Friday, November 30, 2012

Mooney Spent MDGOP Resources on Candidate Who Left Party After Winning Election



According to a report in the Cecil Times blog, Cecil County’s newly elected, County Executive, Tari Moore changed her party affiliation on Thursday afternoon from Republican to unaffiliated.  

Moore is Cecil County’s first ever executive under the new charter government, approved by voters in 2010.

Moore sent an email to the Cecil Times stating:

"Today I filed with the County Board of Elections to change my voter affiliation to one who is unaffiliated with any political party.
"I have done so only after long and careful consideration, and because I believe that the best interests of all Cecil County citizens should outweigh my own personal preferences in this matter.”
An official with the Cecil County Board of Elections confirmed Moore's switch.

Moore stated she would explain her party switch after she is sworn in on Monday.
During the election, the Maryland Republican Party sent a mailer officially supporting Moore and two other candidates for county council, Robert Hodge and Alan McCarthy.
Moore is vacating her seat on the current board of commissioners to take the county executive spot.  Under the new charter government, the county council would select Moore's replacement from a list of three names provided by the Cecil County Republican Central Committee.  However, Moore's switch to unaffiliated creates some controversy.  

The new county charter requires the county council to appoint a replacement by majority vote, and if the member vacating the office is a member of a political party, then the council must select from a list of three candidates provided by that party's central committee.  Moore's switch cuts out the Cecil County Republican Central Committee out the process.  Also, as explained by the Cecil Times factional politics in the council would most likely result in a deadlocked vote on Moore's replacement.  Then, according, the the charter, if the council does not appoint a replacement within thirty days, Moore as county executive would get to name her replacement.  Given her switch to unaffiliated, there is no guarantee Moore would select a Republican to replace her. 

Andy Harris, Nancy Jacobs, and several conservative and Republican organizations all endorsed Moore during the primary.
Congratulations Alex Mooney, you spent state party resources supporting a candidate who ended up leaving the Republican party, and embarrassing a lot of people, after she was elected, losing what would have been a Republican controlled county government. 

Looks like Mooney found a way to snatch defeat from one of the rare victories Republicans could claim this election cycle. 


MDGOP Cecil County Mailer

9 comments:

Constructive Conservative said...

Does seem to be a bit ungrateful now, doesn't it?

Perhaps there is more to the story?

Bruce Robinson said...

How does Chairman Mooney get slathered with the blame for this? As State Party Chair he wasn't alone in deciding which candidates would receive support. No one had any clue that she would un-affiliate. Every indication was that she was a Republican, elected more than once.

Your blaming Mooney is like Obama blaming Bush.

cecil said...

In the convoluted world of Cecil County politics, Moore's action was really an internecine fight within the local GOP, not a repudiation of the state or national Republican party.

A faction controlled by Del. Smigiel and Sen. Pipkin have tied the county government in knots for two years and they would have continued to do so under the new Charter government if they controlled the selection of a Council member to fill Moore's old seat.

So her action was more a matter of declaring independence from Smigiel/Pipkin; everyone expects her to re-affiliate with the Republican party in a few months when the dust settles on the process to fill the council seat.

We're sure most of this is strange to non-Cecil County residents. But then, Cecil County is a VERY strange place!

cecil said...

In the convoluted world of Cecil County politics, Moore's action was really an internecine fight within the local GOP, not a repudiation of the state or national Republican party.

A faction controlled by Del. Smigiel and Sen. Pipkin have tied the county government in knots for two years and they would have continued to do so under the new Charter government if they controlled the selection of a Council member to fill Moore's old seat. (Smigiel and Pipkin fought against Charter because it would limit their power over the local government under the county commissioners system.)

So her action was more a matter of declaring independence from Smigiel/Pipkin; everyone expects her to re-affiliate with the Republican party in a few months when the dust settles on the process to fill the council seat.

We're sure most of this is strange to non-Cecil County residents. But then, Cecil County is a VERY strange place.

Martin Watcher said...

Mark, do you really expect the State Party to ignore the choice of the local Republicans and support someone other than the person they selected?

The job of the Central Committee and State Party is to support and help elect those that are chosen by the voters during the primary. Getting involved in Primaries, or sitting out the General because the favored candidate didn't win is outrageous.

This is on Moore alone.

Mark Newgent said...

MW,

What other local race did MDGOP spend resources on, send out mailers? Mooney used state party resources to interject on behalf of the Andy Harris' hand picked candidates. Odd for a chairman who we have on record saying the state party shouldn't be dictating in local matters.

Martin Watcher said...

Mark,

At the point that she won the primary, it stopped becoming an issue of the State Party getting involved in a local matter and became the State Party supporting THE OVERWHELMING REPUBLICAN candidate in a close race to lead a growing County. To ignore the nominee, who won by 30% points because Pipkin and Smigiel wanted someone else who was routed in the Primary would be a greater loss, especially had the race ended the other way without that support. You need to look at the spending on Moore in the context of when the money was spent. After she dominated the primary over Pipkin and Smigiel's person, Mooney spent the money. If the State Party isn't using it's funds to support candidates, then why is it raising money at all?

Martin Watcher said...

Also, there were only 2 local partisan elections in Maryland, the other being the City of Hagerstown where the Democrats blew the Republicans away by 15%. Of course, good ol' union loving Don Munson won a seat on the city council as the only Republican to come close.

Bob Amato said...


Brian, your use of the words “fraudulent, delegitimizing, corrupt, reprehensible, disgrace, unfit” is stunning when you admit that you do not know Moore or nothing of the local “intraparty squabble at work here”. Martin Watcher is correct that she won 30% of the vote in a large field. The vote was 2-1 over her nearest competitor, Commissioner Broomell, a former legislative aide to Delegate Smigiel, as is Commissioner Broomell. Chris Zeauskas ran on a slate funded by Senator Pipkin , along with Commissioners Mullin and Dunn. During the general election, Friends of EJ Pipkin funded a series of scurrilous mailers against Commissioner Hodge and Tari Moore. They were even more disgusting than the one against Delegate Sossi. We all know that Senator Pipkin was “disappointed ” to have not replaced Congressman Gilchrest, so the anti-Harris rant is what it is and has nothing to do with Moore’s decision. Is the story unfolding? Chris Zeauskas began his resolution explanation with an outright lie, stating that she must now choose an Unaffiliated replacement. Article 2, Section 209 (c) and (d) of the Cecil County Charter states that the Council makes the choice and the Executive selects only if they (four Republicans) can’t agree. When you say that… “Moore, and not any elected representatives of the party which helped catapult her to her will decide who replaces her on the Cecil County Council and deny the people a voice, a point clearly made in the statement of Cecil County GOP Chairman Chris Zeauskas” it shows that you “had the wool pulled over your eyes” by him. As a Cecil County Delegate, I spoke against the resolution at the convention and was available if you had chosen to interview me. I would have provided the previous information as well the following facts: life-long Republican, campaign manager for a successful GOP candidate, past President of the Republican Club of Cecil County. Settling scores and retaining power have been the actions of Smigiel, Pipkin, and their minions for the past two years. Enough is enough. Relentless vicious attacks against those not 100% on their side is the reason that it is difficult to recruit candidates.

ShareThis