Winter 2001 Newsletter
In This Issue:
Dan Walters To Address Placer Congress
Why New Party Leadership Is Needed
Holiday Party Grand Success
Dan Walters: GOP Loses Out in Older 'Burbs
Notice of Bylaws Changes
Dan Walters To Address Placer Congress
The Placer Congress is privileged to have renown political columnist
Dan Walters speak to us on the evening of January 29, 2001, at the
Auburn Elks Lodge, 195 Pine Street, Auburn.
Dan Walters has been a
journalist for more than 40 years, spending all but a few of those years
working for California newspapers. At one point in his career, at age
22, he was the nation’s youngest daily newspaper editor. He joined The
Sacramento Union’s Capitol bureau in 1975, just as Jerry Brown began
his governorship, and later became the Union’s Capitol bureau chief.
In 1981, Mr. Walters began writing the state’s only daily newspaper
column devoted to California political, economic and social events and
in 1984, he and the column moved to The Sacramento Bee. He has written
more than 5,000 columns about California and its politics and his column
now appears in more than 50 California newspapers. Mr. Walters has
written about California and its politics for a number of other
publications, including The Wall Street Journal , the Christian Science
Monitor and the on-line magazine Intellectual Capital.
In 1986, his
book, “The New California: Facing the 21st Century,” was published
in its first edition. The book has since undergone revisions and has
become a widely used college textbook about socioeconomic and political
trends in the state. He is also the founding editor of the “California
Political Almanac” and is a frequent guest on national television news
shows, commenting on California politics.
Reserve Your Tickets Today!
confirm your attendance at this exciting event, please call (916)
632-7071. The cost is $15 per person, including hors d'oeuvres and
refreshments. A no-host bar is also available. Tickets may be purchased
at the door by cash or check or you may buy your tickets in advance by
sending a check, payable to “Republican Congress of Placer County,”
to P.O. Box 840, Newcastle, CA 95658-0840.
Why New Party Leadership Is Needed
Four years and three weeks ago, the day before the 1996 general
election, Republicans held 90 of the 186 partisan offices in California.
We had the Governor’s office, all but two statewide offices and the
majority in the Assembly. We got to that point, while climbing out of a
terrible recession, by running on basic Republican principles in 1994
that could be embraced by Republicans and Democrats alike. Led by Pete
Wilson’s 20 point victory at the top of the ticket, we elected
constitutional officers and legislators across the political spectrum
because Republican men and women turned out at a 25 – 30 percent
higher rate than Democrats.
Four years and three weeks later, the
Democrats outnumber us by 121 – 65 (women 44 – 6.) We have gone from
near parity in partisan offices to being outnumbered almost 2 – 1!
Party Leadership Much To Blame
Republican Party leadership in California
is much to blame for our losses in three straight general elections.
Their single-minded focus on an extreme right social conservative agenda
and financial mismanagement of Party funds, has resulted in historic
lows in Republican registration and an acute fund raising problem that
early last year saw the state Party in debt more than $300,000. Worse
still, the image of the Republican Party in California has been damaged
to such a degree that it will take extreme efforts by new leadership to
One survey showed that when voters were asked about core
Republican principles of local control, personal responsibility and
fiscal conservatism – without the pollster saying they were “Republican”
principles – a majority of voters favored our approach. But, once told
that these were principles that Republicans espoused, a majority of
voters turned unfavorable toward those same principles! This is a
serious image problem that has much to do with the messages coming out
of the current Party leadership.
Brooks Firestone For Party Chairman
time for a change in the Party leadership so that we may arrest the
decline in our Party statewide and begin building a majority coalition
again in California. We need a leadership team that embraces the basic
Republican Principles that unite all Republicans and win over those
swing Democrat and Independent voters that can carry us to victory. The
job of the California Republican Party now is to elect a Chairman and a
Board of Directors made up of positive people who will work to elect all
Republicans. We need leaders with a track record of supporting
Republican candidates who fit their districts and can win
In February, we will have the opportunity to elect Brooks Firestone
Chairman of the Party, along with an outstanding Board. From the snows
of New Hampshire until November 7th, Brooks worked for, donated funds
to, and raised funds for, President-Elect Bush. He helped Republicans of
all political persuasions and spent the weekend before the election
phoning for Congressmen Jim Rogan and Steve Kuykeydahl. Leaders like
Kurt Pringle and Jim Brulte know that Brooks has always been a team
player and his word is his bond.
Brooks showed us in 1994 how to run in
a district that had 9% more Democrats than Republicans and still win by
a 10% margin. He was re-elected to the Assembly two years later with a
20% margin when the Republican candidate at the top of the ticket lost
by 20%! He did that by emphasizing the Republican Principles that unite
us, rather than fight over the issues that divide us. Electing Brooks
Firestone will send a message to the mainstream majority that we want
Note: Election of the Chairman and Board of Directors will
occur at the California Republican Party Organizing Convention to be
held in Sacramento from February 23 – 25, 2001. All Congress members
are encouraged to attend to support Brooks and the Mainstream Majority
Coalition candidates. For more information, please contact Paul Hrabal
at (916) 797-2862.
It is an honor to be elected the second President of the Placer
Congress. I look forward to working with our new Board in guiding the
Congress into the largest, most influential Republican volunteer
organization in Placer County.
We could not have a better foundation on
which to continue our work. Under the leadership of Charter President
Glenda Freeman, co-founder Murriel Oles, 1st VP Tom Jones and 2nd VP
Connie White, the Congress has made a significant contribution to
Republican strength in Placer County since our founding in August 1999.
Accomplishments in 2000
Congress Board members and volunteers were
responsible for key aspects of the Victory 2000 campaign in Placer
County, an effort that resulted in a 23% Bush margin of victory - the
highest in recent memory by a Republican presidential candidate.
Congress also registered more Placer County Republicans this past year
than all other GOP groups combined. The most prominent Republican
officials in California spoke to our membership this past year,
including both candidates for Chairman of the Party – Shawn Steel and
Brooks Firestone – as well as the California Co-Chairman of the
Bush-Cheney campaign, State Senator Jim Brulte.
The Congress also
launched a PAC to recruit and support mainstream Republican candidates
running for partisan office. In just four months, we have raised
thousands of dollars for this effort.
Our Mission Going Forward
continue our mission of:
1. Educating the public on political and public
2. Strengthening the Republican base through
3. Supporting mainstream Republican candidates for partisan office
can look forward to terrific speakers to provide insight into the
political events of the day as well as newsletters offering political
commentary and updates on Congress activities.
Get Involved Today
can also count on numerous opportunities to get involved and help
strengthen the mainstream Republican base in our community. Members are
encouraged to become active in our efforts by attending our general
meetings and volunteering for key committees. We have positions
available on the Membership, Finance, Voter Outreach and Events
Committees – all critical to our initiatives in the coming year.
Whether your skills are in registering voters, speaking to high schools,
stuffing envelopes, raising money or putting on events, there is a place
for you. Just give me a call at (916) 797-2862, or email me at
firstname.lastname@example.org, to let me know of your interest.
Don’t Miss Dan!
Lastly, I would like to encourage all members to not miss Dan Walters on
January 29th. If there is only one meeting you can make all year, this
one is it! Be sure to RSVP to (916) 632-7071.
Holiday Party Grand Success
The annual Placer Congress Holiday Party was held on December 12,
2000 at the home of newly elected President Paul Hrabal. The 35+ members
in attendance enjoyed great food and drink provided by our Hospitality
Committee of Murriel Oles and Sandy Hoffman.
Click here for more photos of the event!
Dan Walters: GOP Loses Out In Older 'Burbs
(Published November 10, 2000)
Between 1982 and 1990, there were eight top-of-the-ticket elections
in California – for President, Governor or U.S. Senator – and
Republicans won seven of them. Between 1992 and 2000, there were also
eight such high-profile contests in California, and Republicans won just
Something, obviously, has happened to the political landscape, and
with every passing election, it takes on an air of semi permanence.
Republicans can no longer assuage themselves by reciting the dirty
tricks played on GOP Senate candidate Bruce Herschensohn in 1992, or
Bill Cinton’s charisma, or Ross Perot’s vote-splitting presence, or
Dan Lungren’s inept campaign for governor in 1998. Nor does the
oft-chanted mantra about expanded Latino voting explain Republican woes,
although it contributes.
This week’s California electorate was
three-quarters Anglo, according to exit polling data, about what it has
been for several elections, and Latinos were still a fairly negligible
bloc at about 14 percent. Detailed exit polling data for the 2000
election and its recent predecessors, and an examination of
county-by-county voting patterns, indicate that California’s voters
are becoming highly fragmented along ethnic, gender, geographic,
economic, generational and lifestyle lines.
Texas Governor George W.
Bush, exit polling showed, won slight majorities among white and Asian
voters in California, for example, but was trounced among African
Americans and Latinos. An even more dramatic sociological split
developed between married and single voters. The former preferred Bush
to Vice President Al Gore by a 52 percent to 43 percent margin, while
single voters opted for Gore 2-1.
In geographic terms, California is
becoming two political states, as demonstrated not only by the
presidential vote but results of congressional and legislative contests.
Coastal and urban California is strongly Democratic and becoming more so
with every election. But interior California, both rural portions and
newly minted suburbs, are becoming more Republican.
left just one, very lonely, Republican holding a legislative or
congressional office in the Bay Area, Contra Costa County Assemblywoman
Lynn Leach. The county’s Republican state senator, Richard Rainey, was
ousted and Democrats picked up a congressional seat and an Assembly seat
on the San Francisco Peninsula that had long been held by the GOP.
Democrats’ march through affluent, older suburban communities is not
confined to Northern California. The same phenomenon is evident in
Southern California suburbs, such as the string of communities in the
foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains. Once solidly Republican, these
leafy communities have moved to the Democrats – the incredibly
expensive duel between Republican Congressman Jim Rogan and Democratic
State Senator Adam Schiff being just one example.
The shift in political
allegiance in these older suburbs, rooted in both changing demographics
and evolving issues, more than offsets growing Republicanism in
fast-growing interior valleys, which was demonstrated in Bush’s almost
total sweep of non-coastal counties and strong Republican showings in
interior legislative and congressional contests.
Education, gun control,
abortion rights and other visceral issues have become winners for
Democrats in the older suburbs, while the old Republican issues of crime
and military preparedness have faded. Indeed, given the overall dynamics
of the year, including their paucity of campaign funds, Republicans were
fortunate not to have fared worse in down-ballot contests than they did.
And with Democrats poised to redraw legislative and congressional
districts, it’s time for California GOP leaders to do some serious
thinking about their predicament.
Notice of Bylaws Changes
Pursuant to By-laws Article XIII, the Board of Directors proposes the
following By-laws amendments for consideration at the general meeting on
January 29, 2001.
ARTICLE V - BOARD OF DIRECTORS, OFFICERS and EXECUTIVE
Section 5.6 - C Second Vice President
Add final sentence to
read: Shall perform all requirements of reporting and record keeping as
required by the California Congress of Republicans (CCR).
Will transfer these duties from those enumerated for the Secretary and
bring our by-laws into conformance with the CCR’s by-laws.
ARTICLE V -
BOARD OF DIRECTORS, OFFICERS and EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
Section 5.6 - E
Delete final sentence making reference to reporting and record
keeping required by the California Congress of Republicans.
Transfers reporting duties to the 2nd Vice President and Membership
Chair, bringing our by-laws into conformance with CCR’s by-laws.
ARTICLE VI - COMMITTEES
Section 6.2 - Standing Committees
Delete . . .
“Finance, Hospitality, Parliamentary, Voter Registration/Precinct, Get
out the Vote, Newsletter and Audit” and substitute “Finance,
Hospitality, Voter Outreach, Events and Audit”.
amendment will reflect the actual standing committees as recommended by
the 2001-2002 Board of Directors.
ARTICLE VIII - MEETINGS
Section 7.2 -
Delete “shall be held bi-monthly” and substitute
Rationale: This amendment will reduce the number of
yearly meetings from six to four. Will allow the Congress to put on
events of higher quality by focusing resources on fewer events.
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