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Spring 2002 Newsletter

In This Issue:

Lt. Governor Candidate Bruce McPherson to Address Congress
Why America Likes President Bush
Placer Congress Wins Statewide Award
California Republican Party Update
Davis Hits Up Students For Cash
2002 Republican Statewide Candidates
Register Republicans At County Fair

Lt. Governor Candidate Bruce McPherson To Address Congress

State Senator Bruce McPherson, Republican nominee for Lt. Governor, will address Congress members and the public on June 10th at 5:30PM at the Auburn Elks Lodge.

Mainstream Credentials

Senator McPherson, elected to the Assembly in 1993 and later to the State Senate, represents the Santa Cruz area of California.   The Senator has proven to be a true mainstream Republican leader; a champion of education, the environment and a woman’s right to choose.  He has played a leading role in such areas as class-size reduction, updating core curricula, establishing graduation standards and providing more money for textbooks.

He has also been instrumental in protecting our natural resources, casting the deciding vote to prohibit oil drilling off the California coastline.

Tough Fight Ahead

Endorsed in the March primary by an overwhelming majority of Republican leaders throughout the State, he easily won the March Primary. In the November General Election, however, he is in for a tough fight against Democrat Lt. Governor Cruz Bustamante, the highest ranking Latino elected official in California.

Senator McPherson will need strong Republican support—and money—for the Fall campaign.

Reserve Your Tickets Today!

To confirm your attendance at this exciting event, please call (916) 786-6690, then pay $20 per person by cash, check or credit card at the door. Refreshments will be served.

Members Save $5.00!

Members who prepay for their tickets save $5.00! Send a check for $15 per member payable to “Placer Congress,” P.O. Box 840, Newcastle, CA 95658. Non-members can pre-pay by sending a check for $20 per person.

Direction To Event

The Auburn Elks Lodge is located at 195 Pine Street in Auburn. Take I-80 East, exit Hwy 49 and turn right, turn left on Lincoln Way, turn left again on Pine Street, go to end of street on the left.


Why America Likes President Bush

By Peggy Noonan, former speech writer to President Reagan. Reprinted from the Wall Street Journal Opinion Journal dated May 10, 2002.

How is George W. Bush doing?

In Washington the past weekend everyone I spoke to answered that question by referring to the recent USA Today poll that said the president's popularity continues undiminished and, amazingly enough, for reasons apart from the war. People like him. They respect him. Almost eight in 10 said they thought he was doing a good job as president.

Nor is the press fully immune, or so it seemed to me. After Mr. Bush gave his humorous speech at the White House Correspondents Association dinner, I mentioned to an acquaintance, a veteran journalist at a national newspaper and presumably not a reflexive Bush supporter, that I thought the president's speech all right but undistinguished. "Wasn't as good as Clinton," I said. Bill Clinton's material at dinners like this was top-notch.

Clinton Was Vulgar

"But Clinton was vulgar!" the journalist said. Mr. Clinton's very smoothness, the fact that he was at his best doing shtick for the media, was vulgar. Mr. Bush is more like a president: boring.

Presidents should be boring. We don't hire them to entertain us, we hire them to be stable, sane and sure-handed.

What is the key to Mr. Bush's popularity? I think the source of it is something that isn't new. He walked into the White House with it. But it has become more apparent with time and is, I think, more appreciated.

Does Not Need The Job

It is that he does not need the job. He did not lust for it and does not hunger for it. He does not need the presidency to fulfill a romantic sense of personal destiny. He does not have a neurotic fixation on the office. He does not love having or wielding its power. He views the presidency as a responsibility, and sometimes a burden. But he tries each day to meet it. Sometimes it is pleasurable for him, sometimes not.

There is with Mr. Bush an almost palpable sense that he would rather be at the ranch. He would rather be enjoying life and having fun with baseball teams, he would rather have privacy, he would rather go for a drive. He radiates a sense that he has given up a lot to be president. He radiates a sense that he will enjoy it when he gets back what he gave up. But right now he has work to do.

I do not mean to suggest that Mr. Bush is or seems ambivalent about the presidency. I don't think he is or does. He means to be a good president, that is obvious. He works hard, is committed, ambitious and serious. He means to win the war. He is capable of wielding the power he has to wield, and one senses he has enough vanity to believe he is as good a wielder of it as any, and maybe better than most.

But . . . he doesn't need it.

He doesn't love celebrity, doesn't gravitate to the glamorous, doesn't seem to think fame can bestow magic, gladness, personal contentment. I watched him sitting on the dais Saturday night; he looked like he was thinking about whether the jeep needs tires. He was not excited to be surrounded by the glittering prizewinners of Washington, who were arrayed in tuxedoes and gowns before him. His wife, also on the dais, smiled pleasingly at everyone, but her smile is unvarying, almost inexpressive, and still seems to hide more than it reveals. She too radiates a sense that she'd be happy back home, kicking her shoes off with the girls and then falling asleep with a book.

When the Mideast was blowing up a few weekends ago, the president was at the ranch. When asked why he wasn't more involved in what was happening, he groused that he was; he'd spent half of Saturday morning on the phone. If he had been LBJ or Nixon or Bill Clinton he would have been a Toscanini of the telephone, talking to world leaders and attempting to bring some personal magic to the drama.

Mr. Bush doesn't seem to believe in magic. Yesterday afternoon, talking in the White House to reporters about the struggle he has had getting his judicial nominees through Congress, he looked like someone who was indignant and frustrated but not loaded for bear. He looked like it was work.

Why does Mr. Bush's seeming not to need the presidency contribute to his popularity? Why would it be, in fact, a central reason for his high poll numbers?

Because when you know they don't need it, you know they won't do anything to keep it. And you can start to trust them.

When you know a man experiences an office not as a prize to which he is entitled but as a burden by which he is bound, you feel you can comfortably appreciate him and his efforts.

When a leader doesn't need the office he holds, the electorate feels free to have faith in him. They infer from his lack of need a simple thing: He will be less likely to sacrifice the country's interests to his own. He will not tend to put his own passing political interests over the needs of the nation in order to win. Because he doesn't have to win.

When you know a man doesn't have to win, you know he probably won't do anything to win. And when you know he won't do anything to win, you feel more secure in letting him win.

Crying Room

In the Vatican after they have chosen a new pope, they lead him to a room off the Sistine Chapel where he is given the clothing of a pope. It is called the Crying Room. It is called that because it is there that the burdens and responsibilities of the papacy tend to come crashing down on the new pontiff. Many of them have wept. The best have wept.

That in a way is why people like Mr. Bush. They can tell he has been to the crying room. They respect him for it.


Placer Congress Wins Statewide Award

At the April 2002 statewide convention of the California Congress of Republicans (CCR), our chapter won the distinguished Mary Carter Membership Award for the largest CCR chapter in the State of California.

With over 250 members on the rolls as of December 31, 2001, our chapter was far and away the largest in the State.

CCR has 40+ chapters with more than 4,000 members statewide.

Accepting the award for Placer County, Co-Founder and current Secretary Glenda Freeman remarked that it was the committed effort of our entire Board of Directors and Golden Circle supporters that made such an accomplishment possible. Great Programs Draw Members

The Placer Congress Board of Directors has always focused on the core mission of any volunteer political group—producing great events with insightful speakers to involve, educate and engage the community.

Our chapter, for example, was one of only a handful of GOP clubs in the State to host all three candidates for Governor—Riordan, Jones and Simon—during the primary season.

With this focus on great programs and building membership, the Placer Congress has grown from the 60 people that formed the chapter in 1999 to its present size.

Given our results in a traditionally slow non-election year, even greater success is expected in 2002.


California Republican Party Update

A letter from Gerry Parsky, President Bush’s California Campaign Chairman to Republican Leaders throughout California dated May 16, 2002:

The President’s Trip To California

The President's recent trip to California was his fourth since taking office last year and it was an unqualified success!

Three good things happened:

* First, the President raised over $4.5 million for Bill Simon's campaign for Governor, in just two events.

* Second, the media and the public praised President Bush for his appearance in South Central Los Angeles at the Renaissance Center and for his compassionate conservative message in Silicon Valley.

* Third, we were delighted to have hosted over 250 of our volunteers and grassroots leadership at the President's speech in San Jose.

Cal Plan

Thanks to Lorelei Kinder, Chair of the CRP Cal Plan Committee and to Ron Rogers, Bill Simon's Campaign Manager for their efforts and input to this year's political planning process.

Cal Plan is the California Republican Party's coordinated political plan, spelling out the volunteer efforts, communications and GOTV programs to be undertaken this year. After weeks of meetings and calls, on Friday, May 3, 2002, the Committee's plan was adopted unanimously by the CRP Board of Directors.

The Cal Plan Committee includes Senator Jim Brulte and Assembly Leader Dave Cox, working with the leadership of Bill Back and Doug Boyd from the State Party and key finance team members including CRP Finance Chair Tom Stephenson and Andy Ludwick (CRP Budget & Expenditure Committee Chair).

Together, the CRP's Cal Plan Committee stands ready to maximize our strategic capabilities to elect Bill Simon, the entire statewide ticket, as well as state and federal legislative candidates.

Team Cal / Voter Registration

Although we Republicans are at a significant registration disadvantage, Team Cal, our major donor group, is dedicated to financially supporting Republican voter registration and GOTV efforts that you -- who are working so hard to change this imbalance -- support with your volunteer efforts! Since Team Cal has taken over funding our voter registration program, Team Cal has contributed more than $158,000 to your organizations for Bounty earned. In 2002, this effort has registered approximately 70,000 new Republicans! Keep up the good work.

Coordination with RNC and Simon Campaign

Thanks to Tom Stephenson, Ryan Erwin and John Peschong, Team Cal has been working very closely with the RNC. Team Cal has just received funds from the RNC to improve the California voter file and more funds will be coming from the RNC to Team Cal.

We have also been working very closely with the Simon Campaign and will be meeting with the entire statewide ticket to coordinate fundraising.

Republican Unity

Now is the time for all Republicans to unite behind our ticket. Given our registration disadvantage, we cannot hope to win if we do not come together.

Together we can field a great team working to elect Republican candidates this November. Be a part of our political operation, join in the volunteer work, support our candidates' campaigns and be a positive force for Republican successes!

Thanks again for your continuing good efforts!

Gerry Parsky Team Cal Chairman


Davis Hits Up Students For Cash

By Carla Marinucci and Greg Lucas of the San Francisco Chronicle dated May 12, 2002.

Latest Fundraising Outrage

The invitation to young Democrats at UC Berkeley was enticing, offering an unusual opportunity to speak with their party's leader, Gov. Gray Davis, only a few days after he won the March primary.

But there was a catch.

"I am sure all of you know students and young professionals who are politically interested," said the letter from Mike Montgomery, a fund-raiser for Davis. "This is a great opportunity to interact with the governor for a mere $100."

It's not so much the price tag -- rock bottom by political standards -- but the brassy techniques of Davis' re-election fund raising that have critics up in arms and his ethical standards under a microscope.

The current Oracle Corp. scandal, involving a $25,000 check that a company representative passed to a Davis agent after the award of a $95 million no-bid contract, has underscored questions about the governor's quest for campaign cash, his leader even whether his policy pronouncements carry a price tag.

The March 8 event for Berkeley students underscores the degree to which the Democratic governor has taken his fund-raising mission as he faces a November election against deep-pocketed GOP millionaire businessman Bill Simon.

Student Pitch Pushes Envelope

"When you're asking college students for $100 a pop, you've entered a new realm," said Steve Weiss, spokesman for the Center for Responsive Politics, based in Washington. "The envelope is being stretched."

The governor's letter, which was obtained by KTVU as part of the television station's joint investigation with The Chronicle, evoked mixed emotions in the students who saw it.

"As a Democrat, I support Gov. Davis," said Jeremiah Frei-Pearson, 24, a law student and party activist. "But I can't support the decision to charge students to meet with him. . . . I don't think access to the political system should be for sale."

Bruce Cain, who heads UC Berkeley's Institute of Governmental Studies, which oversees the university's student political organizations, said the appeal illustrates how completely "the governor is tone deaf with respect to how people outside of his world view his activities.

"He doesn't realize that he basically is shaking down students for the lunch money," said Cain. "He is not interested in their enthusiasm or their volunteerism; he is interested in squeezing every last cent he can, out of whatever source he can."

"It's a sad commentary," Cain added, "that instead of saying, 'Come join me, ' he treats students like he does every other interest group in the state."

Campaign Defends Fundraising

Davis representatives note the letter initially was sent only to students who had contributed to Davis in the past.

Davis' chief campaign strategist, Garry South, argues that the governor -- who lacks the deep pockets of wealthy Simon -- has no practical choice but to solicit a broad range of support in California, where getting a message to 15 million voters requires expensive media in 16 major television markets.

"Every candidate running for public office, in both the major parties, does segmented fund raising that ranges from asking people for $25 . . . to having dinners like Simon just had for $100,000 apiece," South said. "People are acting as if Gray Davis was the first person in the history of the world to raise money."

But that hasn't stopped Republicans from hinting that they intend to make an issue of the Davis war chest.

"Gray Davis has turned his administration into the equivalent of Crime Inc., " said GOP strategist Sean Walsh. "He has always completely stretched fund raising to the limit. . . . It sends the message that if you want to conduct your business, you're going to have to pay to play."

South countered that critics -- particularly Republicans encouraging a "feeding frenzy" over the time and effort Davis spends on campaign fund raising -- are guilty of "a lot of hypocrisy and jealousy.

"We're successful. We do this well. George Bush did it well," South said. "What's the dif?"

Discontent Among Donors

But in an ominous signal for Davis, increasingly harsh complaints about the governor's activity are beginning to echo from Democrats at all levels -- from budget-conscious students to major CEO donors.

Paul Turner of the Greenlining Institute in San Francisco said the Davis approach has sparked a growing discontent among the Democratic base.

"The idea that we have to pay homage to the pharaoh," he said, "is like somebody standing at (Davis') door and saying, 'What gifts do you bring the governor, that you have an audience with him?' "

Indeed, interviews with a number of Democratic political insiders suggest increasing resentment with the aggressive nature of the governor's fund- raisers -- and even the governor himself -- in the pitch for donations.

Most ask that their names not be used, saying they fear retribution from the powerful governor or his staff. But some allege more serious grievances, insisting they have been informed directly that access, or action by Davis, was denied specifically because they had not donated sufficiently to his campaign.

"I'm not naive. . . . We've contributed quite a bit of money and sat next to him at dinner," said one prominent California chief executive officer who said he has given more than $25,000 to the governor. "I know people give money to get access."

But the CEO said his own disillusionment began when, hoping to press Davis on a policy issue, he was told by Davis' staff that the governor's ear was also getting bent by out-of-state business interests -- who gave bigger checks.

"It was so direct. It's, 'These guys are giving me the money, and I've got to listen,' " the CEO said. "This is entirely about, 'If you give me money, I will do this for you.' "This guy's for sale. . . . I have a huge problem with that."

‘'You Didn’t Give Me Money’

The sentiments are echoed by a prominent state lawyer and Democratic activist, who said she was "astonished" by the Davis campaign's letter to the Cal students. But the attorney, who also spoke to The Chronicle only on the condition of anonymity, was not surprised. She said she called the governor's office when he failed to sign legislation supporting an initiative with wide following among grassroots Democrats.

"Somebody very high up in the (Davis) administration," she said, told her that "the reason he didn't sign (the bill) is 'because you didn't give him money.'

"I could not believe my ears," the attorney said. "I went crazy."

Political consultant Marc O'Hara, who said he has heard countless similar stories, also supports Davis' Democratic agenda -- and is also concerned.

Wanting to get the governor's attention on environmental issues, he said he offered to do a fund-raiser to gather grassroots supporters and raise $25,000 for Davis. O'Hara said he was told "it wasn't enough to qualify" for Davis' appearance.

Party loyalists -- from students to activists to business leaders with cash -- are "now competing for the governor's attention . . . with industries with hundreds of thousands of dollars to spend," he said. "Democrats are the party of the people. But a lot of Democrats have felt hijacked -- not only the agenda, but by the cost of doing business."

South adamantly denied accusations of promises made in exchange for campaign contributions, and he said the governor has never, and will never, tie campaign cash to policy.

"Whoever told you that is a . . . liar," he said angrily. "We don't promise anybody anything. They can come to a decent event, and we won't tie up too much of their time. That's all they're promised."

And, he said, stories of inordinate pressure to give are simply inaccurate. "No one in the state of California, or the rest of the world, has to give Gov. Gray Davis a penny for his re-election campaign. They can do so if they choose to. No one will hold a gun to their head. We don't force people to give us money."

Growing Troubles For Davis

But Warren Alford, regional director for the Sierra Club, called Davis' outreach to the students "stunning" and said it -- and the other evidence of growing troubles -- bode ill for Davis come November.

"The way we look at things from a grassroots angle is: There are two types of power -- money and people," Alford said. "That's an incredible example of how the people side of the Democratic Party is being pushed to the sidelines."


2002 Republican Statewide Candidates

Simon Wins

Businessman Bill Simon, in a surprise, come from behind victory, is now the Republican nominee for Governor of California. He was the overwhelming favorite of Party loyalists who appreciated his

tough fiscal, no new taxes message combined with his business background and experience as a prosecutor under Rudy Giuliani.

Former LA Mayor Riordan and Secretary of State Jones immediately pledged their full support to Simon and the entire Republican ticket.

McPherson Running Mate

State Senator Bruce McPherson, who will speak to the Placer Congress on June 10th, was nominated as our Lt. Governor candidate and Simon’s running mate. McClintock For Controller

State Senator Tom McClintock, widely viewed as one of the most knowledgeable elected officials in the area of State finance, taxes and spending, is our Republican nominee for Controller.

Campaign HQ Coming

In traditional fashion, the Placer County Republican Party, in cooperation with all GOP clubs in the area, will be opening various campaign offices in the late summer. For the 2000 campaign, there were campaign offices in Roseville, Auburn and Lincoln. They all supported the Party’s get out the vote efforts for the November election.

Watch your mail, email and future newsletters for more information and invitations to participate in what will surely be a hotly contested Fall campaign.


Register Republicans at the County Fair

Fair is June 6-9, 2002

The Placer County Fair is upon us, June 6-9, 2002. Over 40,000 people attended the Fair last year.  This year promises to be even bigger. 

The Placer County Republican Party Fair Booth is an excellent way to showcase the Republican Party.   Last year the Fair Booth was moved out of the sterile Exhibit Hall and placed in the center of activity.  It was spiffed up and expanded to make it look like the "happening place."    The Fair Booth provided information about the Republican Party and our candidates.  We signed up volunteers, sold products, accepted donations and generally had fun.

Call To Help

There are still two hour shifts available to work at the Booth.  If you, your family or friends would like to volunteer to work at the fair booth, please call Sally Halsey at 916-434-9444. 

For your 2 hour shift you get a free pass to the Fair. What a deal!



Dan Blatt Appointed 2nd VP

Golden Circle Member Dan Blatt has been appointed to the Board of Directors as 2nd Vice President. Dan will be responsible for Membership renewals and recruitment. He is filling the unexpired term of Dennis White, who recently stepped down from the Board to pursue his retirement plans and travel. November Board Election

All eight seats on the Board of Directors will be up for election in November. The Board is encouraging all interested members to step forward and serve in this leadership role. If you are interested in serving on the Board for the next two year cycle, please contact President Paul Hrabal at 916-660-1919 or by email at paul@paulhrabal.com.


Don't Miss Congress News and Events

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Past Newsletters

Winter 2002

Fall 2001

Summer 2001

Spring 2001

Winter 2001



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