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Ralston’s Favorite “Prominent” Tea Party Leader

Liberal blogger Jon Ralston burped up another of his patented anti-Nevada Republican Party rants on Wednesday, tweeting the following…

“Prominent Tea Party leader blasts NV GOP for primary endorsements, suggests party is shooting itself in foot.”

Oh, my.  This sounds bad, doesn’t it?

“The Tea Party has arrived in the form of a group that has much more credibility to be anti-Establishment than anyone in this debate,” Ralston frothed in a follow up on his blog (because he no longer has a real newspaper column in, you know, a real newspaper).  “This is not an Establishment front; this is the real Tea Party deal.”

Really?  Let’s see…

The “prominent” tea party leader Ralston is referring to is Roger Stockton.

What?  Never heard of him?  Not surprising.  I checked his Twitter account.  He has all of 37 followers.  And the last of his 17 tweets was almost a year ago, while the last blog post on his organization’s website is dated August 13, 2013.

Yeah, real prominent.

And it’s more than a bit hypocritical for Mr. Stockton to maintain that the Nevada GOP shouldn’t endorse candidates in primaries when his own Western Representation PAC…endorses candidates in primaries!

Oops.

Why is it that people who are already endorsing in primaries – such as Gov. Brian Sandoval (R&R-Advertising) and Sen. “Moderate Mike” Roberson – are opposed to the Republican Party itself doing the same thing that everybody else is doing?

There’s more…but first, let me make it clear I only looked into this organization and am reporting what I found to refute Ralston’s simpleminded argument that a letter from Mr. Stockton – whose PAC is registered in Arizona, by the way – telling the Nevada Republican Party what to do is somehow significant.

It’s about as significant as Sue Wagner leaving the party.

Who?

Exactly.

Again, Ralston is trying to make it seem ground-breaking and earth-shattering that this “prominent” tea party “leader” is opposing the Nevada GOP endorsement process.  But truth be told, even though I know of Stockton and his PAC, I can’t tell you that they are active in Nevada’s conservative movement.

On the other hand, I know what Vicki Dooling and her tea party organization are doing.  They meet every month.  And I know what Connie Foust and her tea party group are doing.  They meet every month, too.  Even that crazy Cathie Lynn Y’all Profant-et.al.-Gizi meets on a regular basis under the tea party banner.

But Roger Stockton and the Western Representation PAC?  No idea.

I also checked out the PAC’s FEC filing for last year.  Granted, I just did a cursory review, but it looks like the PAC raised less than $80,000 last year…and most of it appears to have gone to paying vendors and contractors and unidentified employees.

In addition, a member of the GOP Central Committee who looked into the organization’s reports sent me the following…

“Thought you might find this interesting…for 2011-12, just under a million bucks raised, of which $755,000 went to operating expenses. They did toss out $100K or so to committees and independent expenditures, but I think if I gave money to this group, knowing that only 10 cents on the dollar went to the cause I’d be a little pissed.  I don’t have time to walk through the expenses to see how much the Stocktons made, or through the expenditures to see what candidates actually got some $, but on the surface, Stockton’s set up a nice little election year money machine…”

If the Western Representation PAC is indeed “prominent,” it’s only because they appear to be extremely aggressive at online fundraising, not in actual political operations and organizing in Nevada.

But let’s get to Mr. Stockton’s letter – which, though addressed to the Executive Board of the Nevada Republican Party, was instead sent to the state’s #2 liberal blogger.

What’s that tell you about this guy?

No, seriously.  If this guy had a problem with endorsements, why didn’t he pick up the phone and call the party chairman instead of leaking a letter to a liberal blogger?  Makes you wonder what the ulterior motive is here.

Anyway, according to Mr. Stockton, adopting a pre-primary endorsement process “is unnecessary because we already have a process in place to endorse candidates: it’s called a primary, and the will of our voters is the imprimatur of legitimacy.”

This is, of course, the stupidest argument possible – and naturally one that Ralston endorses with all his heart.

The primary isn’t the endorsement process.  The primary is the NOMINATION process.

And regardless of whether or not the party endorses – the way Stockton, Sandoval, Roberson, et. al., do – the voters will STILL have the final word.  This takes absolutely NOTHING away from Republican voters.  Nothing.

Stockton continued, “If the party wants to anoint its preferred candidate, it might as well do away with the primary altogether and select its nominee outright.”

Actually, that’s EXACTLY what the Utah Republican Party does.  Their nominees are selected at the party convention unless a candidate fails to get a super-majority vote of the delegates.  Then, and only then, do the rank-and-file GOP voters get a chance to vote in a primary election.

So, um, the Nevada GOP’s decision to simply issue pre-primary endorsements – the way many other party organizations, Democrat and Republican alike, do – isn’t radical at all.

Stockton concluded his whine with this: “Compromise is a part of politics, and a middle ground will have to be forged.”

Spoken like a true sellout.

No wonder Ralston loves this guy…whoever he is.