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Friday, February 20, 2015

WMP's Guide To The MIGOP Convention

 
MIGOP Chair Bobby Schostak


 By Brandon Hall   
(Email him at WestMiPolitics@Gmail.com)


Thanks for giving this a look! It's not perfect, but hopefully you find some of it interesting. Looking forward to any feedback (westmipolitics@gmail.com) to improve things like this is the future, though some are quite obvious.

Anyway, hopefully you find something in here informative. Rep. John Moolenaar will be Convention Chairman. I thought Kyle Brethauer's Facebook post last night was fitting:

"It's been a long road, and a lot of people are putting in a tremendous effort to express their conservative values. I know I am just a sidelined delegate with little influence, but I wanted to share this with my friends.
This weekend, as like last weekend with the Democrats, the Republican party is going to convention. I don't know how the liberals conduct themselves, but I can say their is an exceptional fight within OUR party over the future. AND IT SHOULD BE!

There are a lot of fine candidates running. I can't speak for all the positions, but I can say the debate has been rigorous and vigorous. It is more than egos on the line, as we enter into the 2016 election year.
As we enter into the final days, I hope all candidates seek guidance from the Almighty, and pray that their actions be His instrument for the benefit of our country. We are entering a period of troubled times. We need more than strong leadership. Now more than ever prayer should be the staple of our diet, and divine wisdom our nourishment.

I pray for safe passage for all our convention delegates, and wish everyone the best. I want you all to know that tonight I pray for God's strength and wisdom.
Good luck, and may peace find you."

Tentative Agenda

Friday, February 20

5:00 pm: Delegate & Alternate Registration opens in the Lansing Center
7:00 pm: Congressional District Caucuses (Locations TBD)

Saturday, February 21

7:00 am: Registration opens in the Lansing Center
NOTE: Registration will be open for those delegates, alternates, and guests who did NOT obtain a credential on Friday evening. If you have your credential from Friday night, you  DO NOT need a new credential for Saturday. If you lose your credential, please visit the Help Desk.
NOTE: To avoid longer lines on the day of State Convention, you are strongly encouraged to pick up your credentials on Friday evening.
9:00 am: State Convention called to order -  Exhibit Hall
Items of business include receiving reports of the election in the 14 congressional district caucuses of:
  • 14 Congressional District Chairs (1 per congressional district) and the other officers
  • 98 members of the Michigan Republican Party (one of whom shall be the Congressional District Chair) (7 per congressional district)
  • 14 Convention Vice Chairs (1 per congressional district)
  • 14 Assistant Secretaries (1 per congressional district)
and the election of:
  • One (1) State Chair
  • One (1) Co-Chair
  • One (1) Coalitions Vice-Chair
  • One (1) Outreach Vice-Chair
  • One (1) Grassroots Vice-Chair
  • One (1) Ethnic Vice-Chair
  • One (1) Administrative Vice-Chair
  • One (1) Youth Vice-Chair
and transacting other such business as may properly come before the State Convention. 

MIGOP Chair Race: The Courser/Gamrat Double Standard



By Brandon Hall   
(Email him at WestMiPolitics@Gmail.com)
 


Much has been said about the race for Michigan Republican Party Chair-it's about to be in the delegates hands...

Last night, many were stunned by State Representatives Todd Courser and Cindy Gamrat endorsing Ronna Romney McDaniel for Chair. They have subsequently been blasted on Facebook by some of their most passionate supporters.

Gamrat's son Joey took to Facebook to defend Courser and Gamrat, writing:

"So because somebody endorses the candidate "you" feel Is not the "conservative" in the race... It means they were paid off?? Really? How does one get to decide the other is wrong for their endorsement?
Instead of jumping to the conclusion "they must have been bought out, that's the only reason they would've endorsed that person" maybe you should look deeper. What if there is something you don't know about the other candidates?

If we are jumping to conclusion, does that mean everyone who endorsed Norm were "bought out" and those that supported Kim were bought out by her as well? Come on people. Really?
People see candidates, humans, actions, and statements all differently. Your not telling me that the way you view them is the "only" way to view them are you?"

Under the latest "litmus test," Courser and Gamrat are now sellouts, fake Conservatives no longer friends to liberty.

Just a few hours ago, the "litmus test" was whether one supported a taxpayer funded 2016 GOP Presidential primary. Even Courser used the phrase to describe the vote. The same people who hours before lauded that claim-some of those folks threw Courser under the bus without batting an eye, just for the Romney endorsement.

Just a few days before, the litmus test was Dave Agema support. If it's not primaries, Agema, or the Chair race, it's always something. Every week or month, something comes up and if one doesn't share the same views, you are a "fake conservative." I am so damn sick of it.

I remember though, not too long ago, a race with a strong establishment Chair candidate running against a passionate grassroots champion. The "establishment" candidate was Bobby Schostak, the grassroots champ? Courser. Wes Nakagiri endorsed the establishment...How quickly, though, was Nakagiri forgiven when he later announced he would run against Calley?

The same people who attack Courser and Gamrat supported Nakagiri. I am sure they'll forgive Courser and Gamrat soon enough. Especially when they are reminded of some of Lansing's more statist figures...

The chair race has been dramatic this week-sometimes it's loked a lot like a Jerry Springer episode. We even saw shades of "Law and Order" when allegations over extortion came out.

With a win tomorrow, Ronna Romney will not just take over the Michigan Republican Party, she'll take the torch from Uncle Mitt. Ronna's takeover of the Romney Empire starts this weekend. Mitt's done-she's the future.

Kim Shmina and Norm Hughes have other plans-they hope to score an upset. Best of luck to all....

Who Is In Current MIGOP Positions?

Party Leadership, per MIGOP.Org:





Robert Schostak, Chairman

In the 2014 election cycle, Chairman Schostak raised more than $30 million dollars to support Republican candidates across Michigan. The MIGOP recruited volunteers earlier than ever and developed a record setting ground game focused on peer-to-peer, neighbor-to-neighbor contact. Chairman Schostak played a critical role in re-electing Governor Snyder, Secretary of State Johnson, and Attorney General Schuette. Schostak’s vision helped achieve historic Republican majorities in the State Senate and State House, and helped maintain our majority on the Michigan Supreme Court.
Schostak was re-elected in February 2013 as the Chairman of the party following a 2012 election cycle where he helped raise more than $26 million for our GOP candidates, and protected our majority in the State House.
In 2011, Bobby Schostak was elected Party Chairman for the Michigan Republican Party. Under Schostak’s direction, the MIGOP has proactively worked with local communities, grassroots organizations and new and existing coalitions to gather support throughout the state. They have invested heavily in new campaign technologies, including the MI Team Dashboard, a more user-friendly migop.org and others.
In 2009, he was appointed the Finance Chairman of the Michigan Republican Party where he was responsible for raising $28 million with then Chairman Ron Weiser. This war chest led the way to unprecedented Republican victories. Results included Republicans holding the Governor’s Office, Secretary of State, and Attorney General, a majority in the State House, a super majority in the State Senate, and a conservative majority on the Michigan Supreme Court.
Schostak increased his activity in politics in 2008 due to major concerns on the direction of our state and country, following years of assisting political campaigns for John Engler, Spencer Abraham, Dick DeVos, John McCain, Mitt Romney, numerous State House and State Senate races as well as numerous municipal races.
Prior to going full-time into Michigan politics, Schostak served as Chief Operating Officer and Chief Executive Officer of the family’s real estate company located in Livonia, Michigan.
He and Nancy, his wife of 37 years, have three adult married children and three grandchildren.

Sharon Wise, Co-Chair

Helping Republican candidates win for more than 25 years, Sharon Wise is a strong voice for local party activists. Currently the Director of Community Relations for Congressman Dave Camp (MI-04) she also serves on the Board of Directors for the National Charter School Institute and is a member of the Traverse Area Chamber of Commerce. She is a former member of the Traverse City Board of Directors.
In addition to having served as the Co-Chairman for the state party with Chairman Ron Weiser, Sharon served as Michigan’s Republican National Committeewoman for two terms. Traveling throughout the state, she worked with regional party leaders to build our Party at the local level.
Wise worked as campaign manager for a state representative, a local county (Shiawassee) Party chairman, congressional district chairman and campaign chairman for Congressman Camp. Whenever there was a job to do, Sharon did it.
Her devotion to public service extends beyond GOP political campaigns and organizations. Sharon was elected to the Michigan State Board of Education in 1994. She has continued her commitment to reforming and improving Michigan’s education serving as VP of the National Charter School Institute.
A graduate of Utah State University College of Business, Sharon lives in Traverse City and is the proud mother of two children and one grandchild.

Dave Agema, National Committeeman

David J. Agema was elected as the National Committeeman from Michigan in May 2012. He has served as a State Representative in the 74th District of Michigan from 2007 until the end of 2012. Representative Agema was the Chairman of the Transportation, Department of Health and Human Services, and Appropriations Committees and is a former American Airlines Captain. Agema received a B.A. from Calvin College, and a Business Management degree from Central Michigan University. During his time in the United States Air Force, he participated in Officer Training School, Pilot Training, Fighter Pilot Training, Squadron Officers School, and Command and Staff School. He is the President of Sabath House Ministries, a faith-based literacy organization, and a member of the NRA, and the Allied Pilots Association. Agema currently resides in Grandville, MI with his wife Barbara and has three children, Jon, Joy Herrema and Anna Graybill.

Ronna Romney McDaniel, National Committeewoman

Ronna Romney McDaniel was elected as the National Committee Member from Michigan in February of 2014. She has served as a Precinct Delegate, as a District Committee Executive Member and State Committeewoman in Michigan. She Chaired the Women for Mitt Coalition in Michigan in 2012, and served as National Delegate to the Tampa Convention representing Michigan’s 11th District. In 2013, she served as Co-Chair for the Mackinac Leadership Conference and was appointed by Governor Rick Snyder to serve on the Board of Marriage and Family Therapists. In her local community of Northville, Ronna has served on land planning and public safety committees and is actively involved in her local PTA. She received her B.A. in English from Brigham Young University. Ronna is married to Patrick McDaniel and has two children, Abigail and Nash.

Blake Elliott Edmonds, Youth Vice Chair

Blake Edmonds is a College Republican grassroots leader from St. Joseph, MI, that is in his fourth year at Aquinas College in Grand Rapids. Blake formerly served as First Vice Chairman of the Michigan Federation of College Republicans from March 2012 to April 2013. Blake is currently Youth Vice Chair of the Michigan Republican Party and Executive Director of the Aquinas College Republicans. Blake has a passion for being involved in the Republican party and greatly enjoys sharing it with other young people.

David Wolkinson, Administrative Vice Chair

David Wolkinson was born in Royal Oak, Michigan in 1980. He grew up in Oakland County where he graduated from Southfield-Lathrup in 1998. He then earned three degrees from Michigan (a BA and MA in Economics and a JD by the time he was 24). In pursuit of his lifelong interest in politics David was elected the Administrative Vice Chair of the Michigan Republican Party at the 2013 Republican State Convention. Prior to being elected Vice Chair, David served as the Policy Director on Rick Snyder’s 2010 campaign. David is an attorney in private practice. When not working or attending to political activities, he is an NBA enthusiast and Detroit Piston fanatic.

Kelly Mitchell, Outreach Vice Chair

Kelly Mitchell has lived in Michigan her entire life growing up in rural Thetford Township. Her activism in Republican advocacy began as a Young Republican. Having been a resident in Genesee and Kent Counties at different stages, she has been a delegate to county and state conventions over the years.
In 2012, Kelly was elected to the Electoral College as one of 16 statutory delegates to be seated in the Electoral College if the people of Michigan favored the Republican Candidate, Mitt Romney. She is a precinct delegate and former 3rd District Committee Member. No activism however, has been met with such interest, energy and success as that of being a grassroots activist. Kelly has served on presidential, gubernatorial, state and local campaigns when called upon.
In Grand Rapids, Kelly may be found volunteering at Art Prize, LaughFest, Mel Trotter Ministries, Heart of the Neighborhood and as a board member for Women’s Life local Chapter 888.
Kelly is married with one adult daughter and resides in Grand Rapids. She is employed as a Sales Executive for a Blueprint Tooling company. She will complete her BS in July 2013.

Linda Lee Tarver, Ethnic Vice Chair

Linda Lee Tarver is married to Clint and has two adult children, Jennifer and Terrance. Linda Lee is assistant to Michigan Secretary of State Ruth Johnson and holds a bachelor’s degree in business management and a master’s degree in industrial/organizational psychology. She is pursuing a doctorate of education in organizational leadership. Linda Lee has been involved in local and state party politics for many years. She serves as Ethnic Vice Chair of the Michigan Republican Party, former Chairwoman of the Ingham County Republican Party, member of the 8th Congressional District Executive committee, and advisory board member of The Frederick Douglass Society of Michigan. Linda Lee is involved with the Mid-Michigan Republican Women’s Club and is the vice chair and co-founder of the Alliance of Black Republicans. In 2008 and 2012, Linda Lee served as a National Delegate to the Republican National Convention and in 2009, Linda Lee was appointed by the state Senate Majority Leader to serve on the Lansing Promise Zone Authority Board. Aside from her political involvement, Linda Lee serves her community as a board member for the Old Newsboy Association and is a member and teacher at Mt. Zion All Nations Bible Church.

Victor Diaz, Coalitions Vice Chair


Victor Diaz has served our Country as a Marine, a stature he brings to every public engagement. This Marine has crossed all over our State speaking at Lincoln Day Dinners, County Party Meetings, TEA Party meetings and local Republican clubs, discussing door to door trainings, insights from poll challenging, precinct delegate empowerment and Hispanic outreach just to name a few topics. Power and energy are bywords that accompany Victor wherever he speaks with innovative approaches to growing the Republican Party. Victor’s message circles around a core belief that we are the party of growth, opportunity and prosperity. Wrapped into measurable objectives this belief system will lead us to victories in coming elections. Contact him and schedule a meeting, a dinner, or a training and let’s continue The Republican Party’s march to victory for Michigan and America!

MIGOP Delegates United In Support Of Wendy Day's Food Drive For Veterans

 

 By Brandon Hall   
(Email him at WestMiPolitics@Gmail.com)


Wendy Day, former Howell School Board member and Tea Party fave, has taken a race where she is unopposed for Grassroots Vice Chair and turned her campaign energy into a food drive at tonight's MIGOP Convention. She calls it the "MIGOP Convention Service Project." Delegates from across the party have joined her efforts.

Wendy took some time to talk to WMP about her candidacy.

>>>Please remember to bring food to donate TONIGHT, FRIDAY, to your Congressional District caucuses! The food will benefit homeless Veterans, and the district with the most donations will win a special treat Saturday morning.

Day:

"Across Michigan there are volunteers working hard to spread the message of liberty and personal sustainability. They put in countless hours knocking doors, talking to neighbors, attending meetings, and making phone calls. I want to make sure they are appreciated, empowered, and encouraged. 

I have been involved with the GOP since 2004. I helped organize the first Tea Party Rallies in Michigan and understand the frustration many feel with the lack of adherence to platform principles. By working with what some would consider "establishment" and "grassroots" 

I am uniquely qualified to, for the most part, work with them all. We can be a Party of Principle and win elections. I am a military wife and mom. Protecting freedom is dear to my heart. I use to be a liberal, pro-choice feminist. Then I learned about the founding of our Republic. I became a Christian. And I started paying taxes. That was enough to make me a conservative. Now I have a desire to tell our story and share the message that if conservative principles win, the world is a better place. I will be voting NO on the May tax increase. 

The role of Grassroots Vice Chair is to encourage, empower and appreciate the volunteers. It doesn't matter if you have been volunteering for 20-years or if you just got involved the last election cycle, we need to let our volunteers know how much they are valued. I plan to focus on finding out what volunteers need to be successful, helping them coordinate service projects to interact with their community and build relationships, and fight for them to have the resources they need to be successful. 

Questions?

"They can call me 517-652-5855. This is my personal cell phone and I am not going to change the number. I want them to feel free to call me. I am here to serve.""

Wendy Day


Sponsors of the food drive include:

Adi Sathi for Michigan GOP Coalitions Vice Chair
Amanda Fisher
Anne Mervenne
Carolyn Curtin- Oceola County GOP
Charles Pillivant
Cindy Koroch Duran
Representative Cindy A. Gamrat
David Wolkinson
Dennis Brewer
Gena Rinckey
Generation Michigan
Glenda McLellan
Greater West Bloomfield Republicans
Jan Cischke Peabody
Jessica K. Bickford-Adgie
Joe & Kathy Groff
Joey Gamrat
Kathleen Thorrez
Kelly Mitchell
Kimberly Shmina
Reprentative Lana Theis
Linda Lee Tarver
Matthew X. Hauser
Mike Banerian for Michigan GOP Youth Chair
Michigan Combat DynamiX
Congressman Mike Bishop
Mike Shirkey
Oakland County Campaign for Liberty
Oakland County Republicans
Rj Regan
Robert & Barb Schafer
Rochester Area Republican Club
Ronald Weiser
Ronna Romney McDaniel
Russell D Spencer
Scott Greenlee
Terri Lynn Land
Tom Shields
Washtenaw County Republican Party Executive Committee
Western Oakland Women's Club

Adi Sathi Seeks MIGOP Coalitions Vice-Chair Position

Adi Sathi speaks with the Mid Michigan Republican Women's group recently.



 By Brandon Hall   
(Email him at WestMiPolitics@Gmail.com)


WMP caught up with Adi Sathi, he is running to replace Victor Diaz as MIGOP Coalitions Vice-Chair. Sathi, who managed Satish Jashi's campaign for Wayne St. Trustee, is unopposed Saturday at the convention.

-Why are you running?
I am running because I believe in a life of service and the importance of giving back to a community. I believe that I can make a difference for the Michigan GOP in this role and took the opportunity to do so.

-Describe yourself. What experience do you have? What do you want delegates to know about you?
I am a legislative staffer for Representative Jon Bumstead in the Michigan House of Representatives. Before this job, I worked on various Republican campaigns and as of recently had the unique opportunity to manage the campaign for Satish Jasti for Wayne State Board of Governors. On this campaign, I had the opportunity to travel across the state and begin to build coalitions both inside and outside the Republican Party structure. I am also currently a member of the 11th Congressional District Republican Committee and an elected precinct delegate in Oakland County. I also have two degrees from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor and spent my time in college being extremely involved with student government as well as helped to co-found a chapter of Young Americans for Freedom on our campus.
 
-Position on may 5th road tax package and why?
I am against Proposal 1. The Michigan House of Representatives has presented an alternative bill that would not have raised taxes but would go towards fixing the roads. There are also a lot of questionable parts to the proposal that are not necessarily helping the roads either,.

-Views on how the migop should choose its 2016 nominee?
The MIGOP should allow the delegates and voters of the grass roots to be able to make their decision on 2016.

W­­hat is the role of your position?
My primary responsibility is to help the Michigan GOP build relationships with groups outside of the typical party structure. I am dedicated to working with the 11 recognized coalitions according to the state party website, and expanding on them in order to increase the outreach of the Republican message.­­

Why would you be the best choice? What are your ideas/plan for the future?
I believe that I am the best choice, for many reasons, but the number one reason is that there is NO OTHER CHOICE.
I want to focus on the three main aspects of my platform. First, I want to work to RE-ENERGIZE the grassroots in 2015 and keep them active so that we are already prepared entering 2016, instead of taking a break. I also want to EXPAND the number of coalitions that are currently recognized by the Michigan Republican Party. There are currently 11 recognized coalitions according to the state party website and I ask, why not more? Lastly, I want to DEVELOP leaders within various communities who are on board with the party platform and can help to spread the GOP message to their networks.

Anything you'd like delegates to know?
I would like to let the delegates know that I look forward to meeting as many of them as possible. I plan to work hard and continue to travel all across the state to talk to delegates and GOP activists about how we can make a difference come 2016.

Where can they go for more information?
To get more information about my race, please do not hesitate to email me at AdiRSathi@gmail.com or follow my campaign on any of the following social media outlets:
Twitter: @adisathi
Instagram: @adisathi 

Guzman, Wolkinson, And Arndt Seek MI GOP Administrative Vice Chair Spot


 


 By Brandon Hall   
(Email him at WestMiPolitics@Gmail.com)


>>>Check out an interview of Joseph Guzman below. He faces current Administrative Vice Chair David Wolkinson, a former Snyder and Bentivolio staffer, and Chris Arndt, a farmer who is  sometimes controversial in his Facebook posts.

 Arndt, when asked questions, referred to his website: http://arndt.gop/


David Wolkinson


We were not able to catch up with Wolkinson for an interview, but appreciate his willingness to do one. He did post this on Facebook:

"I am running for admin vice chair, a delegate asked me some questions and I shared my answers, a second delegate suggested I share it here. I would appreciate all of your votes and if anyone has any question call me 248 804 1961.
 

here are some questions that i was asked recently by another delegate

2. As Admin. Vice Chair where are the 3 ( not 1 or 2 but 3 ) areas you can HELP IMPROVE on that makes you want to run for this position?

1) According to the party bylaws are chief responsibility is running the conventions and other events put on by state party. Here are 3 priorities for me if I am re-elected. 1) Ensure that there is free access to the ballet at convention for all Republican candidates. Already in Washington there are insiders talking about parrying down the field to a select few candidates, I think that is a terrible idea. Bill Buckley used to say that he would trust the first 1000 names in the phone book to govern him than the Harvard faculty. I totally agree, I trust the grass roots and I don’t want any unelected bosses in Washington telling us who gets to be in debates and who we get to vote for. As admin vice chair I will endure that any Republican be he Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, or even Lindsey Graham has an equal playing field to contend in Michigan. 2) For years we have rotated between Oakland County, Lansing, Detroit and Grand Rapids for our conventions at state committee meetings. I have been talking with district and county chairs all around the state and this doesn’t make much sense to me. Why can’t other places host events? There are 800000 people in Macomb is it fair that we never do convention there? I don’t think so, I want to open the process up so that other cities like Kalamazoo, Battle Creek, Muskegeon and even places like Alpena can bid to host events. Of course we need to consider the logistics of any place that we select but we should open up these events to other places in the state to get more people involved. 3) Improve the efficiency of our conventions specifically the voting process. I have spoken to countless delegates that have told me about different issues that they have had. Because of a paper work snafu I was forced to wait on the sidelines to vote in the last convention and I was a sitting officer of state party. These problems stem for systemic operational issues at state party and I am confident that working with a new chair we will be able to address these issues promptly.

3. Part Time State Reps and Senators in Michigan YES or NO?
Yes, look at prop 1. We have a full time legislature and they didn’t with their full time calendar have enough time to select spending priorities so they asked us the voters to do their job for them. This is just another reflection of how little they do in spite of being “full time”

4. Rick Snyder is ( Complete this Sentence )
A nerd who is too timid to propose the bold reforms that are necessary to make Michigan great again. Absent right to work (which was forced on him) I can’t think of another truly bold reform that he has made.

5. Why are you the best candidate & or most qualified.
I’ve done this job in challenging circumstances for the last 2 years and I have learned a lot. The most common criticism of me that I have heard running for re-election is that I’m “not a team player.” I don’t think that is at all the case, I very much understand that we all need to work together to get our jobs done (which is electing Republicans). However, I have strong principles, they include limiting government and supporting individual freedom (both here and abroad.) That means when the Governor (even if he is a member of party) runs on expanding Medicaid or raising taxes I am going to oppose him. My integrity is not for sale and I will always chose my values over my party."

>>>>>>>As Joseph Guzman started speaking at the "4th District Round Up" event in early January, I was instantly impressed. Guzman, currently a Michigan State Professor, was speaking about his campaign for Michigan Republican Party Administrative Vice-Chair.
 
Guzman recently talked to WMP about the vision, values, and experience he hopes to bring to the position, and even talked about the May 5th road tax package.
 
What the heck does the Administrative Vice-Chair do?
"They are responsible for all conventions, conferences, candidate events and activities sponsored by the Michigan Republican Party, along with any other duties as directed by the Chair," Guzman said. "It should be a very active position-the way we conduct events is very important."
  Guzman has significant experience in Washington D.C.  
"I was the director of the Biometrics Management Office at the Department of Defense," Guzman said. "As a result of working in those circles, in the second term of the Bush administration, i went to the Air Force where I was Deputy Assistant Secretary of Manpower And Reserve Affairs," Guzman said.
 
When his boss left, Guzman went to the Navy.
 
"I worked in the Comptroller's Office and helped manage the finances of the Navy as a Deputy Assistant Secretary," Guzman said. "It was a $150 billion budget-a lot of detailed work. For the end of the Bush administration, I performed the duties of the Assistant Secretary of the Navy."
Guzman wants to engage local delegates more and also increase tech use at the State Party level.
 
"It is really important to implement micro-targeted surveys to fully accommodate event needs beforehand and afterwards, let's figure out how we can do it better next time," Guzman said. "Our events, while serious and important should also be fun-people should look forward to coming. I have a vision. We need to expand our base, appeal to young and newly registered voters, move forward with new technology, and start preparing for 2016," Guzman said.
 
Guzman opposes the May 5th Road Tax Package. "I don't support any new taxes," Guzman said. "We are so heavily taxed in this state. My biggest issue is that there is no sunset-they will spend this money forever. New roads and improved infrastructure is vital, but all these other things in the package shouldn't be in the mix, too."
 
Guzman, left, with Adi Sathi, Coalitions Chair candidate, right

Guzman would also like to "support 'Right To Work' contractors" if possible during MIGOP events.
"Right To Work is a tool we should utilize more," Guzman said.

Guzman believes "unity" between the grassroots and establishment can come through leadership.
 
"Unity is important but leadership is key," Guzman said. "As a party, we must set the example. We have a lot of great people out there-you can't muzzle someone. People feeling like they have a muzzle causes issues-let people say their bit and let's move on. We should have an open discussion among friends. People should be able to hear from candidates. And if you think someone is acting in bad faith or doing a whisper campaign or cheap attacks, or whatever the issue may be, don't support them. Se the tone, don't write a new rule."



State Rep. Lee Chatfield

Guzman believes State Party officials should stay neutral in primaries like that of Lee Chatfield vs. Frank Foster last year.

"Incumbency is good, but local districts and counties need to make these hard choices as to who will represent them," Guzman said. "The State Party needs to let the grassroots-the foundation of our party-decide issues in their communities. Anything else is probably inappropriate."

 Guzman supports the 2012 GOP Platform.

"The platform is our synthesized statement as a party of what the Constitution means and what our American values are," Guzman said. "We need to stick to it."

 Who is his favorite President?

"In my lifetime at least, Reagan," Guzman said. "He had an amazing sense of humor. He was so courageous and upbeat even in the face of great challenges."

Guzman is ready to hit the ground running.

"It's an office where I think I can make a significant contribution," Guzman said. "And it's imperative we prepare for 2016. This is a big election-the time to build the party is now. I believe I can do the things that are needed well. I would consider success in this role to be that I am able to help elect the candidates the delegates want."

Kelly Mitchell Seeks Another Term As MIGOP Outreach Chair

Kelly Mitchell Attends Gov. Snyders SOTS Speech in January


 By Brandon Hall   
(Email him at WestMiPolitics@Gmail.com)


Kelly Mitchell is running unopposed for another term as MI GOP Outreach Vice-Chair. She took some time to answer some questions about her position, the May 5th road package vote, and more.

Why are you running?

My most significant accomplishment is developing the will to give through volunteerism.

Eventually over the years it was the Republican Party volunteerism and practices that I believed would make a difference to improve the quality of life for all Americans. Today I stand tall as a disciple of volunteerism. I’m running to continue my journey in public service for the Michigan Republican Party and contribute of a government that is responsive, fair and just.

Describe yourself

As it relates to my political activism, I am reminded of the beginning of my volunteerism in the Republican Party and the party process and what I have come to believe to be my most significant contribution from which others may benefit. I’m convinced that there is a teachable and learning moment in all of this. Without a doubt, I am convinced and committed to the proposition that there is something noble and profound about volunteerism.

What experience do you have?

Political Experience:

 Outreach Vice Chair / Incumbent

 State Committee Member

 3rd District Executive Committee Member

 54th Precinct Delegate and Leader 2008-present / Kent County

 MRP Grassroots Leadership Award (2015)

 Women for Terri Land for Senate (2014)

 Women for Ruth Johnson (2014)

 Michigan Excellence in Public Service Series (MEEPS 2013)

 RNC National Committee Michigan Black Advisory Council (2013)

 Women for Mitt Coalition (2012)

 3rd District Electoral College (2012)

 Kent County Heart of the Neighborhood

 Former Legislative Intern (Former Rep. Marty Knollenberg)

 Teenage Young Republican

What do you want delegates to know about you?

I am not simply a follower moving in the direction of the wind. I make my decisions on what I see as fact and what I believe to be the truth. It has been the Republican Party’s platform that has enabled me, empowered me and redeemed me in times of overwhelming criticism and uncertainty from Democrats, Unions and People of Color.

Position on May 5th road tax package and why?

We need to find the revenues to support good roads and bridges to inspire and encourage new business development in Michigan. If we don’t do it now we will have to do it later. This is for the next generation who will use and benefit from these investments.

Views on how the migop should choose its 2016 nominee?

At a time when confidence in the voting process is low any change in the process could frustrate the voter.

What is the role of your position?

In short initiate and engage in all activities necessary to deliver the Republican message.

Why are you be the best choice?

I was fortunate to have begun my political activism as a teenager right here in this great state of Michigan! I care and I’m passionate about this state and our cause. I have the concrete experience and active experimentation it takes to lead as Outreach Vice Chair with confidence.

What are your ideas and plan for the future?

I have some exciting things planned for the next two years. I was able to initiate and engage in the first annual Republican Women’s Forum featuring Mia Love this past August at our state convention in Novi. The purpose of the Women’s Forum is to highlight and promote the importance of women in leadership positions within the Republican Party.

We have all heard the stories about how difficult it is to get women at the political table. Among other things, it is my plan when re-elected to improve on the effectiveness and sustainability of the forum for many years into the future by inviting similar exciting speakers to each succeeding annual even.

Anything you’d like delegates to know?

I believe it is important to support the platform because it is the platform that sustains the vision, beliefs and ideals that bond like-minded people together from generations to generations. Another important aspect of the platform is that it defines a course of action that challenges Democrats when the country is headed in the wrong direction.

Where can they go for more information?

Cell: 616-862-5526

Email:  kellym@migopoutreach.com
 

Linda Lee Tarver And Darwin Jiles Battle For MIGOP Ethnic Vice Chair Position

Linda Lee Tarver with supporters (Photo by Darlene Dowling Thompson)

 


By Brandon Hall   
(Email him at WestMiPolitics@Gmail.com)


Linda Lee Tarver faces Flint GOP activist Darwin Jiles in the race for MIGOP Ethnic Vice Chair. She currently holds that role.

Tarver took some time to answer a few questions and her responses are below. We were not able to speak with Jiles due to multiple reasons, but very much appreciate his willingness to talk! After Linda Lee Tarver's responses, please check out some info about what Darwin's supporters are saying.


Why are you running for Ethnic Vice Chair of the Michigan Republican Party?
I am running for re-election because there is more work to do and I have demonstrated and have documented proven results in attracting and retaining citizens of every race, color, creed, and nationality to the Republican Party. My goal is consistent with the goals of the Party and that is to get Republicans elected! The year 1988 was the last time Michigan presidential delegates were awarded to a Republican. We need to ensure Michigan turns red for 2016 and the Ethnic Vice Chair is vital to state, congressional, and presidential election. I am the only candidate who has the background, credentials, and character to actively engage, accompany, and credibly promote our Republican Presidential contender.

Describe yourself. What experience do you have? What do you want delegates to know about you?
Linda Lee Tarver serves as the Ethnic Vice-Chair of the Michigan Republican Party, former Chairwoman of the Ingham County Republican Party, former 8th District State Committeewoman, former Vice-Chair and Co-founder of the Alliance of Black Republicans, former Chaplain for and current member of the Mid-Michigan Republican Women’s Club, Advisor to the Christian Coalition of Michigan, and Advisor of the Frederick Douglass Society of Michigan.

In 2008 and 2012, Linda Lee represented Michigan as a National Delegate to the Republican National Convention. Ms. Tarver was selected to join Florida Lt. Governor, Jennifer Carroll and Congressman Alan West on the national Black Leadership Council for Mitt Romney and was a leader in the Women for Mitt Campaign. In February, 2015, the Michigan Republican Party honored Linda Lee with the Grassroots Leadership Award for exceptional service in community engagement and stellar results in contributing to the Michigan Comeback.

Linda Lee has campaigned tirelessly and vigorously on the Michigan Secretary of State campaigns. Most notably, Linda Lee’s efforts contributed to both Secretary Land (in 2006), and Secretary Johnson (in 2014) receiving the highest Republican votes in the state of Michigan.

As part of her duties as Ethnic Vice-Chair for the Michigan GOP, Ms. Tarver represented Michigan as a speaker and panel member for the 2011 Midwest Republican Leadership Conference in Minneapolis, MN. The panel discussion topic was “New Faces, New Voices” in the Republican Party. Linda Lee is also a member of the Republican Jewish Coalition and one of the coordinators of the Michigan National Day of Prayer, held each year at the Capital.

Under Linda Lee’s leadership, the Michigan Republican Party has built relationships and established coalitions for an African-American Republican Advisory Council, an Arab-American Republican Advisory Council, and a Hispanic-American Republican Advisory Council.

Linda Lee has participated in genuine outreach in all urban areas in Michigan promoting personhood, traditional marriage protection, rule of law, educational choice, right to life, religious liberty, and the Republican Platform. Linda Lee Tarver has been publicly seen and heard standing with other conservative leaders advocating Republican Principles.


Ms. Tarver is the only candidate who has traveled throughout the state of Michigan taking the Republican message and its platform to any and all groups. She has traveled from Traverse City to Adrian, from Manistique to Muskegon, from Petoskey to Benton Harbor, from Detroit to Holland and everywhere in between. Linda Lee is a conservative leader, a fierce grassroots activist, a strong voice for the Michigan Republican Party and a candidate for Ethnic Vice Chair who has read the entire 2012 Republican Platform.


Position on May 5th road tax package and why?

I inherently oppose tax increases and the May 5th proposal is no exception. While I have not had the opportunity to review the proposed package in great detail, using a long-term or infinite solution (tax increase) to pay for a temporary fix is not good policy in my opinion.


Why are you the best candidate?

I am tested, trusted, tried, and true! More importantly, I get results. I’ve created and developed relationships across the state. Vice Chairs are elected statewide and not in one region. I am the ONLY candidate with the record of success. My background and reputation as a tireless leader and Republican grassroots activist has afforded me an opportunity to make the case for the Republican Party.



How is the race going?

My race is going exceptionally well. I receive endorsements every day and an overwhelming outpouring of support across the entire state. I’ve been endorsed by many active and conservative Republican leaders in Michigan, including the fact that I am the ONLY candidate that has receive endorsements from prominent Black and Hispanic Michigan Republicans. Below is a list of some of the endorsements:





Akindele Akinyemi
Allen Reichle
Amy R. Carl
Ana Maria R. Guzman
Anna Mouser
Attorney General Bill Schuette
Becky Miles
Benjamin J. Soltis
Bev Hansen
Bishop Ira Combs Jr.
Black Conservatives Fund
Blake Edmonds
Brad Wheelock
Clint Tarver
Congressman Mike Bishop
Dan Wholihan
Darlene Dowling Thompson
David Worthams
Dennis Armstrong
Derek Moss
Don Nelson
Donzell Green
Dr. Darlene Lee
Dr. Marylou Olivarez Mason
Dulce S. Cardenas
Eunice Myles Jeffries
Glenda Kennon
Hank Fuhs
Henry Hatter
Ida Byrd-Hill
Jacquelin R. Guzman
Jan Cischke Peabody
Jason Watts
Jennifer Lee-Williams
John Earl Haggard
Jon Chulski
Joseph M. Guzman
Julia Shonka
Kenneth Lloyd
Kenneth Ration
Kim M. Hoppe
LaShunda Griffin-Thomas
Lavel Smith
Linda Birgel
Michael Brown
Michael Moon
Michelle VanWert
Michelle Voorheis
Monica Stephens
Norm Shinkle
Pamela Boyle Williams
Paul Hoppe
Paul Welday
Representative Lana Theis
Rev. Ronda Hawkins
Rick Olivarez
Rick R. Garcia
Roger Kopernik
Ron and Julia Michals
Russ Spencer
Rusty Hills
Stacy Robinson-Swimp
Terry Bowman
Theresa Mungioli
Tony Baltimore
Torion & Jasmine Bridges
Vickie Niklas 
Victor Diaz
Wendy Day
Xavier Durand-Hollis
Yavonne Whitbeck





What is your opponent’s best quality?

From my limited knowledge and exposure to Mr. Jiles, he appears to be personable.

Views on how the MIGOP should choose its 2016 nominee?
Having been a part of the national convention where delegates were threatened to be reduced, I am not in support of any selection process where Michigan’s national delegates are in jeopardy. I was asked recently whether I wanted Democrats to vote in the Michigan Republican Primary. I responded NO. Because Michigan’s voter registration process does not require a declaration of Party affiliation, a closed primary may not result in all Republicans being able to select the candidate of their choosing. The perfect process in the selection of Michigan’s 2016 nominee must ensure our full national voting delegation, all self-identified Republicans can vote, and no one is disenfranchised.

What is the role of your position?
According to the 2012 Bylaws, passed by the MRP State Committee, the Ethnic Vice Chairman shall serve ex-officio as a member of all committees, and shall supervise and direct all ethnic activities designed to attract citizens of every race, color, creed, and nationality to the Republican Party. The Ethnic Vice Chairman shall perform such other duties as the Committee or the Chairman may determine. I am responsible for performing the duties outlined in the bylaws and responsible to ALL Michigan Republicans and their duly elected representatives on the MRP State Committee.


Why would you be the best choice?

I fully understand the office for which I seek re-election and believe I have effectively performed and exceeded the expectations in the performance of the duties of Ethnic Vice Chair!



What are your ideas/plan for the future?
My primary objectives are 1) to strengthen and engage the current African-American Republican, Hispanic-American Republican, and Arab-American Republican advisory councils in the state toward a unified Republican message (based on our platform) for gains in Republican volunteers, donors, participation, and votes for 2016, 2) employ proven strategies to communicate our message and attract new Republican voters, and 3) re-engage and reach out to individuals who may have left the Party toward unifying behind our principles and platform.


Anything you'd like delegates to know?
I am grateful and honored to have served these past four years as Ethnic Vice Chair. The role is without pay and strictly voluntary. I choose to serve in this capacity as a labor of love for my Party and the People within the Party. I am committed to the Republican Party, our Platform, and our Principles.


Where can they go for more information?
Delegates may visit my website at www.LindaLeeTarver.com or on social media, Linda Lee for Michigan on Facebook.

Darwin Jiles with Sen. Rand Paul

>>>Darwin Jiles Jr For Ethnic Vice Chair Endorsements.

    

At the 2015 Michigan Grassroots PowWow -  Where Darwin Officially announced his Candidacy- Michigan Republican National Committeeman Dave Agema's Top Gun Conservative PAC endorsed Darwin Jiles Jr. for Michigan Republican Party's - Ethnics Vice Chair!!!

"Throughout my Air Force, Airline and political career I have had the opportunity to meet and work with many different people from various ethnic backgrounds with their own unique experiences. On February 21 the Michgan GOP will decide on who will be their ethnic vice chair. I have decided to support Darwin Jiles. Why? Because he can relate to the inner city life since he lived it. He watched his father die via criminal activity, lived in poverty, changed his own life and grew in his realization that he needed an education and a relationship with Christ. He understands how to explain to people the necessity of a free market, a work ethic and how the Republican party spreads wealth, not scarcity that welfare causes and espoused by the democrat party. He has learned from his experiences the necessity of a strong family unit. He will be attacked by some in our own party using various half truths in an attempt to character assassinate him for the benefit of another. Please remember that putting others down to build ourselves up is perhaps the ultimate sign of insecurity.."   Col (USAF Ret) Dave Agema
MI RNC National Committeeman . 3 Term MI State representative 74th district


"Darwin Jiles Jr for Michigan Ethnic Vice Chair,  He is Your Man Michigan!!!! A Bridge to the Future....."
C L Bryant Board Member Black Conservative Fund Former president of the NAACP’s Garland, Texas Chapter,  Radio/Television host, and a highly sought-after National Speaker

 "As someone who dared to challenge my sitting representative, after she  continually failed to support the Principles of the RNC Platform, I Proudly Endorse Darwin Jiles Jr for Ethnic Vice Chair. It is not the list of "Dignitaries, Party Loyalists, and officials" who have endorsed you that matter. The important thing is the PRINCIPLES AND PEOPLE STANDING WITH YOU, who have nothing to gain. Darwin has boldly and proudly stated his positions, has walked the walk, and will be able to communicate with inner city voters from a position of mutual interest, Knowledge, and shared Experience." Angela Rigas. Precinct Delegate Caledonia Precinct 2. Candidate for 86th District State Representative


"I started hearing good things about Darwin over 2 years ago. Others kept bringing up this young, Conservative, inner city activist, with a corporate experience background, who had a strategy to engage minorities in historically Democrat stronghold communities, and share the message of the Republican party.  After talking with and meeting Darwin at various political events, I was proud to Introduce him at the Jan 2015 Tea Party Pow Wow, where he chose to announce his run for Vice chair."    David L Wells  Vice President River City Patriots / Tea Party Pow Wow organizer and Co-coordinator. / Former Kent Executive Committee member

 "So why does the Michigan Republican Party need an Ethnic Vice Chair, when we are the party that does not care about race, skin color or ethnicity? The answer is to counter the lies and propaganda of the Left and bring the truth to all the people!! So I enthusiastically endorse Mr. Darwin Jiles, Jr. for MI-GOP Ethnic Vice Chair! His story is compelling. His life is a wonderful example of beating the odds under tough circumstances, working hard and living the American Dream! He’s smart, dignified, hard working, handsome and scrappy! Republicans need him!! It is no secret that our outreach to minority communities has been poor. I fully believe he can do the job, so well, that one day he will make his job obsolete!! Darwin Jiles Jr. for Michigan Republican Ethnic Vice-Chair" Yours very truly," Isabelle Elise Terry ~ MI-GOP State Committee, Republican Precinct Delegate. 3rd District Committee co-chair. Former Kent Executive Committee member


Breaking former Congressman Kerry Bentivolio endorsement of Darwin Jiles Jr for Michigan GOP Ethnic Vice Chair:
"Darwin Jiles Jr and Flint Urban Culture is the name of his organization that is used to promote Conservative Values within the inner city. I just endorsed him for ethnic chair for the GOP and he did not write me a check for my endorsement. I learned after I endorsed him he was actually one of my volunteers during my campaign for re-election."  Kerry Bentivolio Former Congressman  MI 11th District  40 years U.S. Army,
Sgt. First Class Ret.


"Darwin Jiles Jr. is a true Christian Conservative, with a message and the abilities to deliver that message with the passion and street credibility to win the hearts and minds of the exact groups that we need to join the Republican party,...for the betterment of our State and Country."
Randy Bishop - Chairman Antrim County Republican Party

"New blood, fresh perspective, and ethical leadership is what's necessary for this position and we can't look at the recent past and see much in the way of progress in these areas,"  Schultz, "this said, I'm very glad to those of you who supported my own recent effort for MSU Trustee to strongly consider electing a NEW and VIBRANT conservative to this important position to help all Republicans across our great State.  Darwin has my enthusiastic support and I ask you for your vote on the floor as I've been 'shut out yet again' by Norm Shinkle to even be an alternate to the Convention.  Since I'm not there physically, I'll be there in spirit hoping you'll support Darwin for a positive change in this position.  Isn't it time we have a real conservative actually do some work instead of self-aggrandizement?' God Bless,"  Scott Schultz former Candidate MSU Trustee.

"When I first met Darwin, I was intrigued by his tenacity. I remember his desire for an American renewal and it was refreshing. As a tea party leader I am constantly searching for leader's of the next generation. I believe we have found one of those leaders in Darwin. I say this because he understands that doing what is right is not only necessary but it is a winning strategy. Because of this I believe Darwin will not only help grow the base, but he will help return the republican party to its platform."  Mark Petzold President MI Sons of Liberty Riders. President River City Patriots. 3rd District Committeeman. Founder The Awakening Ministry

"Confirmed Vote, Thank you for sending the video. Great message! I plan to vote for you at convention.God bless" Betty Precinct delegate.




Michael Banerian Seeks Youth Vice Chair Position

Michael Banerian
By Brandon Hall   
(Email him at WestMiPolitics@Gmail.com)
 
It's kind of funny-it seems Michael Banerian's biggest supporter these days is Joey Gamrat, former foe turned indispensable surrogate on the trail. He's also even managed to get the support of Ronald Reagan's son, Michael Reagan.
What once looked like it would probably be the most competitive race of the convention  cycle has now turned into a shining example of unity, outreach, and hard work.
Banerian's Facebook describes him as:

"Mike Banerian is 20 years old and a student at Oakland University. His community involvement - political and otherwise - has shown that he is a proven Conservative and ready to help lead the fight to advance Conservative Republican principles across Michigan.

Mike has been involved in politics from an early age. His first major effort was fighting a ballot initiative in his local school district which would raise taxes while cutting corners in the classroom. Mike was able to help organize a successful "Vote No" effort on a large scale, pulling students into the campaign in an effort to have their voices heard.

At age 17 Mike founded his own PAC (Political Action Committee), "Bloomfield Voice," to oppose a similar ballot initiative. As President of his PAC Mike was able to amplify the voices of the students and organize hundreds in an effort to fight the initiative. Raising over $10,000 in donations and mounting a vigorous campaign, Mike helped to defeat virtually the same ballot initiative 3 times in a row.

In the summer of 2013 the Bloomfield Hills school district banned football players from praying after touchdowns and after games. Mike, a strong Christian, launched into action leading to the story’s appearance on Fox & Friends. Mike organized countless students to protest the ban, culminating in a roundtable meeting between students and the superintendent. This led to the overturn of the prayer ban, and a restoration of religious freedoms for students.

Mike has served on a U.S. Congressional Campaign, as Campaign Manager for a city Council campaign, Campaign Manager for Nick Hawatmeh for MIGOP Grassroots Vice-Chair, Volunteer for Mike Bishop for Oakland County Prosecutor, Volunteer and Organizer for Jeff Sakwa for MSU Board of Trustees, and Education Coordinator for Patriot Week.

Most recently, Mike had the privilege of serving as Campaign Manager for Nick Hawatmeh for State Representative. Nick’s race was marked as one of the top 3 races in the state and ranked in the Top 14 in the country by the Future Majority Project.

Mike has been an invited speaker at multiple events for Republican groups, and has been cited in works written by influential political activists such as Michael Reagan, son of former president Ronald Reagan. Mike has also had many of his own works published, covering various political issues in both his local community and the nation as a whole.

Currently Mike serves as the Vice-President of the College Republicans of Oakland University. Partnering with the new Chairman the two were able to take the once great College Republicans chapter and re-establish it as one of the most active chapters in the state in only two semesters. The group spread its influence on campus with hundreds of Oakland students signing up this year alone.

Mike believes that through his experiences he has gained vital skills that would greatly benefit the Michigan Republican Party if elected Youth Vice-Chair. He cannot wait to travel the state to talk with delegates and share his ideas on how the Republican Party can be doing a better job at reaching out to Michigan’s youth. Mike looks forward to earning your support in the coming weeks and months ahead."

___________________



Yo, Adrian! Contentious Battle Against Osmer Leads Interesting CD Races

  


By Brandon Hall   
(Email him at WestMiPolitics@Gmail.com)


The Congressional District races are a facet of the convention I wish I had explored more-lesson learned for the future...

Here are some notable things going on Friday night:

In the First, Chairman Jesse Osmer faces a challenger from Adrian Poulisse. The race took a nasty turn this week when emails went out blasting Luke Londo, a candidate for MIGOP State Committee in the first, hit inboxes of delegates throughout the district.

The emails mentioned Osmer, and represent the worst in politics. No proof of anyone being responsible, not Poulisse, nor anyone else. But one blogger claimed that Osmer could well be behind the emails-despite, again, no evidence against Poulisse, Osmer, or anyone whatsoever.

 "Supposedly, someone in Alpena has raised questions about the sexual orientation of a person in the First District who happens to be Jesse Osmer’s best buddy.  But nobody in the Alpena GOP wrote that email, except perhaps Jesse"

She also says Osmer is the only reason she is not in the Republican Party..."Adrian as chair would make me reconsider joining the party once again. A change in attitude at the top always changes the attitudes and the welcoming disposition of the party everywhere."

First District Chair Jesse Osmer, right

Really?

WMP obtained the emails. They write:

"We're sure by now you've heard about the race for state committeeman to be decided this Friday at the Caucus. But in case you haven't we wanted to share some important information with you about Luke Londo, who is running for state committeeman.
We can confirm what many have asked about. Luke Londo doesn't share our values. Not only is Luke Londo bisexual, but he has advocated for extending the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act in a way that would put the rights and liberties of pastors and people of faith in question. That's right. Luke Londo fully supports the LGBTQ agenda, which among other things would see pastors and people of faith charged with hate crimes and discrimination for refusing to recognize "gay marriage."
We appreciate everything he has done to help MIGOP candidates win elections, but Luke Londo's values are wrong for us and they're wrong for the MIGOP State Committee.
Please vote your values and vote against Luke Londo for state committeeman.
- 1st District Conservatives"
 Another writes:


It also looks like "bisexual hippy conservative" Luke Londo is mad.

Luke's unnaturally close friend and roommate (or are they exes...as in ex-roomies?) Jesse Osmer also attacked us for telling you about Luke's LGBTQ agenda for the MIGOP. *[see footnote note below]

The truth is that Luke is a LGBTQ activist who has always been defined by his bisexuality. Sure Luke has worked to elect Republicans. Except unlike us he's been paid to do so. Luke is a professional political consultant whose sole purpose is to infiltrate the MIGOP to promote a LGBTQ agenda.  Luke Londo himself says good conservative groups like the AFA and Family Research Council have "undermined our party." We're sorry, but the only ones undermining our party are LGBTQ activists like Luke.

Luke's real goal is to subvert not only the Republican platform but also the Michigan State Constitution by using the state committeeman position to campaign for "gay marriage" and the expansion of the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act to give special rights to anyone claiming to be LGBTQ. This would allow the Left to charge pastors with hate crimes and discrimination.

This Friday at Caucus join us in voting our values. Vote against Luke Londo for state committeeman.

- 1st District Conservatives

* footnote Luke Londo says he is bisexual, which means he likes to have sex with men and women. Jesse Osmer at some point lived with Luke. He may still be living with Luke, who right now lives in Traverse City with his girl. If that's the case then they have an interesting arrangement that provokes some interesting thoughts. If Luke really does live his girl then he could be committing a crime because Michigan law prohibits an unmarried man and unmarried woman from "lewdly and lasciviously" associating and cohabiting together."

It makes no sense that Osmer or Londo would attack themselves for an issue that could hurt them with the conservative delegates of the First. After all, this is the District containing the 107th State House seat where Frank Foster's support of Elliott-Larsen gave Lee Chatrfield the "in" he needed to be able to compete with and then beat Foster...

Londo responded via Facebook, writing:

"I'm sure many of you have seen the hit piece, anonymously signed, attacking me and my "agenda." My agenda has always been, and will continue to be, getting our Republican candidates elected and uniting and growing our Party. I appreciate the many calls/texts/e-mails of support from individuals that e-mail purports to represent. I hope to continue representing this District, and hope for your support and vote for State Committeeman."

Whatever internal disputes that caused this email campaign do not justify the type of response utilized-it's not good for real debate in the party.

Poulissse, for his part, denounced the emails and seems to have had nothing to do with it:

"I have signed a letter asking for unity and to stop nameless attack emails.
I also reached out to my opponent to join me by co-signing a letter calling for it to stop. I have yet to get a response. The offer still stands. If Jesse calls you... Ask him if he will work with me on this. I know Jesse does not support those emails and want this to be clear. This is a great opportunity to highlight how we are all Republicans and we can work together even while we run against each other."

Osmer did also:

"Good Evening Delegates, Alternates, and Republican Friends - I just returned from a long day of traveling, working, and having dinner with friends. I wish that I could say I came back to an inbox full of campaign emails highlighting the positive work and future plans of the various candidates running for leadership at this weekend's caucus/convention. 

Unfortunately, that was not the case. Instead, I received a disgusting email attacking my friend, and colleague, Luke Londo. I have worked on two campaigns with Luke. He has fought hard, and fair, not only for the candidate we "officially" worked for, but he has assisted numerous other candidates, from county commission candidates to senate candidates - and everything in-between - all across the District as well. If you want an individual serving you who is fair, dedicated to unifying and growing our Party, and isn't afraid to sign his name to the emails he sends out: Luke is your candidate. 

Although I am supporting some individuals, I want to be on the record that I fully support Luke in his race for State Committee. Our candidates deserve better than to have faceless cowards attack them, and our District deserves better than having to suffer the "eat our own" mentality which we've allowed to divide our Party for far too long. I wish you all good use of your "junk bin" for this email, safe travels this weekend, and a blessed Ash Wednesday. 

Sincerely, Jesse Osmer First District Chair "

Adrian Poulisse

>>>Mike Hewitt is unopposed for Chair in the 2nd District.

Gena Rickney has also announced she is running for one of the 3 female State Committee spots from the district.

On the male side, legendary Hope College professor Jack Holmes seeks another term on the State Committee.

>>>In the 8th, former State Rep. Tom McMillin is running for Chair...

>>>In the 11th, Tea Party fave Matt Maddock seeks the Chairmanship. He writes:

"Dear Fellow Republican:

What is the Republican Party Platform? When you take the time to read all 62 pages of the RNC 2012 Platform, https://www.gop.com/platform/
you will see that it represents the true fabric of what America stands for. It's a combination of principles gleaned from our Constitution, the Bill of Rights and the Declaration of Independence combined. It represents the tenets of a free society that our Forefathers carefully and deliberately crafted for us. I believe in our Platform and its recipe for success. If we follow this recipe, ALL Americans will have economic opportunity and an equal chance to prosper. Government solutions to free-market problems, big-government growth and increased taxes are NOT ingredients in this recipe for success.

There are two ways to build our party. Some believe that we need to move our party "left" of center to be more appealing to democrat voters and our ever-evolving society. Some believe that we can move our party back "right" to the platform and provide bold stark contrast to our opposition. There are tens of millions of disenfranchised Republican voters who are not motivated to vote by our party or our candidates. I have talked to thousands of them while campaigning. The vast majority have told me that they are craving contrast and bold leaders who are willing to move our party back to her foundation; back onto our platform principles, where we can rebuild the American dream on a solid, stable foundation. I am going to do whatever I can to provide these Republicans with what they desire. I hope you will join me in this new Conservative Revolution sweeping our nation.

Let us begin this exciting journey, together.

Your for the Republic,

Matt Maddock"


>>>Thank you if you made it this far! :)


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Abuse Of Corrupt, ObamaCare Backed "340B Program" Rampant, Reforms Needed

By Brandon Hall  
(Email him at WestMiPolitics@Gmail.com)

The "340B" program, originally enacted in 1992, is a federal government program that is supposed to help Americans most in need with access to vital and sometimes life-saving prescriptions.

"Created toward the end of the presidential administration of George H.W. Bush, the 340B Drug Pricing Program was created to provide discounted pharmaceuticals to the poor, the uninsured and the most vulnerable. Essentially, the program required Medicaid participating drug manufacturers to provide discounted covered outpatient drugs to certain eligible health care entities and those entities could contract with pharmacies to dispense drugs purchased through the program on their behalf.

If the issue were that straightforward it would be one thing, but it’s not. Just because the 340B program was created to provide deeply discounted outpatient drugs with the discount going to the consumer doesn’t mean that is what has been going on all the time."

Sadly, the program has been abused again and again. According to the Charlotte Observer:

 "Last year, Duke University Hospital purchased $65.8 million in drugs through the discount program, which saved $48.3 million. It sold the drugs to patients for $135.5 million, for a profit of $69.7 million. The profit would have been $21.4 million if Duke had not participated."

Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley said:

“If ‘non-profit’ hospitals are essentially profiting from the 340B program without passing those savings to its patients, then the 340B program is not functioning as intended."

The Observer also noted:

"The number of U.S. hospitals participating in the 340B program has increased dramatically in recent years, from 591 in 2005 to 1,673 last year, according to the GAO. Some drug manufacturers have questioned whether all those hospitals need a discount drug program.

In January, a coalition of pharmaceutical organizations published a study that questioned whether the program actually benefited uninsured, poor patients and pointed out how hospitals profit from insured patients who get no benefit from the program."

Read more here: http://www.charlotteobserver.com/2013/04/03/3956004/senator-3-nc-nonprofit-hospitals.html#.UyhYtdwpxZ5#storylink=cpy


Read more here: http://www.charlotteobserver.com/2013/04/03/3956004/senator-3-nc-nonprofit-hospitals.html#.UyhYtdwpxZ5#storylink=cpy

Read more here: http://www.charlotteobserver.com/2013/04/03/3956004/senator-3-nc-nonprofit-hospitals.html#.UyhYtdwpxZ5#storylink=cpy
Audits from federal officials show multiple cases of abuse of the program at other hospitals across the country also. (The University of Michigan's hospitals did not have any visible issues.)

This recent headline and story from Forbes kind of says it all.

"Growing Risk Of 340B Drug Changes Means Possible Profits Hit At Walgreens And Others"

 The 340B program was not designed to help Walgreens bottom line-it was designed to save the lives of Americans.

The story says:

"According to the data gathered by Avalere Health, the vast majority of 340B hospitals are providing little charity care. Approximately one-fifth of 340B hospitals provide 80% of all charity care delivered by 340B hospitals, even though those hospitals account for less than half of all 340B hospital beds. Said a different way, 78% of the 340B hospitals provide just 20% of total charity care as outlined by 340B."

Those findings are very similar to an IRS study that found that just 9% of surveyed nonprofit hospitals were responsible for 60% of the community benefit expenditures provided by all of the nonprofit hospitals in the survey.

What is more eyebrow raising is the forecast for 340B drug purchases. Drug purchases through the 340B program will more than double from $6 billion in 2010 to $13.4 billion by 2016, at the same time the share of the population without prescription drug coverage will almost be cut in half."

In conclusion, he writes:

"With more data and reports to be had on the abuses by hospitals and contract pharmacies that are using the 340B program to drive profits instead of passing those savings along to the uninsured and other 340B-eligible patients, the risk to companies like Walgreen and others is that Congress does get its 340B house in order."

What an absolute outrage.



ObamaCare has done nothing to help.

"In 2010, President Obama expanded the program by enabling community health centers to contract with retail pharmacies to distribute drugs with the 340B program discount. According to the Health and Human Services Department inspector general that led to more than 1,000% growth in the number of contract pharmacy arrangements...Walgreens accounts for 45% of all 340B contract pharmacy arrangements."

>>>"So, let’s look at the reality of today’s booming 340B contract pharmacy market:

  • One out of five retail pharmacies is now a contract pharmacy for a 340B entity.
  • Walgreens dominates the market, with nearly 5,400 340B contract pharmacies. Other chains are distant also-rans.
  • While many networks are small, some hospitals now have networks with more than 100 retail pharmacies.
  • Despite being located in densely populated urban areas, some hospitals’ networks extend to  pharmacies that are more than 50 miles away or located in other states.
Clearly, the 340B contract pharmacy market is larger and much more developed than many people believe. At this point, it's not clear that multi-billion dollar health systems' mega-networks, featuring mega-chains, are truly serving the neediest patients in local communities...(I)n the three years since HRSA's notice permitting pharmacy networks, the 340B contract pharmacy market has expanded in ways that no one anticipated. As the data show, hospitals are now building mega-networks that extend far beyond their "community.""
The Office of the Inspector General for the Dept. of Health and Human Services is now stepping up its efforts to hold those who violate provisions of 340B accountable.

According to a popular healthcare blog:

"The OIG will assess the risk of duplicate discounts under 340B-purchased drugs paid through Medicaid managed care organizations and States’ efforts to prevent them. In particular, the OIG will assess whether existing tools and processes to prevent duplicate discounts under the Medicaid fee-for-service program are sufficient under managed care operations. While this review does not focus directly on health centers, as 340B eligible entities the results of the review could impact the way in which health centers account for certain 340B drugs. Further, when combined with the stated intention of the Office of Pharmacy Affairs to conduct an increased number of 340B compliance audits as well as the upcoming direct assessment of health centers’ compliance with 340B requirements (as discussed in the blog from November 5), it is apparent that the 340B program in general will be facing increased scrutiny."

So, what else is next for 340B itself? While much is unknown, it's clear changes are coming.

According to the Michigan Primary Care Association:

"HHS withdrew its proposed “Mega Regs” and the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) posted on its website that in 2015 it plans to issue and accept public comment on proposed guidance that will address key policy issues raised by various stakeholders. HRSA also posted that it is “planning to issue proposed rules pertaining to civil monetary penalties for manufacturers, calculation of the 340B ceiling price, and administration dispute resolution.”
A recent report says:

"Looking ahead, there are a number of unknowns  related to the 340B Program. Pharmaceutical manufacturers and advocacy groups are questioning whether the Program, as currently structured, continues to serve its stated purpose.

In addition, at the same time that HRSA has stepped up its audit activity, HHS’ rule-making authority has been called into question, derailing the much-anticipated Mega Rule."

Also:

"Currently, an individual’s insurance
status is not a consideration in determining whether
he or she is an eligible patient. Critics assert that
failure to so limit the definition constitutes diversion
of 340B funds. HRSA may also try to tighten the
definition of a patient by clarifying the language of
the current definition (for example, clarifying what
constitutes “another arrangement” with the hospital).

Another area of scrutiny is the determination of what
entities are eligible to participate in the program. Some
have suggested that hospital eligibility should be more
closely tied to demonstrated community benefit—for
example, as reported in a hospital’s Form 990,
Schedule H, or Medicare cost report worksheet S-10.

Others argue that none of these reports provides a
sufficiently accurate measure of community benefit to
serve as an appropriate gauge for participation, that
the current hospital categories for Covered Entities
are sufficient to identify eligible providers, and that the
Program should be expanded to inpatient services
and additional categories of safety-net hospitals."

The group "Alliance for Integrity and Reform of 340B" wants hospital eligibility for the program to be given a second look. They believe that "the 340B program is critically important to uninsured indigent patients and that attention is needed to address concerns over whether the program has deviated from its original purpose and is leading to unintended consequences for patients
Even an op/ed from former Michigan Congressman Bart Stupak vehemently defending the program admits it needs some changes, saying that "goes without saying."

"Like any other government program, it goes without saying that 340B can be improved. But does it need invasive surgery, as some of its critics recommend? Absolutely not."

Forbes writes that:

"With one out of five retail pharmacies now a contract pharmacy for a 340B entity, any sweeping change or additional safeguards to ensure the benefits of the 340B program reach its intended recipients could change the profit outlook at participating hospitals and contract pharmacy companies like Walgreens, Rite Aid, Wal Mart, and CVS."

Sounds like that is long overdue-it's time to reform the 340B program. It's what's best for Michiganders, and it's what's best for Americans. Crony capitalist legislation pretending to benefit our country's poorest and most vulnerable is being blatantly abused by businesses and big government to the benefit of a select few large companies-it's time to act.


_________________________________________________________________________
Brandon Hall is a lifelong political nerd from Grand Haven, and is the Managing Editor of West Michigan Politics. >>>Email him at WestMiPolitics@Gmail.com 
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Photo By Darlene Dowling Thompson

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