Ask your questions, raise your concerns- NOT at this townhall

Republican LABy Michael Greer


I’ve been to dozens of Townhalls in the last few months and none of them were organized by Republicans. So, I was pleased when I saw that the Republicans were having a Townhall.


My understanding of Townhalls is that they provide an opportunity for our Representatives to inform constituents of what is happening and their positions on issues, and for citizens to question, support or oppose them. Our Constitution provides for citizens to redress their grievances to their representatives. I’m always amused when people thank their representatives for coming to the Townhall. It’s the official’s JOB. We elect them to represent us and it is their JOB to come back from Sacramento or Washington and tell us that they are doing there.

“Republican Solutions for California” This Townhall  was not a Townhall.  Nor was it what they advertised, a “dialogue, not a lecture.”  The flyer said: “Ask your questions, Raise your concerns.”  However, they didn’t have an open mic for people to ask questions or raise concerns. They required people to write questions on cards.  The Left does this all the time because they can pick the questions to ask. I expected better from Republicans. By the time everyone had spoken there was only time for a few questions. This was more of a candidates forum than a Townhall.

Chairman Mark Vafiades and RNHA presentations (source

Shawn Steel, RNC National Committeeman, spoke first. I like Shawn and for the most part, I liked what he said. He had a power point presentation and, showed a picture of high-rises planned for San Francisco. He explained that One Bay Area Plan’s goal was to move everyone into high-rises close to public transportation. I was a little disappointed that he didn’t call it what it is, Agenda 21, but, at least, he talked about it and condemned it. He also gave us some good news. The primary season will be cut from nine months to five months. The Convention will be at the beginning of the summer, not the end. This is important because the party can’t spend money until after the Convention .  This allowed Obama to run anti-Romney ads for months before Republicans could counter them. And there will be fewer debates, although he didn’t say anything about who would moderate them.

Next Robert Huff, State Senate minority leader spoke. In my opinion, he is a typical establishment RINO. He talked e about how important it was to elect candidates with an “R” after their names. He said we have to, at least, end the two thirds Democratic majority in Sacramento. While I agree, I have to ask what good it will do if Republicans vote with Democrats. Right now there are 37 Republicans in the California legislature who support amnesty.  If amnesty is passed Republicans will never end the  Democrat majority.  In fact, we will lose more seats.  In a few months, Latinos would become the majority in California. If amnesty is passed their majority will grow geometrically. Republicans might as well go home. Huff gave some examples of Republicans whose opinions we might not agree with. Who supported driver’s licenses for illegals and the Dream Act. He explained that these Republicans had to represent their constituents, and that’s what their constituents wanted. My reply to that would be, yes, they have to represent their constituents if being re-elected is their goal. But if what is best for the state and the country is their goal, they need to support what will accomplish that. Their constituents may be more concerned with abundant social services than the Rule of Law. I think most Conservatives want candidates who care more about saving our state and country than getting re-elected.

Hilton100There was a lot of talk about “reaching out to minorities.”  Several of the speakers spoke about what the party was doing to attract minorities.  Erroll Valladares, State Chair of the RNHA, outlined how his group was planning activities in the Latino community. Other speakers addressed the numerous Asians who had been hired or appointed to various positions in the party and about the various Asian and Latino Republicans running for office. The elephant in the room (photo- left) was that there was not a word mentioned about the Black community or what was being done to include them.

The event ran very long and people started leaving well before there were any questions asked. I have to give Gary Aminoff  credit, he did choose some pointed questions. In fact, the first one was mine (I didn’t think they’d read any of the several  I wanted addressed). I asked why there were so many Republicans in our state legislature who supported amnesty. Several of the candidates gave replies, but it was a lot of political spin about the reality of them being here.  The final question was allowed directly from the audience. My friend, Keith Hardine, asked if the Republican policies are so similar to Democrat policies  what difference does it make which party we vote for.


Michael Greer is the co-organizer of the Santa Monica Tea Party and the Los Angeles Tea Party, on the board of directors of the Citizens’ Alliance for Property Rights and was a member of the Republican Central Committee for the 41st Assembly District. 


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