Party Line Newsletter: Volume XVII
Volume XVII, June 25th, 2020
There is much news to report since our last meeting in February. Still, I’d like to open this newsletter by wishing everyone well and letting you know how much I’ve missed the RSCC meetings, the leadership lunches, the RPEC and LFRW meetings, the fundraisers, and most of all the friendship and camaraderie with our members. Surprisingly, the last three months have been the busiest of my chairmanship, but after reading this newsletter, perhaps you’ll understand why. So let’s get started:
Despite three months of lock-down and quarantine, July will shortly arrive to find the American people still beset by a pandemic, economic dislocation, nationwide protests and riots, and rising international threats. Moreover, the opening salvoes are being fired in what promises to be the most contentious and divisive presidential campaign in recent American history, significantly adding to our existing national malaise.
While the past ninety days have certainly challenged us in unique ways, even the most cursory examination of American history reveals that our nation has seen worse, in fact, far worse. Still, as a people, we have always overcome these difficulties and prevailed in the end. Now that is not to say that we will always and inevitably conquer every adversity; our successes have never been automatic. But I do believe that the innate self-confidence, hard work ethic, and love of country which the majority of our citizens still possess, will see us through the present crises.
But politics at the national level is a battle involving tens of millions of people working together to achieve a common goal. Our ultimate victory in this fight depends on the success of the one American political party with a noble and untarnished history, grounded in the ideals of liberty and justice, and possessing the organizational strength necessary to defeat Marxism and anarchism. That party is, of course, the Republican Party, founded in 1854 with the specific goal of ending slavery in America. Never forget that fact, and be proud of who we are.
So the responsibility for leading the country out of the present political, moral, and economic chaos must necessarily fall on us as Republicans- there is no other organization with the means or even the political will to do so. That other major national political party is so mired in self-doubt and moral contradictions of its own making as to be not only incapable of healing the country but mostly responsible for dividing it in the first place!
Our victory in 2020 is not about a few hundred judgeships or even a trillion dollars in the national budget going here instead of there, but rather the survival of the core foundational beliefs upon which our country was founded and upon which our national strength and economic prosperity are based. The issues before us are genuinely momentous, the political battle lines are drawn, and it is our duty as activists to carry our banner proudly and lead the charge!
Louis Gurvich, Chairman
Republican Party of Louisiana
Upcoming July 11th Presidential Preference Primary
Louisiana will hold its Presidential Preference Primary on July 11. Extended early voting has already started and will continue through July 4, Sundays excluded. Don't forget that there are other races on the ballot, including our RPEC races. This is a winner-take-all primary, binding the entire RNC delegation to vote for the winner. Now there isn't much doubt about who is going to win the Republican presidential primary in Louisiana. Still, it's important that all voters registered as Republicans before November 30, 2020, get out and vote to show maximum support for our President. Not since the late '60s has the country been as politically divided as it is now. America needs leadership that believes in our country's fundamental greatness. President Trump has what it takes to defeat the radical left, rebuild our economy, and confront rising foreign foes. We need him back for a second term, and he needs your support on July 11!
Next RSCC Meeting Scheduled for August 8th
The next RSCC meeting has been scheduled for 10 a.m. on Saturday, August 8th in Baton Rouge at the Louisiana State Capitol inside the House chamber. Please arrange to be there or send a proxy. Elections for the RNC offices of National Committeeman and National Committeewoman will be held at this meeting. NOTE: All other party leadership elections will be held in early 2021.
Louisiana's Delegates to the 2020 Republican National Convention are Selected & Ready for Jacksonville
On June 13th, the LAGOP hosted its State Party Convention via Zoom. At the convention delegates and alternate were voted on and approved to make up our delegation to the Republican National Convention in Jacksonville. Public Service Commissioner Eric Skrmetta was elected as our delegation chairman and Agricultural Commissioner Mike Strain was elected as our Vice Chairman. Congratulations to Eric, Mike, and our delegates and alternates! If you would like to see our delegation list, please click here.
LAGOP Announces a New Interim Executive Director
During a regular meeting of the Republican Party of Louisiana's Executive Committee, Chairman Louis Gurvich announced that Lauren Griffin, the party's current Operations Director, had been named as the Interim Executive Director of the LAGOP.
Though young, Lauren has already become a familiar face in Louisiana politics. Starting as a page in the Louisiana House of Representatives, then working with the Rural Caucus in the legislature before joining Ralph Abraham's gubernatorial campaign as Deputy Political Director, she joined the LAGOP as our Operations Director this past November. Lauren has established herself as a gifted, dynamic leader capable of working with diverse groups and interests.
"I'm honored to be taking on this important role at such a crucial time," said Lauren, "and I'm proud to follow in the footsteps of Andrew Bautsch, who was a great Executive Director and mentor. I look forward to building on his success and helping to re-elect our President, Vice President, and our Republican Congressional delegation. Chairman Louis Gurvich expressed similar enthusiasm, "In the short time Lauren has been with us, she has shown a remarkable ability to lead and inspire others. I'm looking forward to working with her."
Early this year, Republican legislators announced that their primary legislative goal would be the passage of several tort reform bills. Our delegation duly passed these bills over the bad-faith objections of Gov. Edwards and his dark money groups.
Republicans prioritized tort reform because they understand it would save Louisiana's citizens potentially thousands of dollars a year and revitalize Louisiana's stagnating economy. Unfortunately, Gov. Edwards opposed Republican efforts at this crucial reform, despite promising voters in 2019 that he would work closely with the legislature to reform our state.
The Governor and his dark money groups created and financed an attempt to force-feed the legislature and public a false narrative. Their narrative was claimed that tort reform would not lower our insurance rates, but this is demonstrably false. Louisiana is one of the only states with laws that promote frivolous lawsuits still on the books. Repealing those laws would lower car and truck insurance rates just as it has done in every other state that has passed similar reforms. Of course, rather than admitting he was wrong, John Bel used his veto power to kill badly needed change that would have benefited almost all Louisiana citizens.
To the outside observer, it would appear Gov. Edwards doesn't care that our state's outdated litigation laws hamper Louisiana's economic recovery. It would seem Gov. Edwards doesn't care that Louisiana families are struggling due to policies his party put in place decades ago. He ran on a platform of "Putting Louisiana First," but since the earliest days of his administration, he has chosen to put the interests of dark money groups first, before Louisiana.
Right now, across this state, hundreds of thousands of families are stressed over whether they'll even be able to make ends meet in the face of an economic crash and global pandemic. They're worried about how they'll pay their mortgages, send their kids to school or college this fall, or afford their sky-high insurance rates.
That's why Republicans passed tort reform; that's why Republicans designed programs and policies to rebuild our economy and bring more jobs to our state. We Republicans can't stop thinking about ways to make life a little easier and a lot more prosperous for every Louisianan. Still, John Bel keeps trying to block our attempts to make life better for all our citizens because he has no interest in Louisiana succeeding. Instead, he would rather create more government dependency and less autonomy for the people of Louisiana.
Republicans are offering Louisiana a path to prosperity, and we won't stop working for the people of this state until Louisiana finally reaches its full potential.