Will Charlie Baker Chris Christie the Mass GOP?

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Will Charlie Baker Chris Christie the Mass GOP?

For all the talk about how the base needs to coop­er­ate with the estab­lish­ment more, it’s worth remem­ber­ing that the base almost always does its part on Elec­tion Day. It’s the estab­lish­ment that is less reli­able in return­ing the favor.

Jonah Gold­berg

Ear­lier this year just before the NH pri­mary the pop­u­lar Mass­a­chu­setts Gov­er­nor Char­lie Baker endorsed Chris Christie as his can­di­date for pres­i­dent. Despite an active robust cam­paign Christie went on to be deci­sively beaten in NH and dropped out of the race two days later.

Some won­der why Chris Christie did so poorly, too crowded a field, not enough money but one of the things that I think cost him was his record.

No not his record as Gov­er­nor, given the sit­u­a­tion in his state he’s actu­ally done pretty well, no I mean his record as head of the NJ GOP

Since Christie is so pop­u­lar and won re-​election so deci­sively one would nat­u­rally expect he brought suc­cess for the party with him. After all , if he is the poster boy for the GOP nation­ally he would be the model to elect party mem­bers fol­low­ing his lead all over the state right?

Despite Christie’s 60 per­cent show­ing on Tues­day, Repub­li­cans didn’t make up any ground in the state Senate.

In an elec­tion where he got 60% of the vote and faced token oppo­si­tion he had absolutely no coat­tails in his state, and fur­ther­more at the same time he refused to cam­paign for Ken Cuc­cinelli who was in a close tough race that he would barely lose to Clin­ton con­fi­dant Terry McAuliffe.

I sus­pect more than a few Tea Party mem­bers took note.

And that brings us to Char­lie Baker.

Char­lie Baker has been a pretty good gov­er­nor his han­dling of the big snow­storm last year, showed what com­pe­tent lead­er­ship can do. His no drama admin­is­tra­tion has been a wel­come con­trast to Deval Patrick and his approval rat­ings reflect that con­trast. It’s no won­der that the National Jour­nal story about him was titled The Most Pop­u­lar Politi­cian in Amer­ica.

Given the state of the GOP in Mass­a­chu­setts and with 11% reg­is­tra­tion and a state house with veto proof majori­ties in both cham­bers for democ­rats (house 12535 Sen­ate 346) one would think Char­lie Baker might use some of that polit­i­cal cap­i­tal to build the party, recruit­ing GOP can­di­dates across the state to con­test these races and per­haps nar­row those demo­c­ra­tic super­ma­jori­ties that he is facing.

And indeed the Gov­er­nor is in fact get­ting involved in local races…in order to defeat con­ser­v­a­tive republicans

Strongly con­ser­v­a­tive fac­tions of the Mass­a­chu­setts Repub­li­can Party, a con­stituency that Char­lie Baker courted in his 2014 guber­na­to­r­ial race, are now the tar­get of the gov­er­nor and his polit­i­cal team in their cam­paign to take firmer con­trol of a sharply divided state GOP.

Baker, in an unprece­dented foray into an intra­party squab­ble, is using the March 1 bal­lot­ing for the GOP’s gov­ern­ing state com­mit­tee to mus­cle the con­ser­v­a­tives out of any sig­nif­i­cant influ­ence and to replace them with mod­er­ate Republicans.

And some of the peo­ple he is oppos­ing are folks that he can directly link his nar­row elec­toral vic­tory to

For exam­ple, Baker and Polito endorsed 29-​year-​old Neil St. Clair, a new­comer to the party, for a com­mit­tee seat now held by con­ser­v­a­tive activist Steven W. Ayl­ward of Watertown.

Ayl­ward, who did not want to com­ment, was a leader in the 2014 cam­paign to repeal auto­matic increases to the state gas tax, a bat­tle that brought a swath of anti­tax, pro-​Baker vot­ers to the polls. Baker even cred­ited Ayl­ward with play­ing a key part in his razor-​thin vic­tory over Demo­c­rat Martha Coakley.

Adding to the insult is that Baker’s choice, St. Clair, recently moved to Boston’s Back Bay from New York, where in June 2011 he had reg­is­tered as a Demo­c­rat. St. Clair, who reg­is­tered as a Repub­li­can last fall, said he is drawn to Baker’s mod­er­ate Repub­li­can brand and has offered to help. He is vague about how the Baker endorse­ment came about.

So Char­lie Baker is sup­port­ing a newly con­verted Demo­c­rat for state com­mit­tee vs a GOP activist who is directly respon­si­ble for the defeat of the hated indexed gas tax.

No won­der the Globe endorsed him last time.

I’ve received one of those Baker mail­ers, they are sup­port­ing two peo­ple who I’ve never heard of over the local activists who have been work­ing like dogs to advance the GOP in the area and stood by the party and defended it when con­ser­v­a­tives were talk­ing about stay­ing home.

I can’t think of any­thing that would enrage the activists who have spent the last six years giv­ing their time, effort and money to sup­port the party than this effort to push them out of the way. If these sug­gested com­mit­tee peo­ple are such excel­lent choices why not instead use the strength of the party to run them for state rep and state sen­ate. After all if 19 of those 52 peo­ple man­aged to win seats cur­rently held by Democ­rats in the house then the party would be able to sus­tain a Baker veto.

Fur­ther­more let’s say Baker plans to recruit local can­di­dates once he purges the grass­roots activists from the party. Once that hap­pens who is going to do the grunt work that said activists did? After all Jeb Bush has already demon­strated that big money can’t com­pete with com­mit­ted volunteers.

On that sub­ject we have a spe­cial elec­tion com­ing up in my dis­trict where Repub­li­can city coun­cilor Dean Tran is fac­ing Demo­c­rat Coun­sler Steven Hay for the seat vacated by Demo­c­rat Steve DiNa­tale. At the state party site Kris­ten Hughes had this to say:

“Dean Tran has been a con­sis­tent and hard-​working advo­cate for Fitch­burg tax­pay­ers for years, and will be a trusted leader for the 3rd Worces­ter on Bea­con Hill. The Mass­GOP is ready to work with Dean as our nom­i­nee in this elec­tion, to send Gov­er­nor Baker a strong part­ner from Fitch­burg and Lunenburg.”

You might think that a pop­u­lar sit­ting GOP gov­er­nor might bother to say a good word Mr. Tran yet the mailer which talks about the March 1st elec­tion doesn’t say a word about the spe­cial elec­tion tak­ing place that day or the can­di­dacy of Con­sular Tran.

Back in 2013 I left the GOP after cov­er­ing the party con­ven­tion and see­ing the ahem inter­est­ing tac­tics used by the party estab­lish­ment to defeat a poten­tial Tea Party chair­man I left the GOP very pub­licly say­ing

If the party wants me and peo­ple like me they’ll have to earn me. When the GOP can con­vince me that they are seri­ous about grow­ing the party, when they con­vince me they are seri­ous about treat­ing the tea party et/​al as val­ued mem­bers as opposed to a source of temp labor and occa­sional funds. I’ll be happy to return to the Repub­li­can Party in as pub­lic a fash­ion as I’ve just left it.

Appar­ently they are happy to keep peo­ple like me out and maybe throw a few other under the bus. I guess Neil McCabe was right:

after he is elected, con­ser­v­a­tives may think they won some­thing. But, rather with Baker and his col­lab­o­ra­tor Repub­li­cans, it means all is lost.

And peo­ple in the GOP estab­lish­ment won­der why Ted Cruz and Don­ald Trump are win­ning pri­maries and their can­di­dates are not.

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For all the talk about how the base needs to cooperate with the establishment more, it’s worth remembering that the base almost always does its part on Election Day. It’s the establishment that is less reliable in returning the favor.

Jonah Goldberg

Earlier this year just before the NH primary the popular Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker endorsed Chris Christie as his candidate for president. Despite an active robust campaign Christie went on to be decisively beaten in NH and dropped out of the race two days later.

Some wonder why Chris Christie did so poorly, too crowded a field, not enough money but one of the things that I think cost him was his record.

No not his record as Governor, given the situation in his state he’s actually done pretty well, no I mean his record as head of the NJ GOP

Since Christie is so popular and won re-election so decisively one would naturally expect he brought success for the party with him. After all , if he is the poster boy for the GOP nationally he would be the model to elect party members following his lead all over the state right?

Despite Christie’s 60 percent showing on Tuesday, Republicans didn’t make up any ground in the state Senate.

In an election where he got 60% of the vote and faced token opposition he had absolutely no coattails in his state, and furthermore at the same time he refused to campaign for Ken Cuccinelli who was in a close tough race that he would barely lose to Clinton confidant Terry McAuliffe.

I suspect more than a few Tea Party members took note.

And that brings us to Charlie Baker.

Charlie Baker has been a pretty good governor his handling of the big snowstorm last year, showed what competent leadership can do.  His no drama administration has been a welcome contrast to Deval Patrick and his approval ratings reflect that contrast.  It’s no wonder that the National Journal story about him was titled The Most Popular Politician in America.

Given the state of the GOP in Massachusetts and with 11% registration and a state house with veto proof majorities in both chambers for democrats (house 125-35 Senate 34-6) one would think Charlie Baker might use some of that political capital to build the party, recruiting GOP candidates across the state to contest these races and perhaps narrow those democratic supermajorities that he is facing.

And indeed the Governor is in fact getting involved in local races…in order to defeat conservative republicans

Strongly conservative factions of the Massachusetts Republican Party, a constituency that Charlie Baker courted in his 2014 gubernatorial race, are now the target of the governor and his political team in their campaign to take firmer control of a sharply divided state GOP.

Baker, in an unprecedented foray into an intraparty squabble, is using the March 1 balloting for the GOP’s governing state committee to muscle the conservatives out of any significant influence and to replace them with moderate Republicans.

And some of the people he is opposing are folks that he can directly link his narrow electoral victory to

For example, Baker and Polito endorsed 29-year-old Neil St. Clair, a newcomer to the party, for a committee seat now held by conservative activist Steven W. Aylward of Watertown.

Aylward, who did not want to comment, was a leader in the 2014 campaign to repeal automatic increases to the state gas tax, a battle that brought a swath of antitax, pro-Baker voters to the polls. Baker even credited Aylward with playing a key part in his razor-thin victory over Democrat Martha Coakley.

Adding to the insult is that Baker’s choice, St. Clair, recently moved to Boston’s Back Bay from New York, where in June 2011 he had registered as a Democrat. St. Clair, who registered as a Republican last fall, said he is drawn to Baker’s moderate Republican brand and has offered to help. He is vague about how the Baker endorsement came about.

So Charlie Baker is supporting a newly converted Democrat for state committee vs a GOP activist who is directly responsible for the defeat of the hated indexed gas tax.

No wonder the Globe endorsed him last time.

I’ve received one of those Baker mailers, they are supporting two people who I’ve never heard of over the local activists who have been working like dogs to advance the GOP in the area and stood by the party and defended it when conservatives were talking about staying home.

 

I can’t think of anything that would enrage the activists who have spent the last six years giving their time, effort and money to support the party than this effort to push them out of the way.  If these suggested committee people are such excellent choices why not instead use the strength of the party to run them for state rep and state senate.  After all if 19 of those 52 people managed to win seats currently held by Democrats in the house then the party would be able to sustain a Baker veto.

Furthermore let’s say Baker plans to recruit local candidates once he purges the grassroots activists from the party.  Once that happens who is going to do the grunt work that said activists did?  After all Jeb Bush has already demonstrated that big money can’t compete with committed volunteers.

On that subject we have a special election coming up in my district where Republican city councilor Dean Tran is facing Democrat Counsler Steven Hay for the seat vacated by Democrat Steve DiNatale.  At the state party site Kristen Hughes had this to say:

“Dean Tran has been a consistent and hard-working advocate for Fitchburg taxpayers for years, and will be a trusted leader for the 3rd Worcester on Beacon Hill. The MassGOP is ready to work with Dean as our nominee in this election, to send Governor Baker a strong partner from Fitchburg and Lunenburg.”

You might think that a popular sitting GOP governor might bother to say a good word Mr. Tran yet the mailer which talks about the March 1st election doesn’t say a word about the special election taking place that day or the candidacy of Consular Tran.

Back in 2013 I left the GOP after covering the party convention and seeing the ahem interesting tactics used by the party establishment to defeat a potential Tea Party chairman I left the GOP very publicly saying

If the party wants me and people like me they’ll have to earn me. When the GOP can convince me that they are serious about growing the party, when they convince me they are serious about treating the tea party et/al as valued members as opposed to a source of temp labor and occasional funds. I’ll be happy to return to the Republican Party in as public a fashion as I’ve just left it.

Apparently they are happy to keep people like me out and maybe throw a few other under the bus.  I guess Neil McCabe was right:

after he is elected, conservatives may think they won something. But, rather with Baker and his collaborator Republicans, it means all is lost.

And people in the GOP establishment wonder why Ted Cruz and Donald Trump are winning primaries and their candidates are not.

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I was laid off this week from my 3rd shift job so my plan to use said job to pay the mortgage while using the site to get out of debt in a couple of years is out the window unless we suddenly get 125 subscribers at $10 a month When I say I could use a hand right now I’m not kidding.

Since we all know the rosey description of the Obama economy by the MSM is BS to those who have kicked in (particularly subscribers), thanks much.

If however you have not & are both able and inclined I’d really appreciate it if you’d help us either close January strong or start February stronger by hitting DaTipJar.




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