(Lori Piotrowski) – Sunday afternoon, Nevada Republican Central Committee members from around the state met at the Gold Coast Hotel & Casino inLas Vegas. There was only one item on the agenda—to elect a new party chairman. Two contenders for the position, Dave Buell, from Washoe County, and Michael McDonald, from Clark, had been holding get-togethers and teleconferences, making individual phone calls and sending e-mails for a couple of months.
And after some last-minute campaigning in the ballroom, the candidates met face to face for another round of short speeches, after which the meeting broke up for members to cast their ballots.
McDonald was declared the victor once the votes had been counted. In a press release issued by Red Point Strategies, he said:
“Today’s vote was not about electing a new chairman, it was about delivering a mandate. This morning, the Republican Party of Nevada is closing the door on a bumpy past and charting A New Direction forward. In 2010, Nevadans spoke loud and clear that they wanted A New Direction inWashington, and today the Nevada Republican Party has done the same.”
He continued, “I am humbled by the overwhelming support I have received from every county,” continued McDonald. “But, today’s mandate is not about me. It is about a fundamental shift in the way the Nevada Republican Party will be doing business. I am encouraged by the energy and enthusiasm I have witnessed across our state from West Wendover toRenofrom Primm to Jackpot. Republicans are ready for what is coming in the fall,” said McDonald “I am excited to join them in their fight and to work tirelessly to ensure our Party gives them the tools they need to be successful at all levels, from County Commission to President.”
The new chair’s first order of business—to adjourn the meeting.
Shortly before the results were announced, a ripple of astonishment spread its ever-widening circles away from the back of the room. An NRCC member, evidently a Twitter follower of former chair Amy Tarkanian, noticed that she had tweeted the results. More and more people opened their Facebook accounts to see that indeed this had happened.
They were not happy. And justifiably so.
Tarkanian, who left the chairmanship after only a few months, wasn’t in attendance. It appears that someone from the vote counting committee leaked the results, which she then tweeted, congratulating the new chair.
The NRCC members should have been told first, and that was the duty of Interim Chair James Smack.
Shame on both of you.