For a meeting which didn’t feature a speaker, we heard an earful from one person.
But as usual, we began with the Lord’s Prayer and Pledge of Allegiance. Then we departed from tradition a little bit because there were several candidates present who wanted to say their thanks, just in time for Thanksgiving. (We didn’t get to the Treasurer’s report until about midway through the meeting and the minutes from the October meeting were inadvertantly left at home by our secretary.)
We began with newly-elected Councilman at-large Bob Culver, who thanked us for the financial and moral support and told us the new Council members had their orientation today in preparation for their swearing in the evening of December 7th. They’ll elect new officers that night and chances are we’ll have a new Council vice-president.
“I’m pretty confident this will stand.” Bob Caldwell was talking about his razor-thin two vote margin of victory. He figured David MacLeod would request the recount he’s entitled to due to the closeness of the race but it’s not likely to change the results. Bob’s a living reminder that every vote does count – if just one person had changed their mind and voted for MacLeod, we’d be awaiting a coin flip.
Charles Otto said the support the club gave “was a blessing to us” and thanked us for it. He pointed out that the budget took a turn for the worse (conveniently after the election, of course) and told us these were the “most challenging times I’ve seen in my lifetime.” But tax increases were not the answer.
Even though she didn’t win, Marty Pusey had some of the most interesting remarks.
She told us that she didn’t decide to run until a townhall meeting held by the Worcester County Americans for Prosperity and featuring Delegates Jim Mathias and Norm Conway. Marty recalled how she asked herself, especially about Conway, “is this the best we can do?” She decided running would be a “win-win” – either she would win or she’d at least make Norm Conway fight for the seat. (Perhaps she was successful since Conway didn’t have enough coattails to pull Gee Williams in.) Marty was also amazed how our message became their message at election time, as suddenly liberal-voting Democrats had a conservative message.
(And you wonder why I told her I’m starting the ‘Draft Pusey for 2014’ movement.)
Marc Kilmer chimed back in that “2010 was a lot better than 2006,” considering our record of local successes. Then he turned the floor over to newly elected WCRCC Chair Dave Parker for the Central Committee report.
First of all, those of us present received our certificates for being elected. (Unfortunately, they are signed by Martin O’Malley.)
But he may have surprised a few people by saying, “I view my job as training a younger leader (for the local party).” And if that wasn’t enough, Dave then told us, “You now have two TEA Party activists on the top of your Central Committee.”
Wait until Audrey Scott, Mary Kane, and the other establishment Republicans read that; in fact, let me repeat it:
“You now have two TEA Party activists on the top of your Central Committee.”
Dave continued by saying the TEA Party and the GOP are “working hand-in-hand” in Wicomico County. Ain’t that a beautiful thing?
The job for the rest of us was pretty simple: “we gotta educate the voters” and “hold people to the fire.”
Parker also shared his “concern” about the Victory Centers, where local candidates and supporters were disappointed to find that their intent seemed to be pushing Bob Ehrlich and Andy Harris moreso than getting local hopefuls elected. He also recounted the Rule 11 controversy for those not in the know.
Turning to the state party, Dave argued “the Chair (of the state party) has to be a fundraiser.” Unfortunately to that end, “we still can be totally ignored in Annapolis.”
Yet, with our local success of getting 6 of the 7 County Council seats (thus, holding veto power over anything Rick Pollitt does) the onus is on the GOP to do things right – if things are screwed up, “it’s our fault.”
Finally, Dave reminded us that the Lincoln Day Dinner is actually slated for Abe’s birthday, February 12, 2011 at Salisbury University.
Yes, it was a much longer Central Committee report than usual, but there was a lot to say. It more than made up for the lack of a Lower Shore Young Republican report or the many candidate campaign reports we heard in months past.
To close the affair, Marc reminded us about our Christmas Party on December 12th and Ann Suthowski brought up the Chamber of Commerce’s Legislative Meeting upcoming on December 16th.
As usual, the WCRC won’t have a regular December meeting; their next gathering will be January 24, 2o11.