902 votes, far less than the 37,369 he received in 2012 and far less than the 36,120 votes Brat received. In other words, the “boots on the ground, neighbor-to-neighbor” GOTV activities trumped the “advertising and marketing campaign.”
We’ve got millions of conservative “political activists” of one type or another. Let’s try to unite with others where we live, to fill up those approximately 200,000 precinct committeeman slots that need a warm conservative body. About 200,000 of the approximately 400,000 Republican PC slots are filled, and about half of those are filled by conservatives. We can end the conservative vs. RINO war inside the Party by winning it: all it takes is about 200,000 conservatives to get “inside” the Party where they live. Again, study the graphics above.
I hope you will consider doing this. If you are going to spend time “doing politics,” what better way to do it, a few hours a month, than as a voting member of your local Republican Party committee, where you can become a voting member of it allowing you to vote for the Party’s officers, directly or indirectly, including those who occupy the RNC slots?
Or we can end up with Eric Cantor as the Chairman of our Party.
So, what will you do?
I hope this helps.
The Precinct Project’s Blog