SC members should NOT publicly endorse chair candidates

(An interesting take.  But this is how it has always been done, in every election, and pretty much in every state.  The goal obviously is to get a clear winner going into  the election, and show momentum. – promoted by Rob “EaBo Clipper” Eno)

After watching the growing tally of State Committee Members who have publicly endorsed people running for Chairman, I have decided that this practice should be discouraged because it is bad for the integrity and outcome of the process.

We aren’t even close to the meeting of the SC where the vote will take place. But now, at least 30 votes are off the table. What happens when the deciding endorsement is publicly listed on someone’s website? Does that mean we just call the whole damned vote off?  What would that meeting look like if everyone knew that someone “already won?” Is that what we want?

I would like to think that the State Committee would take its job more seriously. I would like to think that at the meeting to elect a new Chairman that there would be discussion among the members and that all candidates would have a chance. Take my friend David D’Arcangelo, who is running for chair. He has a detailed proposal on what he will do as chair. But what if he doesn’t get to make his pitch? What if a SC member, who is friends with Ms. Hughes, agreed to give him her vote before he even knew David was running or saw his proposal? Does that make sense? Of course not. That SC member should only vote for Ms. Hughes in light of all the candidates and their proposals. Anything else feels like an exercise in power and behind-the-scenes dealmaking.

You might say, “Come on, Ed – that’s politics.”  And it is. But there is, at the very minimum, a need to provide the appearance that each SC member is thoughtfully evaluating all of the candidates and their plans. I would also like to think that just maybe, an SC member who had been certain he would vote for one candidate, would, upon hearing the pitch of another at the official meeting, decide to change his mind. But, if he had already “committed” to vote for someone publicly, would he change his mind?

I do not support any official action to bar SC members from endorsing people for the Chairmanship. What I would like is for the members to alter their behavior in this matter. If they want to write a non-binding letter of reference or post some positive thoughts on a candidate’s website, fine. But they should make it crystal clear that writing something positive is not a binding commitment to vote for that person. I know that SC members will say that their endorsement was not a binding commitment. Do you really think that’s how it looks? Did the 20-8 story on RMG make it look that way? Think again.

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20 comments

  1. So if I were Joe Smith and was running and racked up some endorsements, I might make this statement on my website:

    “I am honored that some state committee members have publicly said they believe I am qualified for this position and that they agree with my agenda. However, I fully expect each member to evaluate all candidates at the meeting where the election will take place, and I consider no member bound to vote for me because of their statements of support. We all want the best person to lead this party and I support a deliberative process for finding that leader.”

    Of course, if some of these endorsements really were ironclad quid-pro-quo arrangements, then I guess you can’t really do that, eh? 😉

  2. …your preferred candidate(s) are spamming RMG & facebook to the annoyance of everyone, and your upset that it’s not working?

    Has it occurred to you that the ONLY electorate is the SC members, and perhaps, just maybe, Mr. Green (and Ms. Hughs) are sharing their respective vision for the future of the MassGOP not with random members of the Greater Boston Young Republicans Facebook group, but the actual members of the State Committee!  Because it appears to be working!  they’ve convinced a U.S. Senator and 30+ members of the SC to cast their lot with their campaigns.

    Here’s a question for you.  Why are David and Dean wasting their time on websites, Facebook messages, and RMG posts?  Why aren’t they just sending that information to the SC members and actually trying to win votes?

    Another question for you.  How can I trust someone to to able to convince the average Massachusetts voter to change their voting habit, and vote Republican when they, in three weeks, haven’t been able to convince a single member of the 80 member State Committee to publicly say “I’m voting for Dean/David?”

    Basically, your post here boils down to “My Candidate is not only losing, but losing in a public way, and I’d rather delude myself for another month that he/they might actually get a vote.”

  3. Ed,

    I believe that a candidate for Chair needs to be nominated at the meeting held for election of the Chair by a Regular State Committee member.  Therefore, I would have to presume that there is at least one member willing to stand and nominate Dean and/or Dave (I feel comfortable with this presumption as I do not believe that they would be running for Chair if they could not even receive a nomination)  so why isn’t that person willing to publicly associate their name with the Dean/David candidacy?  

  4. I refuse to publicly endorse any candidate for chair. But privately I support Rick Green.

  5. Ed,

    You already admitted that this is politics. This is how partisan people work, they tend to choose and support a person publicly in hopes to sway the vote. It’s not going to change, and instead of complaining about it use it to your advantage.

    Lets just be honest, the two main candidates in this race are Hughes and Green. Hughes is being backed mainly by SC members called “the Establishment” and Green is being backed by a diverse group of SC members. Then we have David/Dean who are the paper candidates.

    I haven’t met David, but I have met Dean, and he is a great guy. But the problem is they jumped in the race too late, they didn’t look for support prior to entering, and their ticket thing isn’t a good idea. First, they are taking votes away from each other. Second, the by-laws make it clear only one of them can get paid so that means is one does win they would have to change the by-laws which is unlikely. Lastly, they have no experience with the state committee (Hughes was  a staffer and green is a member of the SC).

    So I have to agree with Paul. This seems more of a complaint that dean/david aren’t getting support, rather than SC publicly endorsing candidates.

  6. Why not have each candidate post a 5 minute video on Red Mass group outlining what they want to accomplish as Chair.  

    Then we can talk to our SC people, not that it would do any good.

    Just think there has to be an easier way

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