Yes Virginia, there is a way to save the Orange County Republican Party. Jim Brulte, recently spoke at the Orange County Central Committee meeting. There was a lot of “revitalize the base” talk. There was a lot about mentoring in new folks into leadership positions. There certainly was lots of talk! We love Jim, he is smart guy that knows a bunch about California and National Republican Politics. The reality however is, Jim cannot do what needs to be done all by himself. One his main talking points was about the realities of the demographic changes to both Orange County and to California itself. What that means? NEORWG’s…which stands for Not Enough Old Rich White Guys! You could also use NEO-WIGS if you like that!
Since the Census, Districts have changed but Gerrymandering is still in evidence. Several Republican electeds did have to step aside however and suddenly after the National election in November of 2012…..the harsh realities started to raise their heads. Hispanic and Asian Voters are now in the majority. Old Republican White Folks are dying off, giving up and in some cases – simply changing party. Why? Well, it starts like this: OC Republican Congress people are no different than the rest of the National RNC. They thought they could confuse folks by mixing the National Debt with the Annual Deficit for Budgets and of course the incredible Trade Deficit. They thought they could sell, cutting Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid payments for old folks without them noticing. The idea was to demonize “Entitlements”. The idea was to blame Democrats for “Entitlements”, as if Republicans had nothing to do with any of that stuff. Well, fellas and gals it is pretty hard to tell a bunch of old folks that you will be reaching into their pockets and taking their monthly paid in and soon received Social Security or Medicare….it is purely a hard sell.
Brulte emphasized the Demographic divide. As if it was the fault of Hispanics, Asians and Blacks that had simply moved into the OC neighborhood and that suddenly “now had the votes”. The reality of course is far different. The Asians have been here since the ’70s and the Hispanics have either been here the entire history of California or over the entire history since the Amnesty in the 80’s. As Ronald Reagan said: “I didn’t leave the Democratic party…it left me!” Well, that goes double for Hispanics, Asians and Blacks in the OC Republican party – certainly since Tom Fuentes retired….that is for sure. Hey, we are not beating up Scott Baugh or anyone else in the OC Republican leadership. They just haven’t put a bunch of energy into recruiting more Asian, Hispanic and Black candidates that could represent their constituencies. A colorful face for the local Party is refreshing………perhaps, a platform with ethical concerns, ethnic references and a more hopeful message of jobs and better economic conditions might be even better.
The Republican Party of Orange County needs to get more than a divergent candidate mix. They need a strong localized platform that works for a broad constituent base. After President Obama unleashed his Inaugural Address and mentioned the LGBT community, there is little doubt that Gay Rights should finally find their way onto the Republican platform. The second issue of great merit for a diverse constituency is Abortion. It really wasn’t until after the Reagan Administration that the Republican Party took an unflappable approach to Abortion. Pro-Life or Die in spite of conditions such as the life or health of the mother, incest, rape or other traumatic event….such as a car accident, fire or flood. The times have changed and unless we return to the days of Dwight Eisenhower and just mention in passing that Abortion should be the last resort – again….the OC Republican Party will be out of touch.
Equal pay for women, minorities, seniors and the disabled – is probably another issue that the Republican Party of Orange County should stand up to….in one way or the other. What about their position on Social Security? Should recipients get a Cost of Living Increase each year – or not. What about Medicare and care for Veterans? Should they receive a Cost of Living Increase each year or not? What about the National Debt….now at $16.5 Trillion dollars? Should we attempt to pay this down? What about Tax Reform? Should a family of four making $85 thousand dollars a year pay 25% and millionaires pay 14%?. Let the party stand up and be counted. Does the Republican Party of Orange County want to take away the Mortgage deduction for a Prime Residence? Take away the College deductions for sending their kids to Universities?
Let’s just say, there needs to be a clarity to the OC Republican Platform that can be discussed opening and willingly and often. We need 33% of members of the Central Committee to be Hispanic. We need 32% to be Asian. We need 2% to be Black and we need 32% to be White – and not necessarily old. Making the party look like those that they represent will make a huge difference. Listening to those locally, like the Hispanic 100. Finding the groups in Villa Park, Garden Grove, Tustin that do fully represent the Asian Community- will go a long way to change the face of the party. Without these fundamental changes there is very little chance that Republicans will be elected against Democrats in the elections to come.
We don’t mention the Tea Party…..for a reason. The Tea Party members take great pride in not announcing their platforms. They like to take it on the fly. All Tea Party members are not alike. They remind us a bunch of the United We Stand people, after Ross Perot left. The Tea Party needs to become all inclusive and all broadly ethnic. Then they can make their points and make their stands. Our question of course is; What is the Tea Party position of Gun Control? The Republican Party of Orange County needs to be forthcoming on that issue as well. Be it the 1st, 2nd or 4th Amendments…..strong positions on these issues is paramount to a winning strategy. Getting OC Republican candidates for office to become ethnically inclusive is first and foremost.
Change is hard and Saving the Orange County Republican Party may just take more than we can think of … maybe “a miracle”!
Some questions to ask: “How does the National Debt affect me?”
“How will the Trillion Dollar Trade Deficit affect Americans?”
“How will the Annual National Budget Deficit affect me directly?”
“Why do law abiding citizens have to have their gun rights abrogated – because of crazy folks?”
Good Luck Orange County Republicans – get the answers!