Dear fellow Republican County Chairman,Kent Moore, you sir are a LIAR. I know for a FACT that the spontaneous protest of that Central Committee vote was orchestrated by a member of the West Chester Tea Party group and NOT by Seth Morgan or his campaign. Stop lying. That the Ohio Republican Party continues this shameful tactic is a testement to the level of desperation they are experiencing.
Having served as a County Chairman in two very different county's in my lifetime, it never ceases to amaze me on how some folks ego's can cloud their judgment.
Rarely in politics have I come across a candidate who is at once so openly disdainful of our party and our process, yet still brazen enough to ask for your support. Seth Morgan is currently trying to have it both ways with you, and I thought you should know the truth about this young man.
Recently, we needed to fill a void on the statewide ticket left when Mary Taylor decided to join John Kasich’s campaign and not seek re-election. You may recall that I immediately sent you an email requesting your consideration of Dave Yost for that spot. Dave had been all over Ohio during the previous year, and had built a statewide network that was truly impressive. Dave’s been in my county, and undoubtedly in many of yours. He is a former County Auditor, and is ready to fill Mary’s shoes right away. Polling has already shown that voters want an Auditor to be Auditor, which neither Seth Morgan, nor David Pepper is or has ever been.
I for one, not even knowing Seth Morgan's interest at the time, did reach out to Dave and ask him if he, given his Auditor background, would consider running for State Auditor. Given the importance of this office and with his proven track record, he would give us the best opportunity to retain it. I along with others I am sure, suggested for him to consider it, knowing he would be the one who would have to make that decision. My decision to urge you to consider Dave’s candidacy was decried by Seth’s campaign as a “backroom deal” and he accused Dave of “bending to political pressure” when he made his decision to step up and bring his considerable skills to the Auditor’s race. But Seth saw fit to judge my decision as political expediency – even though he does not know me. His campaign’s barrage of negative attacks on the party and our traditions and processes did not end there.
About two weeks ago, the Ohio Republican State Central Committee met in Columbus to consider an endorsement in this race. Dave Yost won the endorsement easily, joining the other slate of endorsed candidates we had already chosen to win back Ohio for us in 2010. Seth Morgan’s name was not placed into nomination by anyone on the Committee.
Seth had spent several days leading up to the meeting, apparently asking his small group of vocal supporters to call and harass voting members. Many were told they would draw challengers for their seats when their re-elections came up. They were bombarded with scripted emails and angry phone calls from individuals accusing them of playing old politics and calling them “RINOs” among other things. Instead of vying for the nomination and respecting our party, Seth created a spectacle outside of party headquarters with people holding signs, yelling at committee members as they walked into the building, and chanting angry slogans – all for the media to see – based on fallacies about our party and our chairman, assumed to be true by Seth. One Committee member was physically threatened by a misguided individual who was sent to Columbus. The whole thing was shameful, orchestrated by a guy who thought attacking them would scare them into supporting his candidacy. They are volunteers, elected by the members of their party in their districts – and I for one, don't respond well to threats or scare tactics when doing what I believe to be best for my party.
Now Seth has sent around the email below, asking you at the county level to consider supporting his candidacy. For one, he’s asking you to ignore the State Central Committee, who has already endorsed, in another attempt to divide allegiances and draw attention to himself. He’s also asking you to pay no attention to the pitiful tactics he’s already employed when criticizing party leaders, many who are volunteer's like you and me, following their conscience and doing their jobs on behalf of a well qualified candidate who has out-worked Seth.
Seth may in fact have a future in our party, but he has a lot to learn about working with and for people. I suggest, that as a newly elected official, he work harder at doing the job of which people in his district elected him to do. I’ll be happy to explain to Seth that the reason he will not receive the support of this chairman at this time is not because I believe in “waiting your turn” as Seth again assumes to be the case – but because he needs to learn to respect the GOP and it's elected leaders, before he can expect to earn our support. I hope you’ll join me in delivering this message to him.
Belmont County Chairman
I have been told by a couple of State Central Committee members who were actually at that meeting that the protest was peaceful and that there were no problems. Are you, Kent Moore, calling these State Central Committee Members liars?
Did the Ohio Republican Party actually call the police as Tea Party members who attended the event believe? Come on, Kent Moore, tell the whole story or are you a coward too?
Finally, Kent Moore, YOU and the "leaders" of the Ohio Republican Party don't get to make these decisions. Since you are too arrogant and ignorant to know this, I will educate you, Kent Moore. The people who actually get to make this decision is the good people of Ohio. And the message that the Tea Party protesters were trying to deliver but the Ohio Republican Party "leadership" is too insolent to heed is that we are sick of back room deals like the one that was made to clear the field for Mike DeWine. And THAT is what the Auditor appointment of Dave Yost is all about. Do you honestly think we are so stupid to actually believe that the intelligensia that is the Ohio Republican Party "leadership" worked so hard to shut out Dave Yost for Attorney General wishing that he would just go away and are now ready and willing to welcome him with open arms? What kind of fools do you take us for, sir?
Lastly, I have always been told that the Republican Party stood for freedom and liberty. There is nothing more sacred than our right to choose our own candidates. The Kent Moores of the Ohio Republican Party would strip Seth Morgan of his right to run for office if they had their way. The Kent Moores of the Ohio Republican Party would disenfranchise the rank and file and do away with the primary system all together if they had their way. Is this the sort of people you really want running the party of freedom and liberty? I not only say "NO!" but "HELL NO!" There is NOTHING democratic about back room deals that limit our freedom to elect whomever we choose.
2/15 UPDATE: I just realized that I have been unfair to Kevin DeWine with this headline. Kent Moore is an idiot who -- near as I can tell -- acted alone. That it is even plausible that the Ohio Republican Party would sanction this slander against the Tea Party movement says a LOT about the state of affairs here, but I should have been more careful with the headline.