MassGOP out of Boston?

(I have been a long-time advocate of moving the HQ out of Boston.  Specifically anywhere between Waltham and Westboro.  What are your thoughts? – promoted by Cool Cal)

When I visited the state committee meeting, a number of people expressed a desire to see the MassGOP HQ moved.  Most of them wanted it outside of Boston.

I am thinking that Lexington might be good spot, both for the symbolic value and its proximity to mass transit.  Thoughts?

About KeithCMcCormic

  • If proximity to mass transit is a concern, then I don’t see why it should be moved from the current spot.  I’d guess that a great many people that volunteer to do grunt work at the Mass GOP are students from Boston area colleges and universities who use public transportation.  It isn’t going to make it easier to get their help by moving the HQ away from the green and red lines.

    Symbolic value is no value at all in my view.  

  • Based on population magnets based on swing areas, public transit, 128, 95, Mass Pike, media outlets, and available space in addition to cost effective space…

    Waltham is, without a doubt, the best location for the Party Headquarters.

  • One in Waltham (I agree with VE that it would be a good spot to have a massgop office there) and the other in Springfield/West Springfield. This way republicans out here have an opportunity to help out the state party cause I don’t know about you guys but commuting from Springfield to Boston regularly isn’t exactly an option for me right now lol

  • republicanvoices
  • As a fiscal conservative from the West,I would be the first to jump on that idea.  In truth however you need an office close to the Beacon Hill and Beacon Hill media for rapid response.  

    We tried this once (I think we were in Wakefield) and it did not work well.  Keep your thinking caps on.

  • Is there any information to prove or disprove the notion that being downtown leads to increased volunteers from college kids or people who work downtown?

    If there is no proof of increased benefit, I would agree that Waltham is the central location for everything east of 495.  But to be centrally located to the whole state, something in Westborugh (495/9/Pike) might be better.

     

  • I’m partial to having the HQ in Boston if for no other reason than it’s proximity to the center of political & news power.  That being said, if something cost effective (I mean that literally, both cost affordable & effective as a mean of political activism, party building, etc) were to materialize then I certainly would be in favor of investigating any & all reasonable proposal.

    That being said, wherever a HQ is located I firmly believe that it must be accessible via the T and within a walking distance from either a subway or commuter rail stop.  Granted, that need is slightly less as we get away from Boston/128 area but we should be available to the most forms of transportation as possible.

    I did not have a personal working knowledge of how things worked while we were out in Wakefied.  I don’t really think that duplicate HQs would be a workable solution.  Perhaps establishing satelite offices during election season, budget permitting, would be both an equitable & electorally wise solution.  

    I’m not wedded to having an HQ on Merrimac Street or within Boston, proper but it would take good & hard sell for me to support a totally drastic relocation.  

  • Does anyone know how much money would actually be saved?  From OCPF reports posted on the Mass Republican Forum, I don’t believe that rent was a significant portion of the costs.

    Not that saving even a few thousand dollars would be a bad thing, but people would have to be able to compare the cost savings to the value of the qualitative benefits (access to press/State House) of being in Boston.  

  • I guess having Mitt come down to the Merrimac Street office to make fund raising calls made sense at it was so close, but without a Republican Governor who knows.  

    But I will say this, being close to the State House does allow very easy access for quick media hits or protests in front of the state house well – as well as rapid response to State House media in the middle of a campaign.  

    I really would hate to lose  such quick access to the media and to the state house.  But I think having a separate place for volunteer activities makes sense as well.  If you are talking about $20K in office costs to have a separate office in Waltham or the Worcester area during campaign season,  I would think about it.  

  • Generally, we are looking at just the Chair or the ED doing a “media” hit or going to the State House.

    With media, you always need to go to their studio, reguardless, so wether it si a drive in, or taking the T over, or a cab ride…etc…  is it really a major difference.

    I mean, the only “instant” thing to do is call into talk radio, and you can do that from any land line.

    Does proximity really matter?

    Hell, NESN has their studio in Watertown, and that isnt really “near” the Boston Garden or Fenway.

  • I was thinking about all the times the MassGOP would get interns and others – they hear about a last minute press conference from an opponent – in front of the State House, say Deval and they would send over people to get in the story.  Also just to quickly tape and listen to these last minute press conferences is huge.  

    If Cahill does an announcement for Governor, you have maybe 15 minutes to get someone there and film it – you need some staffer nearby to get the tape.  

    Having rapid response means more than just sending over the ED or press person, sometimes it doesn’t mean anything more than filming it and recording what someone said.  

  • Ok, so how about this.

    We all dedicate one square foot of our homes to being a spot where we do Party activity, that way, the Party Headquarters is everywhere?

    As long as a computer and a phone is within reach, we have everything we need. (If you are reading this, I knwo you have a computer)

    Thoughts?

  • Two big advantages:

    1) Cost:  Boston is expensive.  You can get a bigger place at a lower cost by moving outside the city.  The party just doesn’t have the money.  I’d rather spend what we have on direct candidate support.

    2) Location:  Let’s face it, we’re not going to win the seats inside 128.  Outside the 128 area will be better for the campaigns and candidates.

  • The only question that should be asked is “Is the Boston Location worth the $185K we pay for the rent, equipment, phone, parking, intern, copy equipment, etc., etc. etc., or can we put that money to better use to elect candidates?”

    This is all about getting true Republicans ELECTED. Can we get a bigger bang for our buck being creative here with satelite offices, alternative sites, regional centers…yup.

  • JasonBurkins

    I’d like to suggest that the location means far significantly less than the leadership and activity that goes on inside and more importantly, outside its four walls.

    The headquarters could be on the top of Mount Greylock as long as it is focusing on the right priorities and building the party from the ground up.

    Back before the election and before my endorsement of the President-elect, I laid out what I believe are the top priorities the party should focus on in a post to the MassRepublicanForum. I will cut and paste it below for any who didn’t read it then.

    First off, we as Massachusetts Republicans continue, time and time again, to try to build the party from the top, down. We focus on the “big races”, the high profile races such as senator and governor and even when we achieve some semblance of success on that level, we end up sitting back and expecting those elected officials to be the ones who build and grow the party. Since the Weld election in 1992 on through the Romney administration, the top, down approach has not worked. We have to develop a serious long term and comprehensive strategy to grow the party in each city and town at the ward and precinct level. That means we need to have a state committee and state party operation that is focused on the actual grassroots, not an extension of any one particular elected official’s campaign organization. While we had Republican governors, we allowed them to hijack the party and use it to protect themselves and their own political interests, rather than the interests of the party. And too often the two interests were in conflict. When a governor knows he will only be in for 4 or 8 years, he isn’t going to be the one who institutes a long term strategy to build the party, he is going to use it to his own advantage for as long as he needs it. Its a natural political reaction, but it does nothing to grow the ranks and health of the party. We need an independent and focused state party organization that is committed toward building the party on the local level as its first priority, whether or not a “celebrity candidate” emerges at the top of the ticket. It should be the sole mission of the state committee right now to be establishing and nurturing chartered Republican committees in each and every town and each and every city ward. The bulk of all resources should be focused on recruitment of committee members, supporting committee awareness both financially and with resources and marketing materials, ideas, encouragement. There should be a MassGOP field coordinator in central Mass, one in Springfield and one in the Berkshires working in each community within their territory to locate potential committee members, motivate them and support them and an office in each location dedicated to providing support, resources and materials as well as meeting space and phone banking space for the committees and candidates of those regions. Once you have thriving committees, you have a healthy and active Republican base of support, potential candidates for office and a built in wealth of volunteers. The state party should also be focused right now on recruiting candidates for town and city offices in 2009, whether the community’s elections are partisan or not. For too long we’ve used non-partisan elections as an excuse to stay out of the fray and its time that nonsense comes to an end. The truth is, there is no such thing as non-partisan elections and the Democrats know it. They use the city council and boards of selectman as a recruiting ground for the legislature like mesquitos use swamps. We’ve been asleep on the local level so long that frankly we can make inroads on electing Republicans to offices in cities and towns simply by showing up.  I liken it to the difference between the Red Sox and the Yankees in the last 8 or so years. The Red Sox have had their share of major veteran signings and big name trades, but they have also had a determined commitment to the success of drafting, signing and developing young players in their minor league farm system. This approach has ensured that they have maintained a steady influx of new, talented and driven competitors year after year on the field. While the Yankees approach has been to focus on the big league level, to sign risky, aging veterans and hope for the best, while ignoring to a large extent their farm system. It has proven costly and the Yankees haven’t won a World Series in quite a while. Meanwhile the Sox have won two. While I hate to link the MassGOP approach with that of the dreaded Yankees, I believe the analogy fits quite well. You don’t build a house without a foundation and expect the integrity of its structure to hold. Why do we continue to expect that approach to work here?

    Jason Burkins

  • Vote3rdpartynow

    and instead invest the money into a kick-ass “GOP BUS” that travels around and gets lots of attention.  Customize it with some decals on the outside.  Inside you can stock it full of office equipment and have a rolling office.  That way it can go from town to town attracting attention and causing a stir.

    Don’t tell me you don’t like this idea……

  • This is a good time to pick up a building at a bargain price.

    Multi-unit so rent can help pay the bills.

    Handicapped accessable PLEASE!