Monday, May 14, 2012

The AZ GOP Convention Cluster F*^#!

Since Saturday afternoon, our telephone's have been ringing off the hook concerning the recent Arizona Republican Party State Convention to elect the Delegates to the GOP National Convention this summer in Tampa, FL!

Many longtime State Commiteeman & PC's have complained about how poorly this convention was run.  One PC had this to say:

The disgraceful scene made by the Ron Paul supporters was well orchestrated and was disgusting to say the least. Chairman Morrissey should have told them to immediately leave or have the Sheriffs escort them out. Mitt Romney’s son did not deserve this. We would never allowed it if it were Ron Paul’s Son. The Ron Paul Supporters are a duplicate for the WALL STREET Occupiers without tents! A disgraceful bunch.
We've received over 250 e-mails ALL talking about the comvention and how horrible it was.  Just look on Facebook to see many of the comments left by the good folks who attended.

What many of the people are concerned about was the lack of preparation by the Romney campaign.  NATHAN SPROUL, head of Lincoln Strategies Group, headed the Romney effort (or lack of). 

Another longtime, prominent State Committeeman told us this:

If the state party and the Romney team run the campaign the way they have done things so far, Romney will lose Arizona to Obama in November.

Randy Pullen was part of the Romney/State Party planning team that organized the May 12th convention. For him to blame it all on Tom Morrisey is absurd. Randy did nothing to anticipate any of the problems.

While Randy might like to take credit for the smoothe running of 2008 state convention, he was just the figurehead. It was the McCain campaign team that made sure Helen Purcell handled the balloting and it was the McCain campaign team that ran the caucuses, distributed slates of delegates and made sure the convention ran efficiently.

Just what happened Saturday?

1. No pre-printed sign-in sheets were available when delegates checked in. Credentials volunteers had to use blank yellow tablet sheets to have delegates sign in.

2. There were no ballots distributed in the credential envelopes. Ballots had to be passed out individually in the CD caucuses (twice) and in the at-large elections (three times).

3. There was no agenda and no program distributed to the delegates in their packets

4. Not enough ballots were printed.

5. In the CD 2 caucus Carolyn Cox was listed on the ballot twice.

6. The Romney campaign forgot to have one of its recommended delegates, Ed Hedges, placed on the ballot.

7. It took three hours to produce a convention credentials report. Should have taken 20-30 minutes.

8. The delegates were sent to their respective CD caucuses before the credentials report was presented. This meant that after about twenty minutes in the CD caucuses. Every caucus had to stop and everybody had to return to the convention floor so they could vote to accept the credentials report.

9. Only two of five tabulating machines were actually working. This meant that it took two hours for the CD caucus ballots to be counted. Counting of the at-large ballots went well passed 9:30 PM.

10. * Asterisks were printed on the ballots beside the names of the prospective delegates preferred by the Romney campaign.

11. The preferred Romney candidates were listed in the first twenty places on the at-large ballot.

12. The State Chairman read the names of the preferred Romney candidates out loud from the podium.

13. The first at-large vote was tallied incorrectly and had to be thrown out and the convention had to re-vote.

14. The problems with the balloting could easily have been avoided by hiring Maricopa County Recorder Helen Purcell to run the elections. The State Party and Romney campaign refused to do that, because they don’t like Helen Purcell. Their excuse was the cost ($5,000). But when Bruce Ash offered to pay the cost, they still refused, using instead a Rob Haney associate, whose ballot counting procedures had been proven to be laughably incompetent in previous (and much smaller) party elections.

 (NOTE: We received an e-mail sent by ROB HANEY - MCRC Chairman on this):

From: Rob Haney []

Sent: Friday, May 11, 2012 5:44 PM

To:  all
Cc: 'Me';; 'Tom Morrissey';; 'pmason'; 'Thayer Verschoor'; ALBERTOGUTIER@AOL.COM; David Ludwig; 'Joe Abate'

Subject: Re: Charlotte
We might as well get this in the open, Warren. I do not know whose decision it was to release the last ballot early to someone so a favored candidate slate could be published. This places the whole integrity process of the election in question. It also calls into question why the decision was made to spend unnecessary LD 11 funds for the services of the county recorder to print the ballots. Was it to make sure that only one side was given the ballot in advance as opposed to using the services the MCRC provides through George Teegarden at only the cost of supplies? George releases the ballot in advance of the election to be fair and "transparent" to all PCs.


15. Ballot counting continued until well after 9:30 PM, at which time a quorum no longer existed. There now needs to be a runoff for the position of National Committeewoman, which must be done by mail-in ballot, because the convention was so badly managed that they could not get a second ballot for National Committeewoman accomplished,.

WOW!  Many are now calling for AZ GOP Chairman TOM MORRISSEY to resign after this fiasco.  Do we really want RUSSELL PEARCE as State Party Chairman?  I think NOT!

The immediate solution to this problem is for Morrissey to FIRE the entire 'Motley Crew' down @ 24th Street & Thomas.  They are the most incompetent group we have ever seen running the AZ GOP!  Time for them ALL to go before we lose elections!


Arizona Ron Paul supporters boo Romney's son off stage  by Rebekah L. Sanders - The AZ Republic


Look who was booed and look who did the booing and post your thoughts - By Greta Van Susteren


Barbara Espinosa said...

The Romney Campaign did not run the AZ 2012 State Convention. I was in their campaign room the entire time. They couldn't leave it unattended the Paul volunteers had come in and taken down their banner that was visible from the floor.I was on Security duty. When I told the Romney Staff it was chaos, she said I know. I have had several conversations with the GOP on how a convention should be. I asked are they taking any of your advice? Her reply with a disgusted look, NOT ONE. This disaster belongs solely at the feet of the current GOP administration. NO ONE Else.

Anonymous said...

If only someone had alerted party activists that Tom Morrissey was in over his head, or that he was incompetent, or that he surrounded himself with other incompetents.

Oh wait, you guys have been on it from the beginning. Too bad people weren't listening. Now the country may have to pay the price in November.

Way to go, AZGOP. You still have time to act, but not much.

Matt said...

Why are you accusing ron paul delegates of chaos? We followed the rules. I was curtious with Romney voters infront and back of me, we all got along just fine. Excuse me that the Romney elite came on stage to push a Romney slate during a convention, do you think thats our fault? There were Romney voters infront of me who felt that it was unfair to everyone for everything to be so biased and geared towards "unity" when it should be a bout policies and nominating the right people not people who cheer lead. The convention was a mess because Romney delegates and chairmen got mad when they realized that they were not prepared or organized as well as Ron Paul delegates. You can blame the people in the stands all you want but they didnt have anything to do with the voting going on the floor. Our ron paul delegates were very organized and we knew the rules and we challenged you at every corner and you didn't like it and then when you began to lose you rejected it and the chairman illegally adjourned the meeting when there was a presence of 30 percent of the credentialed delegates on the floor who didnt get to vote I or Nay on the adjournment of the meeting. You want to talk about corruption? look at what the Chairman did. Look no further.

Tony GOPrano said...

Matt, you lost all credibility with me (and most of the attendees) when you all chose District 6 Deadbeat David Fitzgerald as your 'new' Paul State Chairman.

Guess now I'm going to have to do another article about the PaulBots and their horrible, childish actions. Don't think you will like it Matty?

Anonymous said...

Jeff- the Romney campaign was not to blame. It sounds like you have your facts wrong. Randy Pulllen may not have been a MCCAIN guy but he was smart enough to realize that the convention would be his legacy and made sure to listen to instructions and guidance. What happened on Sat is essentially what happens when activists and not operatives run the show and choose not to listen to any one. Everyone would have loved to have Helen Purcell- and multiple people from the Romney campaign said they had offered to pay for her, but we're thwarted at every move. It's time to clean house at the AZ GOP and bring in people who k ow what they are doing and who will work with campaigns and not against them.

Josh said...

I wrote comments about this and some other thoughts I had on the convention. I am glad you caught this story because the incompetence of that convention was truly amazing. I could add about 50 other items that weren't even mentioned above. Did anyone mention CD2 voting was more confusing then navigating downtown construction. They couldn't even give a solid answer how many votes to place or what the votes meant. They also forced about 100 people to spend 3 hours in an area the size of a double wide! They elected a delegate who wasn't there and nobody claimed to know over someone present and voted for. That was the last I heard anyways.

Anonymous said...

Makes you long for the good old days of Chairman Bob Fannin when he had the 2004 AZGOP Convention organized like a well-run machine!

Anonymous said...

'the Paul volunteers had come in and taken down their banner that was visible from the floor.'

Barbara, I was there as a delegate and you are flat out lying.

Nathan Sproul said...

I rarely respond to blogs where I am mentioned, but your facts are so demonstrably wrong that I feel like I need to.

First, I am likely the only person in Arizona who served as Executive Director of the AZGOP during a state convention and also our Party nominee’s consultant in a different convention. I know both perspectives.

When I was Executive Director in 2000, I did everything the Bush campaign requested. I recognized their role in the process as the nominee. That is not what happened this year. In fact, it’s the exact opposite.

I was invited to my first meeting about the convention in March. Romney had not yet won Wisconsin. Santorum, Gingrich and Paul were all still in the race and contesting states. Therefore, our ability to offer suggestions was limited. At that meeting, the AZGOP informed the attendees they planned to use a volunteer for Tally and Credentials.

I voiced my strenuous opposition to the idea. I told them that if voting were messed up they would be embarrassed on a national scale. Ultimately, that is exactly what happened.

Once Gov Romney became the presumptive nominee in late April, they still were unwilling to go with Purcell’s operation even though we strenuously requested they change their mind. I can only think of one thing I suggested to them that they actually did. And, that was only after I told them they would be considered a hostile state party by the Romney campaign if they didn’t do it.

It’s not my intention to point fingers. However, when you state that we weren’t prepared on the Romney campaign for Saturday that is factually inaccurate. We won 26 of 29 national delegates for Gov Romney. We control the delegation and the Romney campaign is very pleased with the results.

As much as you don’t want to hear this, Rob Haney, Tom Husband, Randy Pullen and Bruce Ash were instrumental in helping craft the strategy that led to victory on Saturday.

I think our Party would be much better served if we all let the battles of the past go and became a united Party.

I’m not disagreeing there were colossal screw ups on Saturday. I had to navigate every single one of them while also trying to defeat the Paul insurgency. It was a challenging day, but a victorious day for Governor Romney.

Pepper Draper said...


So do you believe the election results were/are reliable? Remember I was there in the room with you when they were being tallied....

Pepper Draper said...

Nathan, maybe you could add your commentary of what some of those screw ups were?

sheddinglightaz said...

Collosal screw-up's.... incomptenence.....
Nope.... well planned course of action... with more to come.....

Controlling the badges is the key to controlling issues with who is going to vote for who on first ballot.

Just trying to confirm you agree and we will only pass out badges on nomination day to delegates who the Governor and you are both convinced will vote for our PPE winner.

Please advise.


Begin forwarded message:

From: Bruce Ash
Subject: Potus voting
Date: March 24, 2012 12:12:36 PM MST
To: thomas morrissey , "Mr. Randy Pullen Randy"

What randy said was best answer.

We will caucus and YOU will select those who actually vote


We MUST control the delegate badges on the date of the POTUS nomination
And ONLY give them to those who will vote for Romney

Sent from my iPhone

Tony GOPrano said...

sheddinglightaz would you please e-mail me -