The rest of the nation commemorated Martin Luther King, Jr. Day today, and Barack Obama was sworn in to a second term as the 44th President of the United States.
Here in Orange County, however, the Republican Central Committee is gathering to swear in its 2013-2014 membership, elect its 2013-2014 officers, and hear from Jim Brulte.
Captain Emily Sanford delivered the invocation and new Central Committee member Peggy Huang led the Pledge of Allegiance.
Central Committee Chairman Scott Baugh called the roll.
State Senate Republican Leader Bob Huff swore in the Central Committee members. Huff joked that it was nice to be in a place where there’s actually multitudes of elected Republicans.
Lucille Kring, Henry Charoen, Robert Hammond, Tony Beall, Mike Munzing, Scott Voigts, Cecilia Iglesias, Anna Bryson, Tom Tait, Jesse Petrilla, Travis Allen, Don Wagner, Greg Sebourn, Bill Brough, Tim Shaw, Fred Whitaker, Todd Spitzer, Jeff Lalloway, Deborah Pauly, Steve Nagel, Mark McCurdy, Matt Harper, Steven Choi, Allan Mansoor, Dean Grose, Mark Schwing, and Craig Young were the elected officials introduced.
Long Pham announced he is running for the 34th Senate District in 2014. Anna Bryson confirmed she has filed paperwork to run for the 73rd Assembly District in 2014. Baron Night announced he was running for Buena Park City Council in 2014.
At 7:32 PM, John Warner nominated Scott Baugh for re-election as Chairman.
At 7:33 PM, Mary Young nominated and Tim Whitacre seconded John Warner for re-election as First Vice Chair.
At 7:34 PM, Bill Brough nominated Mary Young for re-election as Second Vice Chair.
At 7:35 PM, Mary Young nominated and John Warner seconded Peggy Huang for Secretary.
At 7:35 PM, Kermit Marsh nominated and Robert Hammond seconded Mark Bucher for re-election as Treasurer.
At 7:36 PM, Mike Munzing withdrew his candidacy for Assistant Treasurer and nominated TJ Fuentes, with a second from Jon Fleischman.
At 7:36 PM, Pat Shuff nominated and Lucille Kring seconded Norm Dickinson as Sergeant-at-Arms.
At 7:37 PM, the entire slate of executive committee officers was elected unanimously.
Chairman Scott Baugh reappointed Kermit Marsh as Parliamentarian.
At 7:38 PM, Orange County Central Committee Chairman Scott Baugh introduced former Senator Jim Brulte, who is running unopposed for California Republican Party Chairman.
Brulte said he was elected to the San Bernardino County Republican Central Committee at the age of 18. After working in DC, Brulte returned to San Bernardino County as Executive Director of the Central Committee. Brulte had painted the Republican Party headquarters in San Bernardino at the age of 10.
Brulte outlined his top priorities:
1. The CRP is hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt. He wants to rebuild a statewide donor base of small donors, medium donors, and large donors. The CRP only has three employees currently.
2. The CRP must rebuild and expand the grassroots to protect David Valadao and Gary Miller; capture the seats formerly held by Brian Bilbray, Mary Bono Mack, and Dan Lungren; capture the seat held by Lou Correa; and protect the seats held by Eric Linder, Jeff Gorell, and Mike Morrell.
Deborah Pauly asked Brulte about the Tea Party. Brulte said anyone who supports Republican principles of limited government would be welcome and are the core of the grassroots.
Marcia Gilchrist asked about CRP headquarters. Brulte said the CRP headquarters are in a state of disrepair and need rehabilitation.
Teresa Hernandez asked about Hispanic and Latino outreach and about immigration policy. Brulte said the CRP must reach out to people of every community, Latinos, African-Americans, and every community out there. Brulte said it is not the CRP Chair’s job to pontificate on policy issues, it is the CRP Chair’s job to raise money. He said it is Congress’s responsibility to legislate on immigration. Brulte says he wants to focus on the nuts and bolts; he will be appearing on television, on radio, and in newspapers, far less often than previous CRP chairs, so he can focus on nuts and bolts.
Dean Grose asked about reinvigorating the CRP. Brulte said he gained seats during his tenures as Republican Leader in each house of the Legislature. He said the CRP is severely behind technologically.
Mike Withrow urged people to donate more money. Despite his blue collar profession, Withrow has been able to donate $1000 each year for years.
Outgoing CRP Vice Chair Steve Baric spoke of Brulte’s accomplishments in the Legislature and urged support for Brulte for CRP Chair.
At 7:57 PM, Jon Fleischman moved and Mary Young seconded for the OC GOP to endorse Jim Brulte for CRP Chair. The motion passed by acclimation.
Baugh then outlined the top lessons of 2012.
1. GOTV and grassroots matter. He cited numerous instances of close races and noted that a shift in just 500,000 votes in four states out of well over 100,000,000 votes in fifty states could have made Mitt Romney president.
2. Messengers matter. Baugh noted Orange County’s population is like few other metropolitan areas, with 34% Latino and 18.5% Asian. Republicans has lost 7% registration in the last decade, so Baugh says the GOP must work to fight this trend by better engaging Latinos and Asians.
3. Message and tone matter. Baugh said thoughts and ideas are more important than feelings, but properly framing thoughts and ideas are key. Baugh called the Republican Party the party of hope, opportunity, and prosperity for all. Baugh expressed disapproval of Romney’s 47% remark. Baugh pointed to Ted Cruz’s language of opportunity conservatism. He said the term of “limited government” is meaningless to the unemployed or the parents with children in poor schools but “removing barriers and regulations impeding job creation” and “giving parents choices” are the language of opportunity conservatism. He said conservative ideas must be described in how they can help advance opportunity. Baugh said immigration policies are out of date, unenforced, or unenforceable. He said there is a labor supply in Mexico and a labor demand in the US, and people in Mexico are seeking a better life. He said America allows people to seek a better life and asked “who among us” would not come to America from Mexico to seek a better life. Baugh said neither amnesty nor deportation is the answer; it lies somewhere in the middle of those two extremes, a solution that respects dignity and the human spirit. He said Republican policies must offer opportunity to all.
After a brief recess, the 65th District named Alexandria Coronado as its Executive Committee representative, and the 69th named Charles Hart as its Executive Committee representative.
For the Financial Review Committee, each district named the following members:
55th – Brenda McCune
65th – Baron Night
68th – Fred Whitaker
69th – Charles Hart
72nd – Steve Nagel
73rd – Greg Woodard
74th – John Draper
These seven people comprise the entire Financial Review Committee.
Chairman Scott Baugh presented the Local Elected Official of the Year Award to Irvine Mayor Pro Tem Jeff Lalloway for his successful efforts at building a team that toppled the Larry Agran machine in Irvine. Baugh spoke of sending the party’s financial and grassroots resources to Irvine.
Lalloway thanked Mayor Steven Choi, Councilwoman Christina Shea, and Council candidate Lynn Schott. Lalloway spoke of losses at the federal and state levels but the hope that Irvine Council provided, with the police union endorsing Agran’s entire slate and with $1,200,000 spent by Agran’s side including $300,000 spent by Agran personally.
Chairman Scott Baugh presented the Legislator of the Year Award to both Congressman John Campbell and Assemblyman Don Wagner for their efforts in bankrolling much of the OCGOP’s efforts in Irvine.
Wagner thanked Lalloway, Choi, Shea, Baugh, the Central Committee, and all the volunteers who helped in Irvine.
On Campbell’s behalf, Lou Penrose spoke of Campbell’s great delight at the Irvine results and the importance of team efforts. Noting his own Italian heritage, Penrose spoke of doing this as a family effort.
Chairman Scott Baugh announced that Assemblyman Don Wagner was renting a currently-vacant portion of the OC GOP Headquarters in Tustin for his campaign office.
Rhonda Rohrabacher and Assemblyman Don Wagner presented the Anna Woods Memorial HQ Volunteer of the Year Award to Naz Namazi for her efforts at the OCGOP HQ and in Huntington Beach. Namazi also received awards from the offices of Senator Mimi Walters and Supervisor Pat Bates.
Captain Emily Sanford, Zonya Townsend, and Assemblyman Don Wagner presented the Captain Emily F. Sanford, USN (Ret.) Volunteer of the Year Award to Chalone and Harold Warman of San Clemente. The Warmans called themselves “rare Republican teachers,” as Chalone Warman was a teacher at San Clemente High School and Harold Warman taught at San Diego State University.
Irvine Mayor Steven Choi spoke to the Central Committee. He quipped, “It took a village to elect a Republican Mayor of Irvine.” Choi thanked Irvine Mayor Pro Tem Jeff Lalloway, Irvine Councilwoman Christina Shea, Congressman John Campbell, Assemblyman Don Wagner, former Supervisor Bill Campbell, and the volunteers who made his victory possible. Choi also reported Republicans now have a registration advantage over Democrats among Orange County’s Korean-Americans.
At 9:08 PM, the Central Committee adjourned.