It's time to catch up again.
People generally think that as soon as the elections are over, we all have a chance to sit back,
put our feet up and relax after the crazy election cycle. But those of us who are deeply
entrenched in the political process know nothing could be further from the truth. Let me fill you
in on what we’ve been up to so far and what’s looming on the horizon.
As soon as the election was over we were faced with breaking down the office and putting
things back in storage. And then we did, in fact, take a break from politics.
In December we held what has now become our annual Christmas party which is actually a
thank you for all of our volunteers, contributors, and sponsors.
In January we met at the Avon Town Council for our first quarterly meeting of the year. Jeff
Hays, chair of the Colorado Republican Committee, was our guest speaker and he graciously
agreed to give us a re-cap of the 2018 elections.
I don’t need to remind any of you that it was a particularly brutal year for Republicans in
Colorado and there are many reasons for it. Jeff shared his assessments as a way of explanation
rather than excuses.
For those of you who have read “The Blueprint: How the Democrats Won Colorado”, you
already know that this election was a culmination of a plan put in place 14 years before by “the
gang of 4” of which Polis was a key founder, player, and financial sponsor. Of course it goes
without saying that when a guy - aka Jared Polis – can drop somewhere between $30-40mil of
his own money into a campaign, it’s hard to compete. Another problem was that we had no
national election meaning without a presidential or senate race, the down ballot races were
controlled by our top of the ticket which in this case meant the governor’s race. Once we lost it,
the rest was inevitable.
But that’s behind us and our focus now has to be going forward. With that in mind I went to
Denver for a Leadership Conference at the end of January with Ryan Call acting as the
moderator. You might remember Ryan as the previous chair of the Colorado Republican
Committee as well as it’s chief legal counsel. For the many new members in leadership roles,
there was an introduction to the structure of the Republican party starting with the RNC and all
the way down to the local county parties. It was interesting to be reminded of our role in the
big picture and the acknowledgement of what a really key role we play.
After that basic review, a consultant from Arkansas took over and that’s when the mood in the
room was elevated. A former public official, he now dedicates his time to training other state
parties on how they were able to turn some of Arkansas’ districts around so Republicans can
now get elected. I took 3 election cycles and a strictly adhered to plan in order to achieve
success but it worked and he’s now sharing those ideas.
Sponsored by the newly formed Independent Expenditure Committee (IEC), this program will
be presented through a series of forums around the state with Eagle County hosting one for the
surrounding counties as soon as the program is formulated. A video is also going to be made
available for our use.
Then on February 12 at the Ambulance District Classroom, the every odd numbered years
process of reorganizing the Republican party started at the county level with election of the
Executive Committee for Eagle County. I was elected to serve another 2 yr term as chair with
John Rosenfeld as 1 st vice chair, Bill Douglas as 2 nd vice chair, Max Schmidt 3 rd vice chair, Dan
Gumber 4th vice chair, Jennifer Woolley as secretary and Katherine Paisen Senn treasurer.
Typically District Captains are appointed at the reorganization meeting but the issue was tabled
pending changes to our bylaws allowing us a more efficient and inclusive process for filling
delegate and alternate positions at the state and district assemblies. We also distributed our
meeting and event schedule for the 2019 year and it is attached here. In preparation for the
April 18 quarterly meeting we would like to ask you to give some thought to the committees
that we should be forming to help move the party forward. Our members have many different
interests and qualifications and we’d like to put all of those assets to work during the 2020
With that process concluded, we now move to Englewood and the Centennial Dinner on March
29 where Grover Norquist will the featured speaker. I have met him and heard him several
times and he’s truly a brilliant political advocate and president of Americans for Tax reform.
Anyone interested can contact me for details.
Then it’s on to serious business on March 30 where State and District elections will be held as
well as discussion of and voting on any suggested changes to the State party bylaws. Officers of
the State party will be elected including the State Executive Committee in addition to officers of
the various Districts. In the case of Eagle County those include Congressional District 2,
Congressional District 3, Senate District 5, House District 26 and Judicial District 5. I’ll keep you,
posted with those results.
With all of that in place, we start working on the next elections in 2020. So, as you can see, the
process never ends. It’s an ongoing sequence of organizing the party at all levels, recruiting
candidates, running elections and starting over again.
I know I say it every election cycle, but this next election will surely be the most important of
our life time. It will require all hands on deck. Once again, we look forward to working with all
of you and hope we can count on your involvement and support.