NCGOP Convention Scuttlebutt …
Well, it looks like the NCGOP will be led for the next two years by by Chairman Claude Pope of Brunswick County (formerly of Wake) and Vice-chairman Joyce Krawiec of Winston-Salem. Pope handily defeated Charlotte area Tea Partier Jack Brosch. Krawiec topped a four-person field with former legislator Glen Bradley coming in second, former Guilford GOP chairman Marcus Kindley coming in third, and Tea Party activist Dave “Major Dave” Goetze pulling in at a distant fourth.
Pope has publicly admitted to being the hand-picked choice of Gov. Pat. But a surprising number of Tea Party activists I’ve spoken with are quite content with Pope at the helm of the state party. They tell me he was very helpful to Tea Party efforts while serving as chairman of The Wake County GOP.
US Senate: The convention has also served as quite a beauty contest for potential GOP candidates for the 2014 US Senate primary. Cary physician — and Tea Party favorite — Greg Brannon addressed the convention Friday night. State House speaker Thom Tillis got much a more prime speaking spot — Saturday, just prior to the vote for party chairman.
Sources tell me it is looking less and less likely that congresswoman Renee Ellmers will jump into the US Senate race. She did address the convention delegates, but did not sound like a potential Hagan foe. My sources tell me that Ellmers appeared to be casually enjoying the convention more than politicking for a potential Senate run.
The real wild card here is Charlotte pastor Mark Harris — a major player in the Southern Baptist Convention. Harris appears to be impressed with an effort to draft him into the Senate race. All indications are there that he will jump into the race.
Sources tell me that political operatives close to outgoing NCGOP chairman — and former congressman — Robin Hayes are behind the Draft Harris effort. I am told that the draft effort has every appearance of a benefit to the Tillis campaign by splitting the Tea Party / conservative vote.
5 thoughts on “NCGOP Convention Scuttlebutt …”
The convention came very close to a disasterous conclusion in my opinion. Balloting ran so late on the vice chair race that we did not have quorum to conduct any further rounds. I’m sure the NCGOP leadership is very relieved that Joyce got over 50% on the first count.
I suppose the state exec committee could have appointed a “temporary” VP if the election failed, but such an action would have discouraged people from driving for hours to attend future conventions.
I will give the convention staff credit for working hard and doing their best under the conditions. Billy Miller did a masterful job of keeping heads cool as things dragged on.
Let’s see, Tillis and Harris are from Mecklenberg/Charlotte while Burr and Hagan hail from the Triad. Maybe an Eastern senaoror would offer some much needed balance.
One other issue that came up at the executive committee meeting was that one of the members, who from his comments had been around for quite a while, took Pope to task for virtually appointing a group of party officers, whom the Plan of Organization calls to be elected. It seemed like a valid point, but more of the committee let Pope do it as virtual appointments. The more I think about it, this issue does need to be raised. During the convention it was mentioned that there were 31 voting members of the Central Committee. Why should any chairman be allowed to stack that committee in this manner? Apparently, from what was said in the meeting, in the past, these were real elections with candidates nominated from the floor, not a slate dictated by a state chairman.
This will hurt Brannon more than it’ll hurt Tillis. The best chance of beating Tillis in a primary is for the social conservative grassroots and the libertarian-leaning grassroots to team up behind 1 and only 1 candidate. Tillis has the support from the lobbyists and corporatists; they have nowhere else to go.
If Harris would stay out (or better yet help Brannon) they’d have a real chance. I sincerely fear that if Harris gets in, the competition for grassroots support will get so fierce between the two grassroots factions that whichever group loses will simply sit out the primary out of pique and hand the nomination to Tillis.
I don’t even understand why the social conservatives feel like they need their own candidate. Brannon is a pro-life OB/GYN, consulted with Skip Stam on pro-life legislation in 2010, and supported the Marriage Amendment.
What the hell else do they WANT?
Beats me. I’m a social conservative and Brannon is just fine by me.
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