Losing the right to elect Republican candidates

February 7, 2024

Losing the right to elect Republican candidates

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Dear Editor,

News outlets recently covered the internal disputes of the Michigan Republican Party. Chief among these were the removal of former Chairwoman Kristina Karamo by the Michigan Republican State Committee. While the most often covered reasons center on dismal financial performance, lack of leadership, and poor transparency, I wanted to share my thoughts. As an active republican and leader for many years, what I am about to share is nothing short of a nightmare.

If you are a Republican who votes in the republican August primaries, you may soon be losing that right. In August of every even-numbered year, Republicans vote for who they prefer as the nominee to face Democrats in the November General Election in a variety of positions. New changes sought by the former chair and her administration would remove this. Rather than a primary where voters decide on the candidates, only precinct delegates would be allowed to vote. Precinct delegates are selected at the August primary and are the “representatives” of Republican voters in their area to the party. On February 15, precinct delegates will meet in county conventions around the state to select delegates to the district conventions on March 2. It is at the district conventions that the former administration will push for a vote to do away with primaries and institute this “convention” style system.

The positions you would no longer be able to vote for in August would include: Governor, U.S. senator, U.S. representative, state senator, state representative, sheriff, county commissioner, road commissioner, clerk, treasurer, register of deeds, drain commissioner, prosecutor, surveyor, and township supervisors, clerks, treasurers and trustees.

The decision to make this change or stop it from occurring does not rest in our elected officials, only the precinct delegates we elected in August of 2022. If you would like to keep your right to vote in the Republican August Primaries, this is what you can do:

  1. Ask your county clerk or township clerk for a list of your precinct delegates
  2. Call and email the precinct delegates, asking them to vote for delegates to the district convention that will Protect your right to vote in August primaries.
  3. Ask your elected county-level officials to attend and vote for delegates who will protect your right to vote in August primaries.

In our area, most township races have hundreds or over 1,000 voters. Instead, in many cases only a half dozen precinct delegates would vote. In the case of state representative where we have 14,000 voters, this would be drastically lowered to a few dozen. Please reach out to your Precinct Delegates and ask them to stand up for your right to vote in August primaries.

Protecting the right to vote of all Republicans,

Andrew Sebolt

New Era