Mike Kueber's Blog

September 13, 2012

Hijinks at political conventions

Filed under: Issues,People,Politics — Mike Kueber @ 12:10 am
Tags: , ,

 When I ran for Congress in 2010 in the Republican primary, one of my competitors was a local doctor named Robert Lowry.  Although he was a neophyte as a candidate, he ran a strong race and just missed the runoff even though he was hugely outspent by the two candidates who got into the run-off (Quico Canseco and Will Hurd).  His catchy slogan was, “Doc Lowry, the cure for Congress.”

Lowry was justifiably encouraged by his good showing and considered again taking on Canseco, who won the 2010 primary run-off and then the November general election, but apparently Lowry decided to pass.  He has, however, remained active in the party and occasionally sends missives to his faithful.  One of his 2012 activities was to attend the recent Republican National Convention in Tampa as a delegate, and earlier this week he reported on that experience.  (His missive attached below.)  Suffice to say the experience was not a good one.

Full disclosure – during the 2010 congressional campaign, I learned that Lowry is not a mainstream Republican.  I heard rumors that he loved Ron Paul, and when he gave a vigorous defense of legalizing marijuana, I started believing the rumors.

You may have heard that the Ron Paul people at the convention were upset by the lack of respect shown to them (the Paul insurgents) by the establishment Republicans of Romney.  I never heard what the specifics of their complaints were, but I’m guessing that treatment is what prompted Lowry’s complaint and cynicism in his missive.

Coincidentally, the Democratic national convention has been subject of similar claims about undemocratic processes last week.  As you probably heard, the Democratic platform failed to contain any reference to God or to Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.   These positions apparently reflect the view of a majority of the Democratic delegates, but when Republicans and the media pointed out the glaring omission, President Obama decided to beat a hasty retreat by announcing that the omissions were an oversight and would be corrected post-haste. 

But, as with the Ron Paul delegates at the Republican convention, many Democratic delegates had an old-fashioned, albeit outdated notion that decisions would be arrived at democratically, not by dictatorial decree.  That explains why there are news reports that, when Convention Chair Antonio Villaraigosa, called for a voice vote on inserting God and Jerusalem into the platform, the “no’s” yelled it down, but Villaraigosa ignored them and declared that the “ayes” have it.

Politics is not a place for idealists.



Dr. Lowry’s “convention recap and on to November”


First, I would like to thank my fellow National delegates:

Col. Robert Casias, Ben Stringer, Joe Manak, Nunzio Previtera, Beth Cathey, Shawn McAnelly, Jennifer Streeter

Honorable mentions: Shawn Mendoza and Jonathan Streeter

Our Texas delegation was housed at a golf resort twenty miles north of the city and we were bused in each day to the Convention. The Louisiana delegation was at the same resort as well.

I was blessed with meeting several new people of our Texas delegation along with delegates from many other states.

The start of the convention activities on Tuesday, there were several “votes” scheduled for the delegates to vote upon (rules, platform, credentials, etc.). I put “votes” in quotes here, because upon the very first “vote”, it was made clear to all the delegates who were paying attention (maybe 70%) on the floor that their voting was being done for appearances only, and that the actual vote count would be completely ignored by those running the “show.” For example: despite a clear and resounding majority of Nay votes on the first question, the chairmen, declared “the Ayes have it” and then also completely ignored the calls from the floor for a standing count. In fact, as the Texas delegation was seated way to the side of the stage, we could see the huge tela-prompter screen, which when the vote was called for, already had the next line up which stated in clear English: “the Ayes have it.” So clearly, the decision of what the result would be, had already been determined by those running the show…despite what the truth of the matter was: that being that the Ayes were outvoted. It was that action by the chairmen, and how outrageous a slap in the face his actions were to truth, justice, and to all those who were present, which put a significantly large contingent of otherwise go-along Republicans there, onto the liberty and tea-party side of the camp that day. Many of them are still hopping mad and left Tampa at the end of the week with plans on going back to their respective hometowns and getting more aligned with those calling for a true change in the party from the ground up. By the way, the microphones set up at each state’s marker, were not even on…they were just there for appearances. When asked about how the “leadership” could get away with such shenanigans, our own state chairmen (Steve Munisteri) stated, that “for the past twenty years, these things have been scripted” for the show of it, and the delegates really have no voice whatsoever, but are here so that the RNC can put on a national show for the media. To his credit, he did admit that he “would not run things this way.” Over all though, in the end, we delegates actually voted for nothing…our presence there was for the cameras only.

With that lesson under my belt, I decided my time would be best spent by getting to know as many delegates from all over as I could and speaking with them to get their thoughts on what needs to happen if we plan on having any sort of individual God-given rights left being respected in the America much longer. I was pleasantly surprised to see that so many of the otherwise low-key Republicans were now actually fired-up to fight for a change in D.C. and state that they see now, that it will also take a change in the RNC to get this done. I spent most of the rest of my time on the floor, mingling with several delegates from Texas and other states, about how we might keep in contact over the next two years and try to continue to move the cause of small government and protection of our individual rights back into the mainstream of our party, and this nation. When Gov. Romney spoke, he made mention about several truths – two of those being that we need more jobs in America, and less national debt. What he did not mention though, was anything about actually getting rid of government departments, or rescinding the mountains of regulations and ridding ourselves of the hoards of D.C. regulators so that the American people can once again actually create jobs here in the states. Several reporters asked questions of us about how the GOP ticket was shaping up now that Rep. Ryan was on board, and if this brought more excitement to what seemed to be for many delegates there a rather lackluster support for Romney coming into the convention. The media folks all had this same position or assumption as if all of them were getting their instructions from the same person. My typical response was that Obama has been so terrible to such a wide swath of the American landscape, that my dog should be able to beat him. Adding Rep. Ryan to the ticket may be exciting the Republicans who were already going to vote Republican, but from what I have witnessed from the other delegates there, Rep. Ryan would probably not bring many of the swing voters (the voters we need to get) in as he is still seen by most swing voters as just another D.C. insider, and frankly the people in the hinterlands are simply done with D.C. insiders.

We clearly have a lot of work to do, and I would hope that given what has transpired at our own convention, everyone is a bit more interested in getting involved in the political system both locally and nationally today, then before. There are a lot of scalawags in the upper echelons of government, and our national party leadership is obviously not immune to the disease either. The RNC needs to have a lot of new blood put into positions. Hopefully, with the likes of people such as our own Texas state chairman, that change can take place over the next two years, and we can get some real people, who have had real jobs, and lead real lives, into positions of leadership.

I would like to remind everyone that there are several races where candidates need YOUR help – help with block-walking, phone banking, and many other things. If we want a better political situation to exist next year, we each need to play a part in making that happen. I am personally very exciting about staying involved with the several campaigns around south Texas, including Dr. Donna Campbell, Mike Berlanga, Col. Casias, and of course Rep. Canseco, to name just a few.

Thank you all for allowing me to be a part of our Texas delegation.

Uniting our Party for Liberty,

Dr. Robert Lowry


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