Thursday, November 11, 2010

How to Win Friends and Influence People (Delaware GOP Edition)

No this is not a book report on the famous management book How to Win Friends and Influence People.  But a lot of what is in that book can be applied to rebuilding the Delaware Republican party.  At a time when it may appear the Republican party or conservative movement is fractured due to the recent primary, it really is not.

For the Republican Party to win in 2012, we must unite and remain focused on one goal - winning in 2012!  Winning elections for Republican candidates cannot be done with the conservative gloating and chest thumping because of the primary victory over moderate Mike Castle.  Nor can the leaders of the Republican party dismiss the conservative victory of the same.  The conservatives movement made significant strides in that primary win, but the path forward is a complicated one.

As written in the Picking Up the Pieces post, their is only one size fits all message that can applied to all three counties.  For Republicans to win in New Castle County, Republicans must run on fiscal conservatism.  This is much different than Sussex, which can run on both fiscal and social conservatism.  As the two factions of the conservative movement go head-to-head, one must realize that a victory on fiscal conservatism alone, is a victory for the conservative movement.  The movement wins, and taxpayers regardless of political party affiliation benefit with a greater chance of living the American dream.

This notion of advancing limited government, fiscal restraint, and lower taxation resonates and is emboldened by the various Tea Party groups throughout Delaware.  This group must also be given a seat at the table of how the Delaware Republican Party operates and chooses candidates moving forward.  The Republican Party of Delaware cannot survive without the Tea Party, and nor should the Tea Party operate without encouraging candidates to run under the Republican banner.  For limited government and fiscal restraint is the cornerstone of both the Republican party and also of the Tea Party.

As the two worlds collide, calm heads must prevail.  Past differences must be forgotten, and concrete discussions on building on what has been accomplished must commence.  Both sides are coming to the table with valid points that both deserve thought and consideration.  The months ahead as we move forward to put in new leadership and build the leadership will require listening on both sides of each other.  It will tough, as either side will try to make their case.  The Tea Party won the primary, and the leadership failed to back those victors.  The Tea Party cannot steamroll its way in to the leadership without a clear plan, for the old guard will push back hard.

A united Tea Party and Delaware GOP can move forward and turn Delaware red once again.  But the Tea Party must become part of the party. It must put up delegates.  It can challenge leadership slots, but based on principle and in a democratic forum by all registered Republicans.  And in turn the leadership of the Republican Party must respect the fiscal conservative message of the Tea Party for if it is loses this, it will die its own death.  Painfully and with loss dignity.

No matter who is at the table, or in charge - planning for victory in 2012 is vital.  Remember this passage from a dear friend of mine: If you fail to plan, plan to fail.


  1. Hmmm, either you are stealing ideas from my comments on other blogs, or we think alike.

    At any rate, the fact remains that COD was an extremely flawed candidate vis-a-vis 'other' flawed candidates in the 2010 mid-terms.

    Aside from her conceit and hubris, COD and her campaign quickly adopted the un-Delaware-like Machiavellian approach to politics. Or more colloquially, she wasn't a viable candidate because she is a social conservative who cloaked herself as a fiscal conservative. This fiscal tact was indeed a good way for her to hop onto the Tea Party Express' money train.

    Plus, who is stupid enough to run a hard-right primary campaign and then fail to understand the demographics of the Delaware electorate (moderate independents, liberals and 'some' conservatives).

    However, after much bloviating, my real point of this comment is to pose this question:

    How did 'other' establishment Republican state parties deal with Tea Party candidates that they did not like or approve of? (e.g., Kentucky, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania).

    My answer is: their candidates were not over-the-top and/or flawed as Delaware's candidate was. Heck, she even 'scared' Pat Toomey into issuing a 'presser' in which he had to differentiate and distance himself from COD in nearby Delaware. Moreover, the GOP 'wave election' hit everywhere EXCEPT Delaware, where down-ticket candidates got anihilated.

    The reality is, yes, A Lot of Delaware voters despised Mike Castle (career pol, RINO, etc); however, one needs a real plan and a real candidate to pull such a feat off.

    COD cannot simply blame everyone for her lose. Karl Rove, Dick Armey (Freedom Works), Charles Krauthammer and other seasoned and rational GOP strategists DID NOT back COD. Heck, even liberal king-makers like David Plouffe and Bill Clinton bristled at the idea of having COD on the Delaware ticket!

    Wake up! I applaud your self-immolation for COD as well as your intractable adulation for her, but...

  2. COD is not the issue, control of the party is the issue. When will the boneheads of the party wake up? They can't get a nominee for the New Castle County President race. Spence isn't going to do it. Kovach has no chance. Weiner? Come on. Maybe Protack can put up or shut up? Maybe he can get those Reagan D's, maybe?

  3. Polemical - I can attest that we are on the same page. I read Delaware Politics regularly but this came about after a conversation with a friend.

    Christine was not the problem. The media and the fascination with destroying her was the problem.