‘The Kootenai County Republican Party needs to be a big tent party’ say the critics. They claim that our Republican party is not diverse enough but then THEY go on to say that others on the central committee don’t share THEIR views and that the committee does not talk enough about the issues that are important to THEM. They complain that the Central Committee has Republican members that are also conservative, or Christian, or working class or…<GASP>…Libertarian! Oh the humanity! As one critic lamented “Why do THOSE people have to be here.”
Who are these critics? They are self-described progressives, deep state RINOs, Democrats, devout “Never Trumpers,” members of the media and even a fired community college professor who claims a PhD in “Gossip” (seriously, is that even a thing).
So really this is not about diversity at all. It is about the Republican Party not being an echo chamber full of people exactly like them. One self-identified progressive resigned from the central committee because they claimed they were faced with opinions where they did not agree on topics that were not important to them. The critics fail to understand the very essence of diversity, of having a “Big Tent,” is that there will be diversity of opinions and of priorities. To turn away from diversity and go off to seek only like-minded individuals is the hallmark of a closed mind.
The critics go on to imagine a convoluted conspiracy that has been operating to shift the Kootenai County Republican Party to the right. Has the party shifted toward conservative policies of lower taxation, lower regulation and greater prosperity? Yes it has, but for the simple reason that in the last 10 years over 1,000 state and federal partisan seats nationwide have flipped from Democrat to Republican. The entire country has moved to the right, no doubt in reaction to the failure of progressive policies like Obamacare, so it should be no surprise that Kootenai County reflects the national trend.
Kootenai County has 70 precincts which means 70 precinct committeemen campaigns. The idea that a small group could take a majority of these elections against the will of the residents is silly. The Republican Central Committee has the most accurate cross section of Kootenai County voters of any political organization because there are about 600 voters in each of the 70 precincts who directly elect their representative committeeman.
The truth is that according to an October 2017 scientific poll (3.7 percent margin of error), Donald Trump’s approval rating among North Idaho Republican voters is over 92 percent, which includes over 76 percent that STRONGLY APPROVE. Less than 7 percent disapprove of our President. Also, 53 percent of registered voters are affiliated Republicans, 38 percent are unaffiliated and only 9 percent are Democrats.
The reality of these demographics has caused Democrats, progressives, members of the Lyin’ Media and RINOs to be in a deep state of denial. They self-affirm that anyone who agrees with them is “reasonable” and everyone with a different opinion is a “whackadoodle” or a “LIAR.”
The real whackadoodles and liars are those who present fake news and gossip as journalism, or the federally elected officials that call to “take out” the President, or the fascists who use violence to close down free speech while calling themselves “Anti-Fascists”, or the members of the liberal elite who applauded a pantomimed assassination.
I invite my fellow members of the Kootenai County Republican Central Committee and all Idaho Republicans to take a moment and reflect on how Trump opponents have been reduced to name calling and muttering about elaborate fictions. While they may be on their heels, they are not defeated. President Trump cannot drain the swamp alone. We need to do our part in the coming election in May because Making America Great Again Begins in Idaho!
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Brent Regan is a Kootenai County resident.