Apparently the state GOP is considering a straw poll here in PA to officially determine which way the wind is blowing in the presidential primary. [HT Grassroots PA, although it is a Drobnyk piece in The Morning Call]
I imagine this has something to do with the fact that every GOP presidential candidate that beat the Pennsylvania bushes for ducats last week found the response underwhelming. Except, of course, Rudy Giuliani. I also imagine they want to encourage candidates to pay attention to the state despite the fact our primary currently will be a political vestigial tail taking place in April.
Interestingly, the reason the primary may not move up from April is because the state GOP is against it, as that will make it more difficult for them unseat new democrat incumbents in state elections. See this older post from Tony Phyrillas on exactly why that is. I suppose the state GOP wants the best of both worlds: Attention from presidential candidates while simultaneously protecting their best interests locally. I still need to learn more about this before forming a completely coherent opinion.
Charlie Roberts, GOP committeeman and activist from Bethlehem Township, said he felt a straw poll would give “the average guy a chance” to have his voice heard in the primary process if the state GOP is successful in persuading all of us it is a bad idea to move up our presidential primary. If by “average guy” he means the state GOP leadership, I guess he’s right. If he means “nobody bloggers who pay far more attention to politics than most people but have no political connections and no money with which to make political donations” then I believe he may be mistaken.
I am open to learning in more detail why moving up our primary is a bad idea as it relates to promoting the conservative agenda on a local basis. But even if I were convinced I would still be disappointed as I have never in my life cast a vote that matters in a presidential primary. As a politically engaged conservative this stings. I have never, ever been all that thrilled with GOP presidential nominations post-Reagan, and I am too young to have ever voted for him anyway.