By Elisha Dorfsmith
A few weeks after Coconino County Republican Precinct Committeemen failed to pass a resolution condemning the state party for breaking their own rules, the Coconino County GOP as a whole has penned a letter to the state party listing their grievances about the State Convention.
Coconino County Republican Chair Diana Arendt sent the following to state party officers on September 5th:
September 5, 2012
Dear AZ Republican Party Officers:
Earlier this year The Coconino County Republican Committee elected 21 delegates to represent our county at the 2012 quadrennial state convention. According to the Continuing Bylaws of the Arizona Republican Party, the purpose of this convention includes: “the election of delegates and alternates to the national convention, both at large and representing congressional districts, and the election of the National Committeeman and Committeewoman.” The election of National Committeewoman was not performed, unfortunately, and remains unconfirmed.
A letter to the EXCOMM members from Chairman Morrissey has been distributed with a plan to address the incomplete election of National Committeewoman. We feel the solution presented is not an appropriate course of action. We believe the elected delegates are being deprived of their vote, which in turn is being granted to a nominating committee of a select few. Also, the representation on this committee is not divided in a way that reflects the delegate apportionment granted for the convention.
There is a paragraph in the EXCOMM letter that says “all of the business listed in the convention call that had not been completed had “fallen to the ground.” We feel that the election had been completed and only the runoff remained to be brought to the floor for a vote. The two National Committeewoman candidates that would have been on the runoff ballot should be the only two candidates considered for the position at this time. Allowing the nominating committee to consider candidates that did not complete the necessary steps to become National Committeewoman during the convention should not be acknowledged.
During the convention, Chairman Morrissey announced from the podium that there would be a subsequent vote for the runoff election. Although this option would be costly we feel that it, or something similar, would be the most appropriate procedure. Delegates should be granted their rightful vote in this election. This could also be accomplished by allowing each County or Legislative District Chair to collect ballots from their own delegates. Since the Counties or Legislative Districts are smaller in size, they would be easier to manage and the Chairs would be able to keep track of the ballots to prevent voting fraud.
In the future, we hope that the convention will allow for all business to be conducted in a timely manner. Please consider the following suggestions:
– start the convention an hour later to allow those outside of Phoenix more time to arrive
– conduct the business and voting portion of the meeting first, scheduling speakers afterwards
– provide training for persons selected to administer and guide the voting process by County/LD
– assign two people to gather ballots and to ensure that the ballot belongs to the person submitting it
– conduct public logic and accuracy testing of voting equipment
The intent of this communication is to work together to build a stronger, more positive Party. We hope that you find this letter and recommendations informative and constructive.
The Coconino County Republican Committee
Chairman, Diana Arendt