Posts tagged Republican Party of Minnesota

In the news: Moving Minnesota’s Presidential Primary

I signed up for a public effort to move up Minnesota’s presidential primary along with former Republican elected officials and party leadership. The new push was started by the Minnesota DFL’s elected officials and party leadership. The Pioneer Press reported the details of the proposal.

To the soundtrack of Prince’s “Let’s Go Crazy,” a group of top Minnesota Democrats paraded before the national party Thursday to make their case for allowing the state to move its presidential primary up to be among the first in the nation.

Putting Minnesota in the company of — or perhaps displacing — Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina, could bring unprecedented national attention and political activity and money to the state, perhaps beginning as soon as 2024.

But for anything to change, the state Republican Party would have to agree, and so far, they’re mum — although some Minnesota Republicans have voiced their support for the idea

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David Hann, chair of the Republican Party of Minnesota, has declined to comment to the Pioneer Press this week. Democrats could be hoping that signals of support from the DNC, as well as potential pressure from other Republicans, could give Hann cover to support the idea. The state Republican party’s profile could raise considerably from that of a flyover purple state to an essential stop on the campaign trail.

So far, a number of prominent establishment Republican figures have publicly stated their support, including former Gov. Tim Pawlenty, former U.S. Sen. Norm Coleman, former U.S. Rep. Vin Weber, and six former high-ranking officials of the state Republican party: former chairs Rob Eibensteiner and Ron Carey, former deputy chairs Kelly Fenton and Michael Brodkorb, former Executive Director Becky Alery, and former Communications Director Mark Drake.

DFL Chair Martin told the DNC Thursday he’s confident the state party will ultimately support the change. “I’m convinced we get them there,” he said.

The DNC has said it will announce its preferences in August.

Click here to read the complete story from the Pioneer Press.

In the news: Republican Party of Minnesota Precinct Caucus Data

The Brainerd Dispatch published an extensive story regarding the ongoing controversy about the accuracy of the Republican Party of Minnesota’s precinct caucus data. The story references my tweets which first reported about the issues.

Hann said the errors came from the mistaken inclusion of attendees of previous caucuses in the data by those leading the basic political organization units, or BPOUs — the lowest level of party political organization. Delegate and attendee information from those found to be erroneous were in the process of being corrected, Hann said Feb. 15.

State Party Chairman David Hann acknowledged errors in caucus data in a statement last month after former GOP operative Michael Brodkorb noted a major discrepancy in the number of reported caucus attendees (35,196) and the number of people who voted in the straw poll for governor (17,801).

Hann said the errors came from the mistaken inclusion of attendees of previous caucuses in the data by those leading the basic political organization units, or BPOUs — the lowest level of party political organization. Delegate and attendee information from those found to be erroneous were in the process of being corrected, Hann said Feb. 15.

Click here to read the complete story from the Brainerd Dispatch.

In the news: Issues with Republican Precinct Data

I spoke with the Minnesota Reformer about integrity issues with the precinct caucus data from the Republican Party of Minnesota.

The Minnesota Republican Party is confronting discrepancies in key data from its recent precinct caucuses, creating chaos even as local conventions are supposed to begin Friday.

Some candidates for governor and secretary of state are calling for an audit and postponement of the party conventions while the data is sorted out.

Former GOP operative Michael Brodkorb said the state party released a new batch of data to campaigns on Friday showing there were 35,196 caucus attendees, but with 99% of precincts reporting, only 17,801 people voted in the Feb. 1 straw ballot for governor, prompting campaigns to question the results.

Normally, the numbers of caucus attendees and straw poll voters are comparable.

“It doesn’t make any sense,” Brodkorb said in an interview. “It’s not a one-off.”

The disarray has to be sorted out quickly because local conventions are supposed to start soon. Attendees at those conventions will determine who will be delegates to the state GOP convention in May, when the party will gather to endorse a candidate for governor and other statewide offices.

Shortly after Brodkorb tweeted Saturday about the issue, Lucas Baker, political director for the state Republican Party, sent an email to candidates and campaigns acknowledging the problem with their precinct caucus data, and saying they were looking into it, Brodkorb said.

State Republican party officials have not returned a phone call seeking comment.

Click here to read the complete story from the Minnesota Reformer.