2022 CAGOP Convention: Renewed Optimism for California Republicans

A variety of factors are encouraging many California Republicans that 2022 will bring a tide of Republican wins this year

The 2022 CAGOP Convention opened in Anaheim on Friday.

During the first day candidates, delegates, guests and others said one word more than most: Optimism. Amid California facing worsening crime rates, a stagnating state government, low voter turnout, high gas prices, a higher cost of living, a housing shortage, wildfires, strangled businesses, more people leaving the state, California public schools losing students, and a whole host of other problems, those in the GOP are seeing 2022 as the first time in quite a long time that Republicans are able to start to come back in the state.

And not only that, but many are pointing at setting up ways for a stronger future party.

A need for greater voter turnout was brought up by many at the Convention. “In California it’s about getting voter to give a damn,” said Mike Netter, the Campaign Supervisor for Attorney General Candidate Eric Early. “During the 2020 Presidential election, LA County had a record number of people vote for president. But the Attorney General race had only just over half that. Over a  million people failed to check a box three races down.”

Netter, as well as many others, noted that turnout is high when candidates or Propositions stand out, but not so on other races.

Signage at the 2022 CAGOP Convention (Photo: Evan Symon for California Globe)

“A lot of people came out for propositions they cared about,” remarked one delegate to the Globe. “Prop. 16, the affirmative action one, comes to mind. A lot of people thought that would be a shoo-in because of how previous races went for turnout, but a lot of impassioned people came out and defeated Prop 16 handily. And that’s a big message: vote. Don’t just select the races and props you want then junk the rest. A lot of the largest decisions are made in some of the most local offices.”

“2020 had the largest turnout since 1952 in the state. That’s great. But that doesn’t mean anything if voters are only voting on one or two races. So it’s big that Republican candidates and their teams bring out the vote too.”

Netter also added that focus should also go to smaller races with important and powerful positions at stake, such as city leadership and the Attorney General, rather than just the bigger races.

“I challenge you to ask 10 people on the street who our current Attorney General is,” said Netter. “You’ll get one if you’re lucky. And they don’t realize just how important the Attorney General choice actually is.”

Increased diversity in the GOP

Another major point stressed by many at the convention, and one that many are proud to relate, is the rapidly increasing diversity of both the party and party candidates.

“For years, the GOP has held this stigma of being mainly white, maybe with a few Asian candidates, and only a few women,” explained Sharon, a convention guest to the Globe on Friday. “It’s not true, but that was what people thought. Look now. The worsening political climate and the natural diversification of California itself has drawn so many to the GOP that it can’t be ignored now. Not just race-wise either. A lot of women are running. The California GOP is actually making the Democrats look like the less diverse ones now.”

Tito, a volunteer for the Anthony Trimino for Governor campaign added, “California has a 38% Latino population. In a generation, it will be over half. Some Latinos, they hear of a candidate being a conservative Republican, they don’t want to hear it. But when I tell them that they are Cuban-Mexican, they’ll come back to listen.”

Multiple candidates and volunteers related stories that highlighted how conservative many Latinos are, especially those that are second generation or older.

“Those that initially come here don’t have much love for Republicans because they see them as the ones trying to bring them back or putting up walls to keep them out,” noted a volunteer for a County Republican Party. “But once in and established, you have business owners, heavy Catholics with strong abortion stances, and others who find a lot to like about the GOP. They’re a big part of the future of the GOP, and it’s already showing.”

A growing number of candidates and supporters have also been coming from the African American community, a longtime stronghold for the Democratic Party. Among those challenging Democratic candidates this June in the primaries are Allison Pratt, who hopes to take on Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) in the 43rd and Joe Collins, a Navy Veteran  taking on Ted Lieu (D-CA) in the 36th.

“We need to listen to our communities,” stressed Collins. “The cost of living, gas prices, affording a place to live. That is affecting every Californian regardless of other differences.”

Others noted the strong, if not majority, female presence within the GOP in recent years, with many Republican women entering races at all levels, including Jenny Rae Le Roux for Governor.

“I came out to California with nothing but my belongings inside a Honda,” said Le Roux. “And now I’m a California Mom making a difference. California is a diversifying state. My son here is in a Charter school with Spanish classes, and there is Newsom in Sacramento with his children in private schools. He’s out of touch on the situation.”

Le Roux, Pratt, and others also took pride in the “Mom” title, saying multiple times in interviews that they are Moms running for higher office.

“A lot of women  are really going for the ‘Mom’ part of their lives, and it’s a pretty strong connection for many,” continued Sharon. “A lot of women know that mothers can handle a lot, and men know who really run things. I can see why so many are pushing it this year.”

Many Californian Republicans eye a comeback

Finally, candidates are being a lot more flexible in terms of where they fall ideologically, with many focusing on the economy, crime, cost of living, as well as other important subjects not brought up by other parties.

2022 CAGOP Convention floor (Photo: Evan Symon for California Globe)

Eric Early, a candidate for Attorney General, noted the failure of Governor Gavin Newsom and Attorney General Rob Bonta in multiple investigations and not looking into many others.

“I would investigate state entities big time. I would investigate the EDD losing $30 billion. I would investigate the no-bid contracts Newsom okayed. I would look into the alliance of the California Teacher’s Association (CTA) and Newsom.”

“In 2018 we had an Attorney General candidate debate, but so far this year we have had no debate. We need to debate these people. We need to question why they have not investigated these problems with the state.”

Candidates themselves also went into how the shift away from a solely moderate stance has allowed many new candidates to enter races.

Click here to read the full article at the California Globe

GOP ramps up effort to repeal California gas tax increase


As reported by CBS8.com:

Republicans’ latest effort to repeal California’s upcoming gas tax increase got a boost Wednesday from members of Congress and GOP gubernatorial candidate John Cox, who said he would spend “significant” money to help put the initiative on next year’s ballot.

“We can’t keep making this state unaffordable for working people and expect people to stay,” Cox said at a news conference at the California Republican Party’s headquarters.

It’s the second Republican initiative aimed at repealing the tax increase, passed by lawmakers this year to generate $52 billion over 10 years for road and bridge repairs. The gas tax will go up by 12 cents per gallon in November, and diesel taxes will spike as well. The other repeal effort is backed by Assemblyman Travis Allen — Cox’s competitor for the Republican gubernatorial nomination. Both initiatives aim to repeal the tax increase, but the Cox-backed effort will also include a constitutional amendment that requires any future gas and car tax increases to win voter approval.

Republicans view the tax increase as a highly unpopular move that will draw voters from across California to the polls in the midterm election. Democrats plan to aggressively target seven California Republicans who serve in districts that voted Democratic in the presidential election. …

Click here to read the full article

The Republican Party Legislative Incompetence


Let me preface this piece by stating no party better encapsulate the values and policies – unfortunately not today’s actions – that have made America the greatest nation in the history of mankind than today’s Republican Party. It was my great honor to be elected to the recent California Republican Party Presidential Platform Committee in 2014 and I was stunned by what came out of the committee – a document that was about economic growth, limited government, families, protecting the unborn, religious freedom and overall prosperity in all facets of life for all Americans and immigrants – legal or otherwise.

Chad MayesThe party of Lincoln and Reagan, the party that fought against slavery, the KKK, and overwhelmingly voted for the Civil Rights Act and Voting Rights Act is at a crossroads … and it has nothing to do with President Donald Trump. The party has lost its way – the national party and more importantly the California Republican Party – epitomized by Republican Assembly Leader Chad Mayes who just supported huge tax increases while never thinking about the awful fiscal outlook for California. Moreover, Minority Leader Hayes has a complete lack of understanding for how California and the United States thrive in our dangerous, geopolitical world.

The best way to describe the disarray of the national Republican Party that bleeds down to the CPR is a recent comment by Pennsylvania Republican Senator Pat Toomey. He had a candid response at a Town Hall when local ABC27 News Anchor Dennis Owens asked about the Republican struggles with the failed repeal of Obamacare and overall health care reform. Senator Toomey said:

“Look, I didn’t expect Donald Trump to win, I think most of my colleagues didn’t, so we didn’t expect to be in this situation.”

After seven years of railing against President Obama and the Democratic Party, the Republican Party had nothing to show for the over 60 times they voted in Congress to repeal or replace Obamacare led by the ineptitude of Senator John McCain. People voted for a repeal of Obama’s health care law, tax and regulation cuts to bolster the economy, American trade interests being at the forefront of economic treaties, defunding Planned Parenthood, enforcement of our borders and laws along with a more robust deterrent in our foreign policy. Instead the American voter received John McCain’s cowardly health care vote and the other Republicans who voted with him. They voted to be thought of favorably at D.C. cocktail parties and on Morning Joe than what’s best for their constituents and America.

The American public and California voter was also told that Secretary of Health and Human Services, and leading Obamacare critic when he was in Congress, Tom Price had a plan of action ready to repeal and replace President Obama’s signature legislative achievement. Thus far Secretary Price has been silent on Capital Hill, and neither Secretary Price, nor the Republican leadership (led by Californian Kevin McCarthy), or critics of the current Republican health care overhaul have any answers on how to make health care more affordable and accessible for all Americans.

What should concern any Republican or independent is California Senator Kamala Harris becoming President Harris, because of Republican malfeasance on health care reform. Republicans bemoan they aren’t being given a fair chance and fake news is difficult to overcome while searching for health care solutions. Those sentiments are why we will lose, and lose big if we don’t get our act together immediately. Either stand up and fight for Republican values or else.

If Congressional Republicans, particularly California Congressional Republicans need assistance (and they do!) then listen to shows like Mark Levin, Hugh Hewitt or Dennis Prager who consistently interview health experts of all political stripes with answers and solutions to these problems; or contact the American Enterprise Institute, Heritage Foundation or RAND for detailed legislation that can be immediately voted upon.

However, if those are to far right then click on the Brookings Institute website for various plans and solutions to Obamacare – even the ultra-left leaning publication The Atlantic has answers.

Additionally it has been over seven years, and now a Republican majority of not anticipating for someone like Donald Trump to win doesn’t have an idea of what legislatively comes next. It’s mind-numbingly incompetent, and why Democrats will take back the House and Senate if something substantial isn’t put in place on how to govern before the year is over. Where are Darrel Issa, Kevin McCarthy and the dwindling California Congressional delegation? If Secretary Clinton were President Clinton does anyone believe she wouldn’t be pushing her Godless, radical agenda down America and California’s throats at this time? Not hardly.

The Democratic Party is no longer the party of the workingman or women or middle class, but is only about the top 1% in technology, entertainment, media and universities. Democrats are now about appeasing all sorts of anarchists and radical Islamists along with economic and energy policies that will deeply hurt America. The Party of Governor Pat Brown, and Presidents FDR, Truman and Kennedy is finished – the Scoop Jackson wing of the party is also dead. In finality, the Democratic Party’s policy ideas will kill America and a world in desperate need of California and American leadership.

According to the new, controversial, best-selling book The Strange Death of Europe: Immigration, Identity, Islam by Douglas Murray, Europe is committing national suicide implementing the same polices as U.S. Democrats want ad nauseum to occur immediately in America. Yet Republicans like John McCain and the editors and contributors at The National Review and The Weekly Standard should learn that Donald Trump is not the enemy. It’s the social, economic, education, energy, and national security policies of the Democratic Party led by Chuck Schumer, Jerry Brown, Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren, Nancy Pelosi, Barack Obama and Bernie Sanders that should be fought against with World War II-like vigor.

Outside of confirming Neil Gorsuch – using a Democratic legislative trick – Republicans also haven’t rid the world of the disastrous Iranian Nuclear Deal that hasn’t worked, housing is now depressed because of Democrat polices from the previous administration, and China is a continued menace; but somehow Republican leaders believe passing higher taxes on Democratic-controlled states is tax reform. Moreover, North Korea has missiles that can obliterate this state.

But Kevin McCarthy, Paul Ryan, Mitch McConnel, Darrel Issa and the rest of the Republican-controlled Congress seemingly can’t put together a plateful of legislative pancakes without choking them all over California and the American public. Democrats seem to never have that problem.

What Trump proved and Republicans aren’t grasping are Democrat-controlled states and California can be won with a pro-growth, pro-jobs, and pro-American message. Trump won states that haven’t been won in a generation with that message. The solution is to find real candidates for state and federal positions who can articulately convey the message of growth, putting American interests first, and watch the bluest state of all – California turn back to its pro-growth, pro-prosperity roots – that made it a beacon of light for the post World War II generation.

Todd Royal is a geopolitical risk and energy consultant based in Los Angeles.