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2010 Republican Party of Minnesota State Convention

2010 May 4


First, I would like to thank all of the delegates to the 2010 State Convention for helping to create a convention for which all Republicans were able to unite under the conservative principles for which we stand. Secondly, I will go over the agenda, endorsements and the business of the convention for all those that were unable to attend.

On Thursday, the convention started with a bang. Campaigning for all of the candidates runing for the Republican endorsement was in high gear with delegates visiting hospitality suites and picking up t-shirts, buttons, and signs,  while the candidates worked the crowd. People were energized and ready to go. The highlight of the night was the endorsement for State Auditor. The candidates all gave great speeches, and state auditor candidate Tom Conlon gave delegates a surprise when he used his time to officially withdraw from the race. Pat Anderson was in the lead after the first ballot, but didn’t have enough votes to win the endorsement. Randy Gilbert and Jeff Wiita followed closely behind her. Delegates went through several ballots, with voting going until 2pm or later. I surrendered around 12:30pm, having to return home to get some sleep before Friday’s big endorsement for governor.

Returning the next morning, I was glad to hear that Pat Anderson had won the endorsement for State Auditor. On Thursday, you could feel the delegates excitement, but on Friday, the excitement was at fever pitch. The morning seemed to drag on for delegates eager to begin the endorsement for governor. Delegates received an update on Project Phoenix, which I feel will completely change the way we as a party will reach out to conservatives across the state. I encourage all of you involved with Voter ID and door-knocking to contact your local BPOU leader to receive information on Project Phoenix and attend a training session.

We also listened to several speakers, including Governor Tim Pawlenty, before finally getting to the item on the agenda that everyone was waiting for. The candidates all made fabulous speeches, getting the delegates in a frenzy. People were parading around with signs, ringing bells, waving American flags and cheering their hearts out for their favorite candidate. Marty Seifert and Tom Emmer ended their speeches with a bang with confetti canons and pyrotechnics. The first ballot showed Marty Seifert and Tom Emmer as the clear front runners, with Bill Haas, Phil Herwig, and Leslie Davis not receiving enough votes to continue on to the next round.

Voting continued until the third ballot was almost completed, when Marty Seifert gave the best concession speech I have ever heard. He graciously withdrew, encouraging all of the delegates to support Tom Emmer in his race for governor and asked all of his supporters to take off their Seifert t-shirts and buttons and put on Emmer for Governor shirts and buttons. The delegates all quickly complied with his request at a speed that was almost unreal. We are now a party united.

Attendance dropped on Saturday due to the fact that there were no other major endorsements. Although, people sometimes forget that the endorsements for the courts can be just as important as the others, if not more so. We heard some great speeches from judges running for the MN Supreme Court and the appellate court. They are getting the word out about the importance of our right to vote for judges in the state of Minnesota. Future Governor Tom Emmer also made another fantastic speech and delegates celebrated our newly united party. Then, we moved on to resolutions and the party platform.

I for one, was disappointed in the delegates when it came to the platform this year. Over the past 2 years I have become more and more involved in the Republican Party. One of the major complaints that I have heard from delegates and republicans throughout the state is that the platform has become to long. So long in fact, that it no longer serves any purpose but to act as a place where individual grievances can be recorded for seemingly all time… So, at the convention I expected delegates to do something about it. However, when efforts and ideas where put forth to trim the platform down to key principles it was shot down. I won’t go into this too much, but expect a future post on this subject. I just ask that Republicans start questioning what is truly important within this party and how we can promote our conservative message in a better way.

Overall, I give this convention two thumbs up!

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