This Reponse Says it all Regarding CRA Convention Complaints

 California Republican Assembly  Comments Off on This Reponse Says it all Regarding CRA Convention Complaints
Apr 202011
 

I am the Recording Secretary for CRA and was present at the convention.  I also know Sylvia Sullivan (not as well as you do) and have tremendous respect for her.  When we voted on her being allowed to take pictures, I voted yes and was disappointed she was not allowed to do so.

But let’s set the record straight about some things.

Like most political conventions there was a Credentials Committee appointed by the President and confirmed by the Board.  The job of a Credentials Committee is to make sure the people presented to be delegates are properly accredited as Delegates for CRA’s convention and no one is going to “stuff the ballot box” by getting more people into the convention who are not proper Delegates.

This means that the potential Delegates must be members of CRA and have been members of the Unit sending them for at least 30 days prior to the convention.  That if they transferred from one CRA Unit to another one before the convention that they properly advised the Membership Secretary of CRA, the Unit they are leaving and the Unit they are going to when they transferred again 30 or more days before the convention.  The vast majority of Units in CRA, unless their bylaws are written differently, require the Units to hold a meeting prior to the convention and elect their Delegates to the convention.  O yes – they must also be registered Republicans!  Also, keep in mind that under CRA’s bylaws for a statewide convention – the more members you have the more delegates you are allowed to send to the convention (i.e. the more votes you have there).

The Chairman of the Credentials Committee George Park (who was also a CRA Vice President) received many, many faxed in Delegate sheets on the last day allowed for Units to send them in (those sheets must be signed by the Unit President and Secretary to be valid – again pursuant to the bylaws of CRA).  Some of them were suspicious.  For example, in one instance their were four sheets for four Units faxed in the same evening from the same fax machine (pages 1 of 4, 2 of 4, etc.) all for Southern California Units from a 916 fax machine that belongs to a Sacramento political fund raising firm.  And all in the same handwriting!

Mr. Park then turned to CRA’s then Membership Secretary Peggy Mew and asked her to send to the Credentials Committee a copy of these Unit’s rosters and their bylaws.  This was to check and make sure the member lists were proper and more importantly that the Delegates (and Alternates if needed) were proper members of the Unit they were to represent. Also that if the Unit required an election of Delegates and that one was held (obviously to be determined by telephone conversations with the Unit Presidents).

Both prior to the convention and at the convention itself, Ms. Peggy Mew refused to give ANY of this information to the Credentials Committee.  She offered no information whatsoever to the Credentials Committee to do its job prior to her leaving for an out of the country vacation just prior to the convention.  Not being able to obtain this information from Ms. Mew, Mr. Park and his Committee went to the Unit Presidents and/or Secretaries and asked for this information.  This was proper under CRA’s bylaws which state:

Section 10.07. Records. All records of each Republican Assembly shall be maintained by the Secretary and Treasurer of that Republican Assembly, available for examination by members thereof and by the officers of the CRA.

52 Units complied with this request.  In those cases where the Units did not comply with this request, the Committee would not accredit them as Delegates.

At the convention each Unit and potential Delegate that was not credentialed was given the opportunity of making their case as to why they should be given a Delegate badge to the entire convention (not just the Credentials Committee).  Once again Membership Secretary Peggy Mew (having just returned from her vacation) refused to give out any information to Mr. Park or his Committee.  As each potential Delegate of each challenged Unit came and addressed the rest of the Delegates, none of them offered any reason why they did not supply the requested information to the Credentials Committee.

Many, many of these very nice folks could not name their unit president, did not know if the unit conducted an election to elect them to be a Delegate or if they bylaws of their unit required that or not. In some cases they needed to be reminded of the name of their CRA Unit.  In one case the nice young woman arguing her case discussed at length the great things the San Diego Republican Party was doing until one of the Delegates reminded her this was the CRA not the official Republican party.

No potential Delegate could explain the four pages of four separate units sent in from one fax machine in Sacramento in the same handwriting.  No one could explain why some potential Delegates were coming up on the voter roles as registered Democrats or Decline to State voters.  No one gave an explanation about why come Delegates were listed on two separate Units’ delegate sheets.

Under these circumstances the Delegates present (with some exceptions) upheld the Credentials Committee’s findings and voted to not seat these folks as Delegates.

I know that people were angry that they were not seated as Delegates.  Their anger should be directed at their own Unit Presidents who refused to cooperate with the Credentials Committee or comply with the CRA bylaws.  The elected officials who were also denied a Delegate badge should ask their Unit President that question too.

No one in leadership at CRA nor any CRA member wishes to deny any properly credentialed Delegate the ability to participate and vote at a CRA convention.  But if their Unit Presidents will not give even basic information to the Credentials Committee what is the Committee and ultimately the other members of the Convention to do?  As much as everyone would like to see everyone seated as Delegates, no one wants voter fraud either.

By the way, Membership Secretary Peggy Mew was up for re-election.  She was not re-elected – George Park was elected in her place.

I hope this helps give some clarity to the situation at CRA’s convention last weekend.

There is much, much more that could be and likely will be about this convention last weekend.  That will have to wait for now.

Apr 192011
 

I had sp0ken with State Senator Joel Anderson in the afternoon of Sat 4/16 in a lull in the action.

He had asked for a chance to speak at the dinner – I got George and company to wedge him into the program.

I was very disappointed that he used it as a forum to complain about not being credentialed. I’d suggest to the Senator two things for next time: Please don’t meddle in CRA affairs and make sure that 4 units are not written out in the same handwriting and faxed from John Bovee’s office. I had several delegates that voted for Karen tell me that those were the four most obvious frauds. (as well as the 8 Coronas)

Sunday was quite a different day – threatened disruptions were anecdotal. However, it did not stop a bunch of hair-splitting delaying tactics about adopting the convention rules.

Karen’s crew, playing the martyrs, made a “stand” over the refund policy for the convention. That took 30 minutes. In all, the standard delaying tactics that you see at a convention lasted 1:45. This meant we started candidate speeches at 12:00 noon.

One of the candidate speeches featured a cheap-shot at George and I. Not a bad way to end the weekend.

After a gut-wrenching weekend I nearly lost my composure in my candidate speech – fortunately, I only had 20 seconds left.

There was no screaming and yelling – just more threats from David Reade and Mark Spannagel and others over refunds. Of course, Tim LaFever was lurking around with his phone as well.

Their behavior was much more subdued on Sunday.

We balloted – and that took 15 minutes.

I had made 400 ballots. We had one spoiled, 123 unused and 276 cast.

I had three of Karen’s supporters in the room – including my opponent, Ron Givens and former CRA President Ken Mettler along with 4 of my deputies.

It still took 1.5 hours to do the count.

There were about half the people left in the room when I came back – apparently the scintillating debate over resolutions and by-laws whittled away a lot of the crowd.

It was a bizarre experience announcing the results. I was asked to speak really slow so people could tweet the results. And, I was also asked to announce the vote totals.

Midway through the announcement, someone from Long Beach heckled me asking for a recount – that’s when I informed the convention that 8 people split amongst both camps counted the ballots.

Again – I nearly lost my composure when I announced my own victory.

After getting attacked repeatedly in a variety of ways – victory was the best answer.

I don’t know if the slander itself is worse or the fact that some people actually believe that crap.

It was a political earthquake. Contract with the CRA won – and ran the table against a group of consultants, lawyers, some members of the legislature who waded in to CRA affairs for some reason and union style tactics.

Maybe in the ensuing months both the true extent of the attempted fraud and the powers that attempted the takeover of CRA will be revealed.

The CRA will survive – because the CRA is an idea, it is not the Park Brothers, it is not a group of people – the CRA is an idea.

 

Apr 182011
 

Saturday at the Convention was unreal.

We knew to expect disruptions, but what we saw on Saturday was beyond the pale.

There were multiple threats of lawsuits – Tim LaFever was lurking around and several times I observed him calling someone I believe to be the attorney that was used to sue CRA. He was also soliciting clients to sue CRA on other grounds. It may have been an act – but Mr LaFever deserves some notoriety for being in the middle of the absurdities on Saturday.

We adopted a convention rule against filming – but that didn’t stop a whole bunch of capitol staffers and consultants from using their phones to film parts of the convention.

Paul Dillon of the Stanton “Unit” of the CRA was responsible for the Cops coming to the convention. He bum-rushed the door of the convention session multiple times. I found out later that Dillon himself admitted the whole stunt was pre-planned to another deputy Sgt. at Arms.

I was inside the room and did not see who called the cops.

Several of the “delegates” that ultimately were disqualified in the credentials committee were outside chanting, yelling etc and did so for several hours.

The deputy Sgts did an incredible job keeping people out of the room that should not have been in the room all morning.

While I was railed on and our team were railed on with bogus arguments over “transparency” (a buzz word of the left when they don’t get their way) – there were 300 people in the morning session.

It was punctuated by now former membership secretary Peggy Mew attempting to take out Bakersfield, Brea La-Habra and Kern River Valley basically to settle scores against Ken Mettler and Richard Rios. Once those challenges were shot down, it gave former CRA President Mike Spence a hammer to attempt to use against the challenges that occurred in the afternoon.

A very interesting subtext was that former CRA President Mike Spence (the other side’s biggest advocate) appeared to be familiar with the By-Laws of all the units of CRA. One of the main issues was the lack of information and the patent refusal to provide information – but somehow, Mike Spence had that information.

The afternoon session was in a different part of the hotel that was much easier to control.

The Afternoon session was where several units were challenged for multiple violations of CRA By-Laws. (Due to the threat of legal action – I will omit details)

In one case, a woman defending her unit could not pronounce the name of the unit.

In other cases, people speaking could not answer basic questions about how they got appointed. (again, I am omitting key details due to threatened legal action)

The entire CRA delegation got to see for themselves what the Credentials Committee saw.

When the 9-hour Credentials Committee Report was concluded – there were several units disqualified entirely.

For my part – I got blisters on my feet from having to run around the room counting standing vote after standing vote all day.

There were some other subtexts – and I will address the Sac RA vs Placer RA subtext in a later post 100% about that fight.

The only thing the CRA did on Saturday was the Credentials Report.

By the evening of Saturday 4/16 – the convention was quiet again.

Correcting the Record as it Relates to Ron Givens

 California Republican Assembly  Comments Off on Correcting the Record as it Relates to Ron Givens
Apr 182011
 

Update: Ron Givens is directly involved in attempts to challenge the legitimacy of the CRA officer elections. I guess my attempts to take the high road meant little or nothing. Mr. Givens posted a video of my 72 year old father and led in to it with inaccurate information. Just amazing how people in politics behave.

Please also note that Givens and others are raising money for yet another lawsuit against CRA. Here I was thinking Givens could be an agent of reconciliation, whoops.

In my tradition of cleaning up my own side of the street – I wanted to clear up two things I wrote about Ron Givens (my opponent for CRA Sgt at Arms):

I had information from PDI Voter Reg Database that showed Ron Givens as a DTS voter from 2004 (who took a Rep Ballot) through 9/21/2010.

Givens sent me info from Sac County that indicated he left the GOP in early 2008 prior to taking a Dem ballot in the 2/5/2008 CA Presidential Primary. This means Ron was a DTS from early 2008 through 9/21/2010 only.

In addition – I highlighted Givens taking a trip to New Zealand to speak out against Three Strikes this coming May.

The blog had a date of 2010 which meant the trip would have occurred while Ron was still a DTS voter – I made an error when I looked at the blog link thinking it was recent and not from last year.

I never meant to attack Ron as being Pro-Choice or No on 8 – I simply focused on his opposition to the death penalty and his opposition to three strikes as demonstrated by the information I found on the internet. If anything I wrote led someone to believe otherwise, I apologize for that as well.

Please note that Mr. Givens was quite gracious in defeat – I had him in the room counting ballots as well out of fairness. Since I was in charge of the elections committee and a candidate – it seemed fair to have my opponent involved in the process as well.

Apr 172011
 

The Contract with the CRA Slate Ran the Table:

President Celeste Greig 165-119

Vice President – Winners

Karl Heft 176
Tim Thiesen 163
Tom Hudson 156
Mike Zimmerman 155
Cliff Wagner 154
Bob Kowell 154 (Got one-year term)

Corresponding Secretary –
Janine Heft – 165-110

Membership Secretary
George Park 158-118

Recording Secretary
Craig Alexander 158-118

Voter Registration Secretary
Sam Cannon 151-118

Sgt At Arms
Aaron F Park 158-116

National Committeewoman
Angel Zarobinski 163-109

Assistant Treasurer
Baron Night 162-109