Raul Labrador (R-ID) may prove an apt replacement for departing House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA). On Saturday, Chairman Labrador adjourned the Idaho State GOP Convention without accomplishing anything, due to party factionalism and in-fighting.
The Idaho Republicans met for the three-day convention starting on Thursday, and had a few goals in mind — goals that were rapidly derailed when the more extreme elements of their party, the Tea Party, turned it into a civil war. The far right, attempting to make up for their beating in the May 20 primary elections, set about removing the contentiously-elected delegates.
In return, those delegates accused the Tea Partiers of gaming the system to install one of their own in the state GOP chair. At the end of Saturday, all 15 delegates from Bannock County were unseated, and there were attempts in the works to unseat delegates from Ada and Twin Falls counties.
The chairman for the convention, Raul Labrador, brought the meeting to a close before the delegates could fulfill their initial goals: elect the state party chair and vote on party platform amendments.
This does not bode well for Labrador, who’s running to become the new majority leader in the House of Representatives. According to AP, Labrador said:
“[t]his is as low as the party can go. We have hit bottom. I think the party has no choice but to go up from here.”
Labrador joined the race on Friday to succeed the unseated House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, and hopes to create “a leadership team that can bring the Republican conference together.”
Yeah. Good luck.
Labrador is facing down long odds against House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, who started rounding up his support among Republicans on Wednesday.
State Senator Chuck Winder was surprised by the level of fracture at the Idaho state Convention, and according to the Spokesman-Review, said that “there’s always been disagreement on platforms and things like that, but to go to the level they went to this time to disqualify people. . . People that have been around a long time don’t remember anything like this.”
h/t Huffington Post