Over these last few months, we’ve seen stories of Ohio GOP Chairman Matt Borges and the silliness of their attacks on conservatives. While there are a dangerous few conservative incumbents in the state party, challengers were offered to many of the remaining 66 members of the State Central Committee in an attempt to revitalize the Republican Party in Ohio and make it more open to the grassroots. This effort precedes John Kasich’s presidential run although a good handful of of Central Committee members are committed John Kasich delegates.
Some challengers won, some conservative incumbents lost, and the result was a draw. Ohio’s role in the 2016 election is set and if Kasich favors himself as a king-maker, then these members and delegates will be his army on the convention floor. Moving forward however, all statewide offices (swept by Republicans in 2010) will be up for election in 2018 and this Ohio GOP team will likely move people like chess pieces to make sure their candidates are unchallenged in the primary. This might sound good on paper, but it clearly leaves the voters out in the cold.
A cute little story that ran around Ohio conservative circles was the issue of the Ohio GOP logo and its “expedited” trademarking. Some Central Committee challengers were designing postcards to send out and chose to use the Ohio GOP Logo – the state in a solid red except for a blue strip by the Lake Erie coast with a white elephant image in the middle. After some research, there appeared to be no registration on this logo so it was included and the postcards were printed and mailed.
Just days later, these candidates got a letter exclaiming that the logo was, in fact, trademarked and they must cease all future publications and all mailings that include said logo. Research commenced again, and it was learned that this logo was trademarked… on the day the letter was sent! Moreover, the trademark office charges $100 to expedite the registration of a logo which the Ohio Republican Party happily paid.
An additional wrinkle is that the Ohio Republican Party apparently had some advertisements considered to be attacks on fellow Republicans which goes against the bylaws of the party. There are those asking for Borges’ resignation, although I’d be very surprised is anything will come of this.
The Precinct Project is active in Ohio, and we may see a few new faces within the 88 county Republican parties. Until then, don’t blame ALL of Ohio for John Kasich. Yes, conservatives voted for him in 2010 as he inched out the incumbent Governor Ted Strickland. What else were we supposed to do? But state apparatchiks are difficult to turn, and we’ll just have to work with what we have.