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Primary endorsement policy roils GOP waters

At the recent Washoe County Republican convention a resolution was passed declaring that the local party was “manifestly opposed” to the preprimary endorsement “scheme” being pursued by the leaders and members of the Nevada Republican Central Committee. Not just opposed, manifestly opposed … whatever that means.

And while most media reports have focused on the resolution’s opposition to the state party’s preprimary endorsement policy, an amendment also was approved that instructs “the Governor and the Republican leaders in the assembly and senate that they should not endorse candidates in the primary election” either.

So in other words, unless Gov. Brian Sandoval, Senate Minority Leader moderate Mike Roberson and Assembly Minority Leader Pat Hickey rescind their already-issued preprimary endorsements (Hickey has endorsed; he’s just kept his secret), then the Nevada GOP should go forward with its own endorsements. Sauce for the goose and all.

But back to the resolution. It also declared that “the role of the Republican Party is to represent the will of registered voters identifying as Republican and promote the Republican ideals …”

And that’s why this misguided resolution is so vapid.

The will of registered Republican voters is to oppose tax hikes and limit government, which are also the ideals outlined in the GOP’s platform. And indeed that is exactly what Republican candidates such as Sandoval and Roberson ran on in 2010. But once in office, they reversed themselves, broke their word to Republican voters and betrayed the GOP’s ideals.

So if, as the Washoe resolution suggests, the role of the Republican Party is to represent the will of registered Republican voters, then it’s the obligation of the Republican Party to call out Republican elected officials who don’t represent the will of Republican voters and don’t promote Republican ideals.

The silly Washoe resolution aside, here’s what you need to know about the Nevada GOP’s preprimary endorsement policy:

1. Moderate establishment Republicans have an unfair advantage over grass-roots conservatives because they control the special interest money and issue their own preprimary endorsements.

2. GOP preprimary endorsements by the elected members of the party’s governing body would help level the playing field and result in more conservative GOP nominees. As such, moderate establishment Republicans are scared to death of preprimary endorsements.

3. Liberals in the media despise conservatives. Preprimary endorsements would help conservatives. Therefore, liberals in the media totally oppose preprimary endorsements by the Nevada GOP.

This is a no-brainer folks. If you support preprimary endorsements, you support helping elect better Republicans, not just more Republicans. If you oppose preprimary endorsements, you support electing Republicans who stand for nothing, will fall for anything and will vote with Democrats over and over and over again to raise taxes, grow government and spend more money.

Gut-check time, Nevada Republicans. Which side are you on?

Chuck Muth is president of Citizen Outreach, a conservative grass roots advocacy organization. He can be reached at www.muthstruths.com.