Sunday, March 22, 2015

Jack Richardson's on the KY Caucus

Jack Richardson, who served for many years as the Jefferson County GOP Chair, agreed to provide a copy of the remarks he delivered the the Kentucky Republican Executive Committee on March 7, 2015, when it voted to hold a caucus in stead of a a primary.

Jack makes some important points that are relevant for the particular circumstances in 2016 due to Sen. Paul's presidential run. But as Jack notes, this is not just a one-time issue.  Unless and until Kentucky moves its primary up, to give us a real say in the presidential primaries, I think we should stick with a caucus in presidential election years.

Jack attended the planning meeting for the caucus this yesterday and reports that those charged with making it a reality are enthusiastic and committed to making this work.

Here are excerpts from Jack's remarks:

We have two issues here today and I want to address the first one and that is Kentucky’s Republican Party’s paralysis by analysis problem.  We desperately need change but we secure our second place status in a state that should have been Red long ago because of a status quo that is protected by either lethargy or over analysis, and sometimes it’s hard to tell the difference between the two. We need not look far for examples.  Last November Republicans had an historical electoral result across the nation. The Democrats had only two bright spots, Iowa and the Kentucky house. No change there. 
We have talked for decades about Kentucky’s irrelevance in the Presidential primaries. It’s amazing to me that anyone even bothers to turn out and vote because by the time Kentucky’s primary gets here the decision is essentially a fait au complet.  Oh, but we talk, and we talk, and talk and talk. But, God forbid that anyone actually propose to do anything about it. Never fear though, there is always that old faithful security blanket of talk, talk, talk.  If anything threatens to change the status quo, we just talk it or analyze it to death and we keep cozy in our old sameness. 
As usual, for things to change, it takes someone, a catalyst to bring about that change, but unfortunately, in Kentucky, that lone southern state that stubbornly refuses to turn red, they will be faced by that same affliction of paralysis by analysis. 
We need to become relevant and particularly so in the Presidential Primary and the caucus will do that.  We need to become a state worthy of its two world leaders, Sen. McConnell and Sen. Paul.  We as a party need to be a help to these two world leaders, not a hindrance. 
That brings me to my second point. The caucus is right and good for Kentucky, Kentucky Republicans and the Kentucky Republican party. Contrary to one remark I heard about this being just about Sen. Paul, this is not just about Sen. Rand Paul. But, arguendo, if so, so what?
I was Chairman of the Jefferson County Republican party for nearly 10 years. One of the first things I told my membership was:  know your job description.  I said, none of you are a US Senator and not likely to be. We are here to help not hinder.  The same goes for this committee. 99.9 % chance that no one here will ever be a US Senator. We are committee members. We are the Indians, not the chiefs. 
Six years ago there was a man, a little known doctor from Bowling Green, Kentucky.  Today that man, is listed in Time Magazine, is one of the top 100 most influential people in the world. He didn’t get there by committee. He has extra ordinary talents and political instincts. We didn’t give him permission to do what he has done. He didn’t need our permission to be great, he just was.  He didn’t talk and talk and talk about it………………he just did it. He’s in the top 100, we are not. We need to be worthy of our two world leaders.  
Sen. Rand Paul has earned the right to be the captain of the ship, or the chief as it may be. Just as Mitch has earned that right and deserved our cooperation last year, he got it.  Now he’s the leader of the US Senate. What a marvelous honor that is for our state. What great recognition that brings to Kentucky. 
Sen. Rand Paul is known from coast to coast and seen on all the nightly news shows. He has brought great distinction to our state.  Both of our US Senators are world class, and national leaders.  What other states can boast of such.  
This Caucus issue is not about Rand, but if so, so what?  Who cares? For years when Mitch needed or wanted something he got it and deserved it and we are all the better for it.  Now it’s Rand’s turn and he has done this state proud. And, this country desperately needs the kind of leadership he will provide.  I see our job description as a committee of being helpers, not hinderers. Let’s show the rest of the country the faith and confidence we have in our great senator. Let’s begin the needed change for the Republican Party of Kentucky by making Kentucky relevant in the Presidential nominee selection process. 
Sen. Paul has extraordinary political instincts and has parlayed them into being in the top 100 of the world’s most influential people in just six years.  He has earned the right to our help and I for one am not going to supplant my judgment for his proven success and political instincts. 
As I told Mr. Youngman at the Lexington Herald in a recent interview, you can take any idea and pick it to death. It’s easy to snipe. This is not the time or the place to do that. All of our leaders have endorsed this caucus measure.
It’s time to break from the past. It’s time to make a change. It’s time to stop talking and start doing.It’s time to stop saying can’t and start saying let’s do it.It’s time to stop navel gazing and wringing our hands and to start looking forward with courage, faith, boldness and action. It’s time to Nike up and “Just do it.”It’s time to be united lest we fall.It’s time to measure up to the greatness of our two US Senators.It’s time to support our Sen. Paul and to support the caucus initiative.Its time – now let’s just do this! 

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