Rebuilding the GOP – National

I know it’s a little late in coming, but I will plainly state this time I know I’m in over my head. I will touch on a few things that have caught my eye and leave you to connect the dots. If there’s one thing that’s becoming obvious it’s that there really is no cohesive plan on the national level for the GOP. There are, however, several factions offering their own version as the better choice.

First, there are some obvious states to shore up quickly. Barack Obama is tapping governors to fill cabinet posts. Republicans need to organize quickly to help viable candidates succeed. Arizona comes to mind.

Under Arizona state law, the ascension of Democratic Gov. Janet Napolitano to Homeland Security Secretary will mean Arizona Secretary of State Jan Brewer will assume the reins there.

Jan Brewer’s a Republican.

Republicans need to work hard to make sure the state stays red for the next gubernatorial race. New Mexico, just next door, will also be electing a new governor some day soon. Any chance?

Also, some geek needs to check the map of governors against the map of state returns and figure out how much help states with Republican governors that voted Obama need. Are organizations weak and in need of repair? Is the state turning or can it be saved? Those are really important questions that need to be answered state by state.

To be quick, let’s look at Minnesota. Governor Tim Pawlenty was rumored to be a VP pick for a while. The Republicans held their nominating convention in the Twin Cities. Yet Minnesota went to Obama 54% to McCain’s 44%. What the heck went wrong? Is it catching?

I’ve heard Obama ran a very organized ground campaign there. (Trivia: a former City of Brookfield Park and Rec summer employee got his post graduate career start on the Minnesota ground game for Obama.) Is that what caught Republicans off guard?

Voting groups were lost in the 2008 election. US News showed 5 groups to watch: Hispanics, Evangelicals, African Americans, Women, and Youth. Hispanics, in particular, flocked to the Democratic candidate, as did African Americans and Youth. Women went, too. Women are way more than half of the voters.

Here’s a summary of the damage.

That left Evangelicals. They voted McCain, but it obviously wasn’t enough.

The next issues? Immigration is still popping up. The economy is sure to be a hot button issue for a while. What’s on your list?

How do you think the voting blocks will realign? Will African Americans show up for a mid-term vote like they did the election? How long will Obama’s coattails be in 2010?

Others are taking a serious look at this. There’s Rebuilding the Party. The Republican governors have had a chat. Time will tell if anything sticks.

Remember the second post? Republicans need a vision. Without that nothing else will fit. Obama had one, he wanted to rule. In general, I don’t think Democrats did, though. If Republicans can find one that fits, I think it will go a long way to rebuilding the GOP and besting Democrats in the 2010 races.

That’s it. I finally finished the series. I’m going to give myself a gold star for effort, and then go clean the driveway.


  1. […] Kilkenny writes the last part of her series on Rebuilding the GOP at Fairly […]