-Lets start with my winners list:
- It was obvious to most who attended, that this convention ended up being stagecrafted very nicely by Arnold's handlers/consultants/hacks. Arnold swooped into the Fairmont Hotel late in the afternoon on Friday and was gone later that night. He is a winner because his people were able to convince enough delegates to defeat most of the damning resolutions on his policies that lay before the CRP conventioneers save for one about appointing more Republican judges which passed. His dinner speech Friday night was very average as I said in my analysis right after I witnessed it
. So although Arnold is a winner in the sense that he avoided most of the strife & conflict going on behind the scenes, there is going to be a Chernobyl-like meltdown from conservatives if he doesn't close the deal with voters in November.
-My next winner is Tom McClintock. Tom is a conservative's conservative. I regret the fact that I did not vote for him in the recall. He has the right ideas that will move California ahead in the right direction. I question the Faustian bargain
he made with Arnold's people for the sake of party unity, but I will give Tom the benefit of the doubt until the votes get counted in November. One quick funny story about Tom that shows he has a sense of humor....I asked him as he was autographing my Arnold/Tom 06' teeshirt if he would cross off Arnold's name for me. He gave me a sly grin & chuckle and said, "no no no" as he was laughing. I wished him well in the upcoming campaign.
-The next winner is Tony Strickland. He outclassed & outmanuevered his opponent Abel Maldanaldo at almost every turn during the convention. You couldn't walk anywhere in the hotel Friday afternoon without hearing from his college republican true believers that Abel is taking food out the mouths of citizens by his actions to try to increase the minimum wage. It was great stuff. Tony then held a press conference where he denounced Rob Reiner and called on the governor to "terminate" him from the first five commission. Saturday morning he came to see us lowly bloggers at our blogger's "coffee with the candidates" and spelled out his vision for what he wants to do when he assumes office as the new State Controller. Finally his hospitality suite/party/concert was epic Saturday night. He had Jimmy Camp's band jamming until the wee hours and the room was packed out...always a good sign of strong campaign.
-The next winner was the Flashreport
panel on Saturday afternoon. It was nice to get to meet some new faces and reaquaint with old ones. All the FR bloggers had excellent talks at their turn with the mic. I also of course want to credit the "Godfather" himself Mr. Jon Fleischman for putting together such a fine website/blog. Now if we could just get Darrell Issa to come out of his shell a little more, LOL.
-Speaking of Darrell Issa, it pains me a little to put him in the winner category as well since he has a jihad out on good guys like Jim Gilchrist and Tom Tancredo, but Darrell walks the walk when it comes to wanting Republicans to win. I think he gets a little over zealous sometimes and his ego is immense, but at the end of the day he is there for the conservative causes. He cracked back on me pretty hard for supporting Jim Gilchrist, but I cracked back on him too so I'm not complaining. I can honestly say that when CRP conventions roll around, he's one of the few sitting members of the CA Congressional delegation that always shows up to woo the grassroots activists like myself. For that, I give him a lot of credit. You never see the likes of guys like David Dreier at these conventions. Just my observation.
-My last winner of the convention are the bloggers. There were not a lot of us there, but I can tell you that the MSM media guys and campaigns know we are growing in importance by the treatment that I and other bloggers received at the convention. A quick anecdote to illustrate my point....I was live blogging Arnold's speech on Friday night with Steve Greenhut of the OC Register. An AP reporter was sitting next to me and as we were introducing ourselves, she told me that she was out here from DC doing a story on Congressman John Doolittle. Once she knew I was a blogger, she asked if I had seen Roseville Conservative
himself, Mr. Aaron Park around. Aaron has been covering that race like a glove and evidently his blog has drown the attention of the AP for his coverage. I gave her Aaron's email and webpage link and another MSM gal was happy. Good job Aaron. I also want to give props to Tom Del Beccaro of Political Vanguard
who organized our blogger coffee Saturday morning. We had seven candidates/speakers as a captive audience to field our questions about themselves and how there campaigns were doing. It was good stuff.
Now for the losers:
-The biggest loser IMO at the convention was Abel Maldanaldo. He was getting outclassed at every turn by Tony Strickland. He had a very weak defense of why he was carrying a bill to raise the minimum wage during our blogger coffee. He is going to lose by a landslide in the primary.
-Steve Poizner is my next loser. I give him credit for coming before the bloggers at our coffee event, but I was not satisfied about his answers of his and his wife's past support of recent Democratic candidates(Al Gore). Something about that always raises a red flag in my mind. It reminded me of the 70th Assembly District primary last cycle where Chuck DeVore's opponent Christy Christich endorsed and held fundraisers for President Clinton and spent over $2 million to try to burnish her non existent GOP credentials. It's one thing if you used to be a democrat and never gave money but you were just misinformed a little, but it is another thing entirely to actively raise money for them in the recent past. I guess the only good thing Mr. Poizner has going for him is that he is facing the La Raza candidate himself Cruz BustaMecha err monte.
So that is my list so far. I may think of more stuff, but that is it for now.