Kirsten Hughes, Statement of Candidacy for MassGOP Chair

( – promoted by Rob “EaBo Clipper” Eno)

I received this email today from Kirsten Hughes, declared candidate for the chairmanship of the Massachusetts Republican Party.  To my knowledge, Kirsten is the first candidate to officially announce her candidacy.

Let us see if this kicks off a wave other formal announcements of candidacy.  The next State Committee meeting, which is when the election will be held, has yet to be announced but notification of it should come shortly.  It will occur sometime in January 2013.

The only editing that I’ve made was to redact Kirsten’s cell phone number & email address.  While the email went to at least the entire State Committee, I’m not comfortable giving out such things on a presumably widely read public blog even if she uses it for political/business reasons.  I’ll leave it Kirsten, or someone on her behalf, can disseminate that information.

December 6, 2012

Dear State Committee Members,

I am writing to you today to declare my candidacy for Chair of the Massachusetts Republican Party. In light of Bob Maginn’s decision not to seek reelection, I have called Bob to let him know of my intentions as I have great respect and admiration for him. From my position on Senator Scott Brown’s finance team, I saw first-hand how diligently he worked to raise money for our candidates up and down the ticket. The impressive level of funding he delivered to legislative candidates is a strategy I look forward to progressing.  There is no doubt that Bob will retain an active role in the Party and we are stronger for his leadership.

Many of you know me as an employee of the MassGOP, when in 2010 I ran our very successful state convention in Worcester and served as the political field director, when we more than doubled our House caucus members in the State Legislature. Most recently, I served as the Deputy Finance Director for Senator Scott Brown’s re-election campaign, helping raise more money than any other incumbent U.S. Senate campaign in the country. Last year, I was honored to be elected City Councilor in Quincy after running a true grassroots campaign in a district with only 10% registered Republicans!

It was during my time working at the MassGOP helping others run their campaigns (and by running my own campaign for elected office) that I discovered the value of our Republican town and city committees to local candidates. I received critically important help from the Quincy Republican City Committee and could not have won without their support. A commitment to expanding Republican leadership at the local level is vital to establishing a statewide farm team of candidates. In order to win at the local level, we must recruit and train new candidates and reach out to new voters.

As a locally elected official, I know it takes hard work, not just talk, to win! As Republicans, we know we have the right message and solutions for the Massachusetts voters.  It’s a matter of getting out there and getting our message to their door step. I’m fully committed to ensuring that the MassGOP provides our candidates and local committees with the data and people needed to win. We must prioritize our Republican community leaders and lift them into the elected arena.

To prepare for 2014, the MassGOP must set out in a new conservative direction and present a crystal clear message of bringing balance to Beacon Hill. The recipe includes long hours of face to face campaigning. The Massachusetts Republican Party needs to be competitive in the areas of party registration, fundraising, and candidate recruitment. I have worked in all these areas during the last few cycles and have what it takes to move us forward.

I have been tremendously fortunate to work closely with the leaders of our Party, and passionate supporters who are committed to building our future. I have had the privilege of working with many of you and your candidates. I promise to be a full-time Chair who will be in the field every day providing conservative leadership with a commitment to strengthening our grassroots organizations. In fact, I am grassroots!

As a life-long Massachusetts Republican, I know our mission is difficult; but, more importantly, I care deeply about our future. With great excitement, I look forward to meeting the challenges we face and winning seats at every level of government! I stand with and admire those who run for any elected position as a Republican in our Commonwealth. Thus, I greatly respect the role you have in regards to our future. Before I ask for your vote to be the next Chair of the Massachusetts Republican Party, I want to earn it! If you do not hear from me first, please feel free to call me on my cell phone at xxx-xxx-xxxx or email me at Also, please visit my website,, that will be up and running this week, to find out more about my qualifications and vision for the future of the MassGOP. Thank you for your time.


Kirsten Hughes

About Brock N. Cordeiro


  1. First, I once met Ms. Hughes. (I am sure she does not remember me.) I thought she was a really nice, positive, and professional person. I am glad she is active in the party.

    However, her introduction speech is utterly detached from the severity of the challenges we face. Lots more tired slogans about the local level, a farm team, etc, etc. Everyone says that every time in every election.

    In light of the party now being unable to win at the statewide or federal level, this kind of agenda isn’t enough. I would want a chairman or chairwoman to address the following things:

    1. Many, including Richard Tisei and Senator Brown, have said that the national GOP brand hurts us badly in this state. What, specifically, would you do about that?

    2. Fundraising continues to be a major problem, despite how wealthy this state is and how many successful people there are in this state who are certainly not Democrats. Why can’t we get them to give money? What would you do differently?

    3. The party is way too old, way too white, and as you certainly know, way too male. What would you do about that?

    4. The conservative base of the party is politically very far from the views of the unenrolled voter and their voices make it hard for the main street Republicans to be heard. How will we get a bigger tent that anyone wants to walk into if the angry people of our party are in there making a lot of noise?

    5. The technology situation of the party is absurd. The SC has begun some reform efforts. How would you approach this topic?

    6. We get crushed in the cities for most of our elections. (This guarantees defeat for almost all state senate seats, for instance.) Why is this happening? What can be done about it? How much of this is policy and how much is branding?

    7. Should the party platform include the “social issues” when an unshakeable majority of the state does not support these positions, such as the ones adopted by the SC at their last meeting?

    I could go on and on. But what about all this stuff?


    – Ed

  2. Republican Ram Rod Radio

    Can we have a ruling on this?  Is it chairman or chairwoman if a woman is elected?  I thought we hashed it out before with Jen Nassour and we ruled it was “Chairman”  But then again I remember giving her so much shit that I may have just dreamed it.  

  3. According to all my Democrat friends, all women have left the Republican party and are now fighting tooth-and-nail to keep their unalienable constitutional right to free birth control.  The rest are trying to work harder than their male counterparts as they only get paid about 70 cents on the dollar.  How is it that Kirsten has better things to do?  

    I have other questions for Kirsten as well:

    1. Is Kirsten a Cherokee?  

    2. Does she have sick dog to humanize her run for office?

    3. Does she pratice law without a MA law license?

    4. Is she paid $350,000 a year as a part timer in her current job?

    5. Is she an Oakie down to her toes?

    If she can answer ‘No’ to any of these questions it is unlikely that anyone from Massachusetts will support her.  

    I guess the only true candidate, seeing as RRRR has withdrawn is…..well……still…!

  4. I’d redact involvement with the fiasco-laden convention.

    Improper ballot tally sheets, lost reservations, bad communication….

  5. Your comments pick up on the tired old moderate meme of “we cant win unless we move to the center left…waaaa….waaaaa.” If you want weak…thats the definition of weak.

    Ms. Hughes has at least run and won a race herself (as a conservative Republican in a Democrat city)so thats a good starting point.

    She is correct that Republicans need a grassroots approach…the reason it hasnt worked is that we never implement it. We always defer to the big statewide race that we can never hope to win until we pick up at least 50 state house seats. Without more Republican Reps we can never win a Senate seat, or any constitutional statewide seat. So get to work electing Republican boards of Selectmen, School Committees and other local offices to build the farm team for solid and expewrienced state rep candidates.

    The “brand” is fine but it won’t survive if we keep nominating lousy candidates that don’t do the hard political work necessary to build coalitions and consolidate political power.

  6. Ed, how come you haven’t commented on my recent diary about the Life Begins at Conception Act? It seems pretty hypocritical of you to stay silent on the most extreme piece of anti-abortion legislation that anyone ever came up with, one that would prohibit not just abortions but also make IVF risky and expensive if not outright illegal, ban certain types of contraception, and force us to implant every frozen embryo in a woman’s womb, even cloned embryos.

    We need to tell the national Republicans that promote these extreme Personhood bills and state amendments that they are hurting the brand and making it hard to elect Republicans.

    Here is a story on how Paul’s antics are “exasperating” Senate Leader Reid.

    An exasperated Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said that he would not allow a vote on an amendment clarifying that life begins at conception, which Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) offered to a flood insurance bill.

    Paul has been known to offer unrelated amendments to Senate bills throughout the 112th Congress, often frustrating Reid. On Tuesday morning, Reid indicated he has had enough, and said Republicans need to control Paul or run the risk that the flood bill might not go through as planned.

    “I’m told last night that one of our Republican senators wants to offer an amendment – listen to this one – wants to offer an amendment on when life begins,” Reid said. “There will not be a vote on that on flood insurance. We’ll either do flood insurance with amendments that deal with flood insurance, or we won’t do it, we’ll have an extension.

    “I don’t understand what this is all about,” Reid added. “But I want everyone to know: This flood insurance is extremely important. The big pushers of this bill are Republicans senators, veteran Republican senators.

    “They better work on their side of the aisle, because I am not going to put up with that,” he concluded. “If the Republicans won’t stand up to that, to the person who’s going to that, I’m not going to.”

    The Senate is working on a bill, S. 1940, that would reauthorize the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) for five years, and reform it to allow the nation’s only flood insurer to increase premiums so the program can work its way out of a nearly $18 billion deficit. The program expires at the end of July.

    Senators are working on an agreement on which amendments to the bill might come up. Paul’s amendment, introduced on Monday, is called the Life at Conception Act, and would “ensure equal protection for right to life of each born and preborn human person.”

    Paul’s language also states that “Congress hereby declares that the right to life guaranteed by the Constitution is vested in each human being.”

  7. If you think the brand is fine, you are not living in reality. Go to any urban area and ask random people what they think of the Republican party. Or any group of people between the ages of 18 and 30. Talk to people in an ethnic minority group. Talk to college-educated unmarried women. Talk to families and friends of gay people. Heck, talk to anyone who isn’t like you at all.

    If you think that the majority of people have a positive view of the party, you are a fool.

    We need Republican leaders who “get it”. They must see that we are not going to “organize” our way out of this. We are not going to win elections by focusing on the grassroots. We must see first that the voters of this state are simply not buying what we are selling, and  a more conservative version of the product we have is not the answer.

    I am not recommending a move to the middle. The left-center-right metaphor of politics is limiting and often leads us astray. We will not gain respect by labeling ourselves “moderates.” For example, I am proudly conservative. But my brand of conservatism – perhaps like that of Ms. Hughes – does not offend all the people I know who aren’t registered Republicans.

    We must be reasonable. We must look for real solutions. We must not offend the political sensibilities of most people who live in this state. We must start listening to the demographic groups who have turned away from us and hand elections to Democrats. We must abandon the attitudes and priorities of the national GOP and figure out how Republican principles will actually help people.

    If Ms. Hughes can do that, fantastic.  

  8. All you like and all you will hear are the impression du jour based on shallow knowledge. Impressions change when people’s lives are affected by lousy policy and bad politics. Every group you listed would vote for a Republican if they knew the truth about us. Instead we let the other side define us and don’t stand up for our priciples for fear of alienating peoiple who would never vote for us anyway.

    I disagree with you…it IS all about organization and grassroots activism…and we will not get the critical mass of power we need to affect elections in one or even 2 election cycles…the Democrats spent years in exile organizing their constituent groups in order to emerge victorious the last few cycles. Right now we are where they were in 2004 when everyone was telling Democrats their “brand” was dead. Brand means nothing without the organization and political will to consolidate power.

  9. the brand is toxic both here and on a larger scale. On issues, many of the times our party has the correct stance (national polling data backs up our stances popularity on a great many issues, socially and economically), though some, are not.

    If people largely agree with us on issues, then why do we lose? Is it because we have poor candidates? Perhaps, but I don’t think that virtually every 2012 candidate for the State Legislature were poor candidates and almost every challenger lost. Mitt Romney was also not a poor candidate, and he lost as well.

    As EdFactor suggests, ask your average voter what they think of when they think “Republican”. It is not good for us or for our party’s future. Grassroots movements are vital, but we have to rebrand our party and rid it of the toxicity it has at this point to really show that we are the party of the individual for the individual and not a group of tired old white men.

  10. Whether you support Kirsten Hughes, Rick Green, or someone else for MassGOP Chair… this RMG group diary has been hijacked for John Howard’s personal crusade.

  11. Ed steered the discussion to his favorite topic of how the national brand is hurting Republicans here, and asked what Hughes would do about it, which I found odd, since he doesn’t seem to be doing anything about it himself. Try to keep up.

  12. I personally recall exactly 1 problem in my experience at the 2010 MassGOP Convention and that was with the credentialing of 1 of my town’s delegates.  There were two gentlemen by the same name but different municipalities and apparently someone only processed one gentleman and assumed the other was a paperwork mistake.

    I brought the matter to Kirsten’s attention and she personally, and very swiftly, corrected the mistake and the gentleman from my down was admitted as a delegate.

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