POST-GAZETTE - Res Publica

La commedia finita!

by David Trumbull

February 10, 2006

My wife never did understand why I spent so much time and money on an abusive relationship. Now it's over.

The final straw was a small one, but then, aren't they always. Our local committee did everything to comply with the rules for the State Convention. But, then, as so often before, they changed the rules after the fact. So, there we were at ten o'clock at night rushing to find an open post office get out notice of a second caucus on a new date. Busy people would now give up two separate nights at meetings to elect delegates. Committee officers wanted to fight. Who knows, we might have won. But too much has already been spent on lawyers for the battles, and I have no desire to continue fighting the Republican State Party.

So I resigned from the Boston Republican city committee. Not mad, just tired.

Tired from seeing pro-life delegates to the 1996 national convention hiring lawyers to defend against Governor Weld's attempt to purge the anyone who wasn't whole-heartedly in favor of baby-killing. Some of those people --people who could get bus-loads of workers out to support a GOP candidate-- just gave up on the Massachusetts GOP after that.

Tired from my own fight, all the way to the National Convention in 2000, when Governor Cellucci bounced duly elected delegates simply because they weren't his personal picks. People who gave up their Saturday to go vote for me found out that, as far as the party leadership was concerned, their votes didn't matter. They dropped out too. Then came Jane Swift. No one I know knows much of what went on during her maladministration as her people simply refused to return phone calls from Republicans. That was pretty tiresome too.

Tired from the 2002 state convention. Delegates, by a large majority, voted to endorse Jim Rappaport for lieutenant governor, only to see Mitt Romney take the stage to present, as our Republican candidate, Kerry Murphy Healy. They burned the ballots immediately after that one. And more local party committees folded their tents.

And now? Well, in 200 of the 600 towns and city wards of the Commonwealth local activists have totally given up. There doesn't even exist a committee on paper. Many of the others barely hang on to their minimum legal requirement of three members. And the State Party is preparing for multiple challenges to the delegates elected from those remaining organized wards.

So come April 29, while a few multi-millionaires pretend to listen to delegates at the convention in Lowell, my wife and I shall enjoy a romantic weekend in New York City at the Metropolitan Opera.

I'll continue to vote for candidates from the stupid party. The alternatives are, for the most part, just too evil to contemplate. But I'm done with giving up my evenings and weekends to support a party that consistently rewards me with a kick in the Adam Clymer. I've changed my voter registration to unenrolled so I'll stop getting letters from the Republican Party asking for money. Make that, I'll stop getting letters from the Republican Party, as fund appeals are the only letters they send.

The fat lady has sung.