Thursday, March 25, 2010

The Utah County Republican Party made $22,000 of anti-healthcare money, but will use it to fight the ethics reform initiative

The Daily Herald reports that the Utah County GOP made more than $22,000 in donations Tuesday night at the local precinct caucuses. There were record numbers of attendees at most precincts (3-4 times the 2008 total in my precinct), and many were attending their first caucus to express their displeasure at the Washington establishment and the passing of the comprehensive Democrat healthcare bill. Utah County Republican Chair,Taylor Oldroyd, affirmed the same reasoning in the article above:
"It's frustration with what's going on in Washington," Oldroyd said. "The health care debate -- perfect timing for the Republican Party."

That passion was readily channeled into record donations. Unfortunately, if any of those new caucus goers pay attention to what their money will be used for, they will find that a large chunk of that money will not be used on anything remotely related to national healthcare, combatting the Democratic Party, or even Bob Bennett's Senate race. Instead, it will be used to promote and print distortions and untruths about the ethics initiative and those gathering signatures to place it on the ballot. The county and state parties have announced that they will expend resources both to persuade petition signers to remove their names (Ironically, their plan is to use fabricated and misinterpreted "secret" effects of the proposal in order to accuse the signature gathers of deceiving those who signed the petition.) and to campaign against the measure if it makes it onto the ballot in November.

So the party leadership and incumbent legislators will channel the enthusiasm and grassroots energy of these new political participants to protect the position of incumbents, to protect their uncapped source of "no strings attached," multi-thousand dollar donations from lobbyists and special interest groups, and to allow Howard Stephenson to continue to earn his living by advancing his clients' causes in the legislature. National politics makes everyone cynical because everyone hears about it. State and county politics make everyone cynical who is paying attention.

Please go read up on the Utahns for Ethical Government voter initiative. Then use the contact information on the site to sign a physical petition and make a difference.


JBT said...

I want to thank you for the time you spend studying these issues and posting the facts for all to see.

There are many of us who agree with your take on things. Keep up the good work.

AH said...

Would you provide a reference on the Utah County GOP announcment that they will expend a large chunk of caucus donations to fight the ethics petition, specifically to get people to remove their signatures? Thanks.

UtahTeacher said...

Sorry for the delay AH. The county party has already put up on their website the intent to expend resources and convince people to remove their names.

The large article in the center of the front page of their website ( has invited Republicans to find out the "truth" about the ethics initiative for months, featuring a link to the ironically lie-filled website. There you can print one of 6 prepared versions of the 11 false and hyperbolic anti-initiative talking points, sign up as an opponent, access instructions on how to remove your name, and volunteer in the effort. If the initiative ends up with enough signatures today (frankly, I only give it a 30% chance of that), the county party will immediately begin the campaign, including spending money on fliers, forms, phone calls, possibly mailers or door knockers, etc.