Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Seats at the Table

This post is in response to something posted by Tom Lynch at Urban Elephants earlier today - "Republican Roundtable."

While I believe Tom's intention was to indicate that there should be a place at the table for more Republicans to discuss the future of our party, the ensuing dialogue seemed to insinuate that the NYYRC is little more than a mouthpiece for the county and state GOP. Nothing could be further from the truth.

When it comes to getting all Republicans on the same page in terms of the direction of our party and the movement in general, you will find no bigger advocate than me. I have always believed that nothing educates and energizes more than open and honest dialogue.

The current state of affairs for Republicans in New York State and just what we should do next calls for just that type of dialogue. Our party is at a significant point right now; call it a tipping point, turning point, flash point, what have you. Whatever you want to call it, a great deal of reflection and thought is called for right now about what needs to be done. I have confidence that Chairman Mondello will approach the situation with an open mind and that he will listen to reasoned opinions.

Regarding the discussion taking place right here, I have to respectfully disagree with the assessment that the affiliated New York Young Republican Club is in some way a lackey of forces in Albany or even Manhattan. We discuss and we debate just like any other organization. We often host speakers and engage in discussions that have offered criticism of the city, state, and national GOP.

And I wouldn't have it any other way. I desire a club membership that is informed about all the issues so that they can make intelligent decisions about policy and the people who guide it. I don't tell members who they should vote for, and I don't push any policy position upon the membership. I welcome anyone and everyone to attend one of our meetings to see for themselves how open we truly are.

As far as recognition is concerned, the club that I currently lead is formally recognized by the city and state GOP organizations. We are also the New York county YR club that is recognized by the state and national Young Republican organizations. Merging and name-changing with the club that is led by Robert Hornak has been brought up before, and probably will be again, but I am not going to address that here.

There may be some who think that the debate about the Republican Party's future is a closed discussion, but please don't count me or the New York Young Republican Club that I represent in that ilk. I'll sit at a table with anyone to discuss party politics. I'm open minded, and I like my colleagues to be the same way.

Rick Brownell
New York Young Republican Club

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