2/28/2013, "California Republican Party Convention: GOP attempts to recover from disaster," Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, Bay Area News Group, Steve Harmon
"Having sunk to its lowest depths in its 159-year history, the California Republican Party's first order of business at this weekend's convention will be to lick its wounds. The state party is still reeling from humiliating defeats in November that gave Democrats two-thirds majorities in the Assembly and state Senate.
It's $500,000 in debt and doesn't even have offices for its staff, which has dwindled to a handful of employees who work from home. The GOP's only gubernatorial prospect for 2014 is a conservative assemblyman who was once a border vigilante. And Republican voter registration in the state is at an all-time low of 29.3 percent.
Into all that gloom rides Jim Brulte, a former Republican leader in the Assembly and state Senate, as the presumptive new party chairman....
"Nothing focuses a party like a shellacking, and we got shellacked," Brulte said in an interview with this newspaper as he prepared for the weekend festivities, which begin Friday with the arrival of 1,000 GOP delegates, family and friends at the Hyatt Regency and Sacramento Convention Center....
Brulte's first move was to secure Karl Rove, the Republican uber-strategist, as the lunchtime speaker at the convention Saturday, a not-so-subtle message to conservative activists that he's seeking a pragmatic way out of the GOP's political morass.
It was controversial pick. Rove didn't endear himself to conservatives when he recently formed a new political group that he said would drum extremist candidates out of GOP primaries -- including those from the tea party -- as a way to appeal to the center.
Rove was himself at the center of GOP failures in the fall (Nov. 2012): His American Crossroads super PAC spent $300 million on mostly losing candidates.
In a nod to party activists, GOP officials hastily added conservative blogger Ben Shapiro as the convention's keynote speaker Saturday night, while moving Rove to the Saturday afternoon slot. But the strain between the activists and pragmatists remains.
"Going after [getting rid of] the tea party and conservatives will be a huge mistake because it's the conservatives who deliver the votes, who have the passion and commitment," said Celeste Greig, president of the California Republican Assembly, a conservative faction of the state party. "I want to win elections, but compromising on principle is not going to work very well."
Greig argues that California Republicans can revive their party simply by improving their message and making more personal contact with communities of color.
One ominous sign for the state party is that only one Republican -- Assemblyman Tim Donnelly, R-Twin Peaks -- has publicly expressed an interest in running for governor next year. A former member of the border-patrolling Minutemen, Donnelly is best known for virulently anti-immigration stances and for being arrested at an airport checkpoint for carrying a loaded handgun in his briefcase.
"If Jerry Brown runs unopposed -- or even worse, if Donnelly is all they can come up with -- Republican voters won't come out because there won't be anything to vote for," Quinn said. "Republican legislative and congressional candidates will be pulled down, and then you lose even more seats in the Legislature and Congress."
Brulte said he understands the depths of the GOP's problems. But he believes Republicans can restore some of their luster as early as 2014, when, he said, they can pick up enough seats in the Legislature to eliminate the Democrats' supermajority.
"I don't think you rebuild everything you lose in one election cycle," he said. "It's going to take some time.""
Zero Republicans in statewide office in California in 2013:
California "GOP's Tough times"
55 Democrats, 25 Republicans
26 Democrats*, 11 Republicans
10 Democrats, 0 Republicans
U.S. Senate seats
2 Democrats, 0 Republicans
U.S. House of Representatives
38 Democrats, 15 Republicans
*Three seats won by Democrats in November are now vacant and will be filled after special elections."
Added: Immigration not in top 3 Latino voter concerns for 2016 election, per Univision July 2015 national poll of entire US Latino electorate, democrat, republican, and independent:
8/21/2015, "Four Things you Should Know about Latino Voters in the 2016 Cycle," corporate.univision.com, Chiqui Cartagena
"Key Learnings from the Univision News Hispanic Electorate Poll"
"Univision Communications Inc. is dedicated to tracking the public opinions of the Hispanic electorate. This July (2015), Univision News issued a bipartisan, bilingual poll conducted in partnership with Bendixen @ Amandi International and The Tarrance Group."...
Latino 2016 voter issues: Immigration not in top 3:
1. Jobs and the economy 36%
4. Immigration 13%
"This July (2015), Univision News issued a bipartisan, bilingual poll conducted in partnership with Bendixen @ Amandi International and The Tarrance Group. The first of its kind in this political season, this poll zeroes in on four key findings:
Top three issues for Latino voters are “kitchen table” issues, not immigration. When it comes to determining their vote, Latinos rarely turn to immigration first. In fact, though it is a wedge issue with a tendency to alienate this demographic, “Immigration” clocks in at #4, with only 13% of respondents listing it as the top issue determining their vote. Far more important issues to Latino voters are “Jobs and the Economy” at 36%, followed by “Education” and “Healthcare” in the #2 and #3 spots."...
For more on the Hispanic vote, visit our dedicated site and follow @hispanic411.
* In this post, the terms “Hispanic” and “Latino” are used interchangeably.
Sources: Destino 2016 The Latino Vote, a Univision Noticias Poll conducted by Bendixen @ Amandi International and The Tarrance Group, July 2015; U.S. Census Bureau CPS November Supplements, 2000, 2004, 2008, 2016. Projected 2016 based on past growth; Federal Election Commission, Election Results for the U.S. President 2004 and 2012; Audience Partners Labels and List As Of 9-23-2014."