Friday, February 05, 2010

Mercer County GOP "Accidentally" Reveals PA-3 Endorsement

You know the RCA dog Nipper? His cute, little head tilted to one side when he heard sound from the RCA phonograph in years gone by.

Well, my head went "RCA dog" when I attended the Mike Kelly meet-and-greet at Beans on Broad in Grove City, PA. Kelly is one of many GOPers who want to unseat Kathy Dahlkemper in PA-3. When I showed up, many of the party insiders were there. I briefly spoke to Kelly before he was about to give his speech - seemed like a nice guy.

Mercer County GOP Chairman David King stood in front of the group to introduce Kelly. And that's when it happened - King called Kelly "our" candidate. Really.

I asked him about it afterward, wondering if I missed an announcement about an endorsement. King quickly got defensive and said he must have misspoke since the MerCo GOP has an open primary. Fine. I'm not naive, but people do make mistakes. Explanation accepted.

I then asked him if he was going to the Clayton Grabb event in Hermitage that afternoon. He knew NOTHING about it. It was an incredibly strange admission for the person who is the leader of the county party. I had heard rumors that Kelly was the GOP pick, and when coupled with the "accidental" endorsement, this ignorance of Grabb's event was quite striking.

Then Grabb's event came along, which I sadly missed - my class at Duquesne was calling, of course. Fortunately, The Herald showed up to report on it (Matt Snyder was also at the Kelly event). To my "surprise" it seems that Chairman King took Grabb to task when he said that the GOP needed to return to its roots of conservatism. Now, in all fairness, I don't know how much of the story is embellishment. The encounter might have taken ten seconds. But the substance is what matters.

A participant in several Tea Party events, Grabb promised to bring conservative values back to the Republican Party.

David O. King, Mercer County’s Republican party chair, took issue with that. He said he’s been active locally for 20 years and wasn’t aware their values had changed. He also asked why more Tea Party activists can’t swing by the Republican headquarters in Mercer.

Grabb initially said that Republicans had swung too far toward the center, which King said he “doesn’t believe.”

Several members of the audience, who said they attended Tea Party rallies, took issue with that. They cited the 2008 presidential run of Sen. John McCain and last year’s House race in New York in which party leaders chose liberal Dede Scozzafova as their nominee. Conservative opposition to that choice sunk Scozzafova’s campaign and highlighted the gulf between party leaders and rank-and-file voters.

You see, King said NOTHING when Kelly said basically the same thing. In fact, he was glowing as Kelly spoke. Kelly lampooned the fiscal mess the GOP and the Dems have made.

And BOTH Kelly and Grabb are right. The GOP is a mess. You only have to look at the slobbering support for McCain (a socialist Republican if there ever was one). When you get to the county level, there was support for Arlen "he's with us when it counts" Specter and continual glowing praise for Phil "I never met pork I didn't like" English. And then there's state senator Bob Robbins who gladly catalogs his pork on his own Web site. Most recently, we have seen overwhelming support for Tom "I'm too busy campaigning to do my job" Corbett. Ugh.

Yes, King has a job to do - to show a unified GOP. Personally, such a job would make me sick. I'm conservative first and foremost. The GOP just happens to be the closest political party to match my views. But it has been a pathetic shadow of its former self since 1994. After that, the GOP congress got greedy and sloppy. Bush killed us with his spending and getting TARP I underway. Our Harrisburg contingent (with few exceptions) went spending-silly, including the disgusting payjacking, WAM abuse, and staff bonusgate.

If King isn't aware that the GOP has steered violently to the left, then perhaps he should step down. And if he can't appear equal during an "open" primary, then he absolutely needs to step down immediately.


billadams said...

Rich, good article!

Jill Klinko said...

I wish I could say I was shocked by this week's developments regarding the Republican Party issues. The reality is this is old school politics for which we have become accustom. Apparently the GOP, like Obama, and his band of merry men, learned NOTHING from the Scott Brown victory in Massachusetts.

King's "accidental" endorsement of Mike Kelly in the PA 3rd District is a prime example of that. Career politicians selecting their own blue blood country club types who THINK they know what is best for the people. Open primary? – I think not. King's admission that he knew nothing of Clayton Grabb's event later that same day speaks volumes. Is that not his job? To know what is happening in his own party; his own county? Isn't he suppose to support ALL the candidates until the PEOPLE select THEIR candidate? And then when he did eventually show up at the event he did so by attacking Mr. Grabb. Is this how we show a unified front? If Dr. King had been doing his job he would know where the candidates stand on the issues and would not have to "duke it out" in public.

And then there is Mike Kelly. When asked what distinguished him from the other candidates said he was not sure. (Sharon-Herald, February 3, 2010) NOT SURE!?!? Don't you think that he should have done a little research on this before throwing his hat in the ring? Or did the entrenched party leadership finally convince him this was the right thing to do and he would have their support? It is not surprising to me that Dr. King "wasn't aware that the party values had changed". (Sharon-Herald, February 5, 2010) Let this be a wake up call to all Republican Party Representatives – WE THE PEOPLE HAVE HAD IT!!!!

I am a well educated stay at home mom who has finally had enough. It is not enough to merely register and vote anymore. You MUST get involved and voice your opinions loud and strong. We need big changes within our own party. We need someone to represent Main Street America - someone whom we the people decide is the right representative for us.

I urge people to go to and see where the candidate stands on the issues and make your own decisions. Don't let the party machine decide for you. I find the GOP's arrogance appalling. We need to get the concentration of political power out of the hands of these professional politicians, people who regard themselves as entitled to the roles that they have.

The Mercer County Republican Annual Lincoln Day Dinner will be held Saturday, February 20th, 2010 with a pre-dinner reception at the home of Senator Bob and Cindy Robbins. You better believe WE THE PEOPLE will be watching – and attending – and making OUR voices heard.

Patricia Ann M. said...

What is it about Mike Kelly that scares you so much that you have to attack him personally? To my knowledge, none of Mike Kelly's backers have attacked any of the other candidates.

Could it be that your candidate's background and involvement in the community is so brief that it cannot be commented on?

Mike Kelly has had 41 years of active involvement in Butler and has been involved in many findraising and community activities.

His record speaks for itself.

Where has your candidate been?

We all should have the same objective: unseating Kathy Dahlkemper this fall.

Clearly Mike Kelly is the only candidate with real life experience who can back up what he says.

Let's not forget the Perot factor in 1992 when many felt good about voting for a candidate
who had no chance of winning, thus enabling Bill Clinton 8 years in office. So, who really won?

Al Kiser said...

Why Tea Party members are endorsing Steve Fisher for Congress in PA-3‏‏

As citizens, we are responsible for electing leaders that are of good moral character, exhibit incorruptible ethics and care deeply about our country. All too often, we get the leaders we deserve, because we have not invested in the time to learn about them. More often, we just blindly follow what the Democrats and Republicans have picked for us. Then too, so many American shrug their civic duty to even vote. That is the sad state of our country today. We need to choose honest leaders that believe that America is a christian nation and endeavors to do good. They should believe that the family is sacred and we are the ultimate authority, not the government. That if you break the law you pay the penalty. That justice is blind and no one is above it. They should believe that we have a right to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness, but there is no guarantee of equal results. We do not "Share the Wealth", just the opportunity. That we work hard for what we have and we will share it with who we want to. Government cannot force me to be charitable. That it is not un-American for me to disagree with authority or to share my personal opinion. And finally, the government works for me. We do not answer to them, they answer to us.
We know that Steve Fisher believes in these principles and those of our "Founding Fathers". Steve is also very active in the community. He is the past President of the Cochranton Music Boosters; is on the Board of the Crawford Area Scholarship Committee; serves on the leadership team for the International Referral Network (business organization); is a member of the Meadville Sertoma Club; serves on the Meadville-Western Crawford County Chamber of Commerce Golf Committee; teaches Sunday School at Grace United Methodist Church (Meadville); and has volunteered for numerous other organizations and events. He is also an approved instructor for teaching Continuing Education courses to Pennsylvania insurance agents. He is the son of an Army officer who graduated in 1976 from Fairview High School (Erie County) and received his Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from Gannon University (Erie County) in 1980. Steve obtained his Life and Health insurance license in 1980 upon graduation from Gannon, and made the decision to remain in northwest Pennsylvania to raise his family. He has resided in Cochranton, PA (Crawford County) for the past 17 years with his wife Carole, who teaches First Grade. He has three children and one grandson.
We are so tired of our elected leaders lying to us. Their moral depravity makes us so ashamed. If we continue to elect these type of leaders, our country will continue its downward spiral into a decadent abyss.
So, we owe it to ourselves, our families, and our country to elect leaders who realize that we will not settle for less than real leadership and that they will have to provide genuine direction because it is the best path toward election. All are invited to climb on board Steve's campaign wagon. You will be glad you did! You may learn more, volunteer and donate on Steve's website or contact Steve directly at:

Steven M. Fisher
3rd District Congressional
Candidate 2010 Facebook: Steve Fisher for Congress
P.O. Box 1404
Meadville, PA 16335
(814) 724-0914

Al Kiser - District Coordinator of "The Patriotic Resistance"

Anonymous said...

You caught the Dave King slip correctly. As soon as I heard that Jon Hopcraft was Mike Kelly's campaign rep, I smelled the incumbent, insider GOP circle at work. Jon was the McCain campaign rep in Erie. He is one of the young GOP workers who floats around, doing as told by the GOP incumbents and allies. During the McCain campaign, he was told not to cooperate with our "tea party" Hermitage McCain Center, and that is how bad it is still. I saw plenty of it to nauseate me ad infinitem at the county and state level, including our own GOP elected officials' back-room deals with Dem elected officials. The GOP is bloated with long-time incumbents who constrain and control as much as they can, via county chairs such as King.