Tuesday, June 23, 2015

My final thoughts as parting Chair of the Davis County Republican Party

Dear Davis County Republicans,
Thank you for entrusting me to be your chair the last two years.   I have worked hard, along with the executive and central committee to promote, strengthen, and grow our party in Davis County.
I commit my support to your new DCRP Chair, Rob Anderson.  I will do all I can to help him become acclimated to the job. I appreciate his positive comments during his campaign speech, and I trust that he will work hard to continue the course that we have laid out over the past two years.
During the last two years, I have helped raise nearly $72,000 for the DCRP, among the highest in the State, and I am leaving the DCRP in great shape financially.
I am pleased to know that we elected and re-elected ALL Republicans in Davis County last year.  We also sent three new Republican legislators to the State House of Representatives.
I want to personally thank Brady Jugler, our party Secretary, and Joe Levi, Vice Chair, for the many hours creating and improving our new website, and Facebook, Twitter and Google+ presence.  This has allowed the DCRP to move into the 21st century.
Brady was also the brainchild behind our new DCRP Delegate Database System. This system allowed us to maintain our County and State Delegates within the DCRP, and not make us dependent on the UTGOP.
Our attendance at the 2014 nominating convention was among the highest in the State, and our recent organizing convention Saturday May 16, 2015 was also among the highest attended in the State.
As your Chair and a member of the State Central Committee, I worked hard to promote the Caucus Convention System.  I believe that it is the best system in the country to find, vet, elect, and hold politicians accountable to the people. There is no wonder that Utah has received national and even international accolades for the many successes in our State.  Neither I, nor you, would be involved at this level if not for the Caucus System.
I was very pleased to see the DCRP delegates overwhelmingly approve a resolution last Saturday, reaffirming our support for the Caucus System, and thanking the Central Committee, and the Executive Committee for their strong support of the Caucus over the last two years.  Davis County has truly been a leader in the State in support of our great Caucus System.
As your Party Chair I followed the direction of the DCRP Central Committee, the governing body, which passed a resolution in January of 2014 sustaining and supporting the Caucus Convention System.
Our candidate vetting system of neighborhood elections was attacked by the cleverly titled “Count My Vote” initiative. If this initiative had become law it would have created a path around our caucus system that would have allowed candidates to go directly to a primary without ever having to speak to a delegate.  If approved, it would have stripped the Party of its constitutional right to “choose a candidate selection process that will in its view produce the nominee who best represents its political platform” as stated by US Supreme Court Justice Scalia.
The Utah Legislature, in an effort to stop the CMV initiative, enacted SB54 – a law that most of them said they had to “hold their nose” when they voted for it.
I do not resent our legislators for passing SB54.  In fact, I applaud their effort to attempt to stop the threat of CMV.  Unfortunately, this bad piece of legislation goes further than CMV by creating an open primary where “Unaffiliated” voters can vote in our Republican Primary and help to choose OUR Republican candidate!
Like you, I don’t want NON-REPUBLICANS choosing my Republican candidate!  This is why the UTGOP is suing the State of Utah, to defend its Constitutional right to choose its own candidate selection process.
As your Party Chair, I was fair and always willing to listen to and even encourage people to share their thoughts and opinions, even if they were not popular or in line with the Party’s position. I believe that healthy dialog helps everyone make up his or her minds.
During the Central Committee Meeting last January, a woman interrupted me as I was speaking about a resolution in support of the Caucus Convention System.  She yelled from the middle of the auditorium that I should allow the Count My Vote supporters to present their side.  I invited her to the podium to take some of my time, and present her argument for CMV. After some coaxing, I finally got her to come to the podium.  I allowed her to speak for several minutes.  After introducing herself she said, “I believe that we need to do away with the caucus system because it is not representative of the people.”  In addition, she later added, “I am for Count My Vote.”
Afterwards, I shook her hand and thanked her for her courage to speak in behalf of what she believed.  The resolution to support the Caucus Convention was approved overwhelmingly, just like the new resolution presented at the Organizing convention last Saturday May 16th, 2015.  I allowed this woman to speak at the January 2014 Central Committee even though her comments were in opposition of the majority of the central committee of the DCRP.  Her name is Elaine Oaks.
There were some inaccurate comments made by some of the candidates at the organizing convention last Saturday.  They followed a theme of attacking the Party officers for those who claim that they did not receive notification regarding the convention.  Although I do not dispute that some may not have received email or even a post card, the Party is at the mercy of the information it is given by the delegates and the precinct officers. The party has no way of knowing that someone is not receiving notification, if the individual does not notify the Party.  I would encourage each of you to make sure that your contact information is always up to date.  Remember to contact the Party if you change your email address or phone number.
After the convention, I checked with our Constant Contact program and verified that both Elaine Oaks and Heather Gardner did in fact receive notification of the DCRP convention starting with the initial email on March 25th at 9:38 PM. To make sure that both were receiving and seeing email at the addresses used in the DCRP database, I sent each an email last Sunday to the same address, and each responded to me.
I do not dispute that do to human error, some may have been dropped or not added correctly to our system. However, it is not accurate to assume that if someone did or does not receive email that they have somehow been singled out, or that the Party has been negligent in its efforts to make proper notice of important events.
Over the last two years the DCRP has made proper notice to every important event.  The overwhelming crowds of nearly 98.7% attendance at our Nominating convention should make it clear that the Party has actually done a great job notifying delegates about our conventions.
It has been an honor to serve the last two years as your Chair of the Republican Party in Davis County. I can honestly this has not been an easy job, but, I have always told my children that nothing in life worth anything comes easy.  I have found that strength comes from standing firm with your convictions and never compromising your principles.
I recently heard a great man say, “We will all face fear, experience ridicule, and meet opposition.  Let us, all of us, have the courage to stand for principle.  Courage, not compromise, brings the smile of God’s approval.” Thomas S. Monson
Thank you Davis County Republican Party!  I look forward to supporting the new party officers as we continue to promote the conservative values of the Republican Party.
Phill Wright

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