The Chairman for County Commissioner District 3, Jim Bensberg, has sent an email informing the Delegates, Alternates, and the Officers in District 3 what the next steps to get to the Assembly are.
He has tentatively set 26 March 2020 for a electronic Assembly. The chair will open the Assembly for Nominations for Candidate for El Paso County Commissioner, District 3, at noon, Saturday, 21 March 2020 and end at noon, Sunday, 22 March 2020.
Nominations and seconds must be sent separately, via email and must be delivered to both the Chair, Jim Bensberg, at and the Vice Chair, Paul Paradis. See the email sent this morning by Jim Bensberg for their email addresses. If you did not receive the email, you can contact us at CCD3@rapko.com and we will provide an unredacted copy of the Chairman’s email.
8:30 am – 11:30am: Delegates are expected pick up their packets, vote, and return their vote to the Teller Committee
11:30 am – Noon: The Credentialing committee will elevate the necessary alternates.
Noon – 12:30 pm: The alternates will arrive and credential into the assembly
12:30 pm – 1:00 pm: The alternates will pick up their packets, vote, and return their packets.
1:30 pm: The County Assembly will close.
In addition to the assembly, State Representative District 15 and State Senatorial District 12 will occur simultaneously with the County Assembly schedule. The Amended Call does not allow time for that to occur, so we are unsure what that actually means.
If you need directions to the County Assembly, you can find them here on our precinct mapper application. See you at the County Assembly.
The EPC GOP held a private meeting last night, 17 March 20. The agenda and the purpose of the meeting are unknown except we have learned through a couple of leaks that the proxy method was discussed and the County Assembly was CANCELED!
We are getting reports that not all candidates or bonus members were informed about this meeting.
Rober Blanken, the House District 17 Chair sent an email describing the requirements for the State Central Committee Meeting and when the proxy forms are due to the Vickie Tonkins. The Email was sent to 28 people outside of Vickie and Robert.
My Division meet today to assign state delegates to open positions. We had 7 positions to fill, but we could only fill two of them. The significance of the deficiency is the responsibility for filling the open delegate positions now gets elevated out of our hands. The division leader said the delegates will now be filled by the party chair, but I believe that is wrong and they will go to the House District Chair to fill and not the party chair.
When looking at the EPC GOP’s public facing website and social media, it is easy to come to the conclusion that they are not good at messaging. You could chalk that up to volunteers not being experienced at running websites or not interested in posting on social media. I chalk it up to the party not having a plan. A plan would give the volunteer of the day the ability to see how their actions should fit into the organization as a whole. But something more sinister could be afoot. We could be witnessing an insurrection at the EPC GOP HQ.
Normally, you must attribute to stupidity those actions that you can attribute to malice. As humans, we are very good at assigning patterns to behavior whether those patterns exist or not. I am no different. In the case of the EPC GOP, I originally started off with the opinion that the party lacked a plan and the poor public perception of the EPC GOP was due to that fact. I pieced together my opinion after spotting pattern after pattern that convinced me that my hypothesis was correct as the EPC GOP seemingly stumbled from one thing to another without a cohesive message.
My opinion that the EPC GOP needs a strategic plan sent me on the path of attempting to get the party to build a plan. This journey has been ongoing for about a year and a half. Over that journey, I’ve seen other patterns emerge from the party. The more I dug, the more I realized that the party didn’t have plan, and they didn’t even know how to put a plan together. I learned, that in fact, it was stupidity, and not malice that was driving the problems I saw.
But recently, a new pattern has emerged. A pattern more sinister in origin and more harmful to the party. The vice-chair is undercutting the chair. She is taking active steps that dilute and contradict the message of the chair from the party. Actions like developing a website separate from the El Paso County website. Actions that appear willful by the party can be thought of as indications of the vice-chair working against the will of the chair. Things like the vice-chair asking a campaign to drop out of the caucus and assembly process and petition on to the ballot, or a mysterious form stating “Individuals who have not paid their delegate or alternate fee will not be seated at the county assembly and will be disqualified as a delegate or alternate to the State Assembly.” only showing up in some of the precinct caucus packages. Patterns emerge that support the idea that the disjointed actions and mistakes made by the party may be the result of a vice-chair cutting down the chair’s authority.
It is not only indirect actions that contribute to the pattern. Even the words of vice-chair betray the idea of an insurrection. In a phone call with the vice-chair, she said openly the only plan the party has is to gain precinct leaders. Or as she operated behind the scenes to attempt to push out bonus members using unfounded smears. All of these actions help shape my opinion that at a minimum we have two officers in the party not on the same page.
Patterns come and go and humans see them. They can be attributed to the randomness of the universe, stupidity, malice, a methodical march to power, or all of the above. A cure though, does exists. A public facing strategic plan that coordinates all of these actions would go a long way in proving the party as a whole is on the same page. Transparency must be our objective.
If you are new to the County Assembly process, you may not know what to expect. This year the County Assembly is scheduled for 28 March 2020 at Sand Creek High School. The El Paso Republican Party has apportioned 1489 Delegates and 1489 Alternate Delegates over all of the 291 Precincts in El Paso County. The apportionment depended on the number of active republican voters in your precinct, but every precinct was given at least two delegates and two alternate delegates.
The Assembly will begin at 9 am, but expect to get there early so that you can be signed in to the Assembly. The El Paso County Party will form a credentialing Committee to ensure all delegates are authorized to participate according to the County Bylaws. If the credentialing committee disqualifies a delegate, or if a delegate is not present, alternates will be elevated to Delegate status at that time. Until then, the alternate delegates are generally segregated to a separate room.
After credentialing is done, the credentialing committee will make an official credentials report. The general assembly will hear the report and offer any amendments. When the amendment process is complete, the general assembly will vote on the adoption of the credentialing report. Generally these votes are made by voice, but in the case of close vote, a count may be taken.
Next the general assembly will move on to the process of ratifying the newly elected Central Committee Members. These include the new precinct leaders voted into office at their respective precinct caucuses.
After the ratification of the new Central Committee member is complete, the general assembly will move to elect 567 delegates and alternates to the State Assembly. This process will be similar the ratification process for the new Central Committee Members. After the delegates are selected, the general assembly may make time for the politicians looking for access to the primary ballot to give speeches. The speeches are generally limited to a few minutes each. Finally, the general assembly will hear any resolutions or any other business that the members may propose.
After the general assembly has conducted its business, delegates will break up into their respective House and Senate Districts to conduct business important to their respective districts. This is arguably the most important thing the delegates will do during assembly. Generally, the House District meetings occur first with the Senate and County Commissioner District meetings occurring later in the day. The general assembly attempts to deconflict all of the meetings so that delegates can move between meetings and make their votes.
After the breakout meetings, votes for the House Districts, Senate Districts, and County Commissioner Districts will occur. The general assembly will meet one last time to conclude the County Assembly. The Teller committee will provide vote counts. The General Assembly will conduct any new business important to the Assembly.
The County Assembly is a long, but interesting day. If you are interested in local politics, the County Assembly is the place to be.
At last night’s Executive Committed meeting, the EPC GOP Treasurer, John Pitchford, released what could only be called a fictional representation of party’s finances. Instead of an open and honest accounting of the financial health of the party, John released a document full of half-truths and forgotten debts.
To the untrained eye, it would appear that the EPC GOP had nearly $20k on hand. That was until the questions began to come in from the committee. One interested person asked about a loan the EPC GOP took from the state party. John’s answer was to joke about it and quickly admit that, yeah, maybe he should list the fact that the EPC GOP owed $10k to the state party. Then questions about payment for the caucuses started to come from the committee. Again, John’s answer was to use a quick and nervous joke and then give an honest answer. The checks have been written and sent out for caucus, but they haven’t cleared yet and are not reflected in the cash on hand figure on his report. When all the questions from the committee were done, it was clear that the balance on the sheet would read in the red and not nearly $20k if it wasn’t for a $10k loan from the state party.
When it comes to any message that they think they can spin, the EPC GOP goes on a full Politburo style PR campaign of misinformation and deception instead of just being honest. They have not learned that in politics the cover up is often more damaging than the misdeed. It infects everything they do. From Human Relations, to finances, to their social media. You cannot trust anything put out by the party’s leadership.
The secrecy and half-truths must end if the EPC GOP wants to regain its prestige as the number one Republican party in the state. Until they figure that out, they will remain, “No more powerful than a large high school’s student council ” — an anonymous source.
The El Paso County Republican Party released Republican active voter counts for each of the El Paso County precincts. We summed them up for you and are releasing them here. As for the individual numbers, you can find them on the precincts map. The count for the entire county is 155,006 active voters.
We will include our own analysis about the voter counts in a separate post. Our analysis will include the number of active Democrats and Independents as well. If you would like to conduct your own analysis, you can purchase the same data set that we use from the El Paso County Clerk and Recorder by sending an email to the El Paso County Election Department. The cost of the data is$25 with some administrative fees associated with the delivery method you choose.