• Should Republicans Endorse Candidates That Don’t Share Core Republican Principles And Policies, Like Election Integrity?

    May 27, 2024
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    (From our sister site, the Connecticut Centinal. --Ed.)

    Photoshopped Image.

    By: Joe Solari

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    One of the primary responsibilities of the CT GOP and Republican Town Committees (RTCs) statewide is to recruit, support, and elect Republican candidates who uphold our core principles and policies. 

    Republican candidates.  Candidates who share Republican Principles and have the strength of character to advance and defend Republican Principles and Policies. 

    One of the key elements of the success profile for potential candidates for any job or office is the candidate’s track record. Clearly, we should seek out and support candidates with a track record of advancing and defending core Republican Principles and Policies. 

    One of those core principles is Election Integrity. Therefore, it is imperative that we prioritize candidates with a proven track record of advancing and defending Election Integrity.

    Recently (finally!), there has been growing awareness of concern regarding the acceptance of private funds from Democrat-front organizations like the Center for Tech and Civic Life (CTCL), commonly referred to as "Zuckerbucks" and the clear and present danger of doing so to our towns, states and Republic. This practice directly conflicts with the Republican National Committee's stance on Election Integrity, as evidenced by recent legislative actions and statements.

    According to The Washington Post, CTCL was “...founded as a left-of-center voter outreach group...then folded into Wellstone Action, one of the largest left-of-center campaign training organizations.” With millions from Mark Zuckerburg ("Zuckerbucks"), it expanded by launching the Alliance for Election Excellence ostensibly in order to “promote common values and standards” to election officials. 

    However, “The grants gave outsiders a say in how the election was administered by allowing them to dictate how election offices spent funds.” (“‘Zuckerbucks’ Were a Problem in the 2020 Election,” Foundation for Government Accountability, 4/13/22)  

    “…private funds could result in the donor or grant-making organization having undue influence over elections and perhaps favoring some jurisdictions over others.” (“Prohibiting Private Funding of Elections,” National Conference of State Legislatures, Updated 4/9/24)

    Accepting “Zuckerbucks” is in direct conflict with the RNC policy and the RNC has sued (and won) in states like Wisconsin to prevent the use of private funds in elections. “Zuckerbucks” played a huge role in the 2020 election nationwide to the detriment of Republican candidates. 

    Recently, the Republican House passed the “End Zuckerbucks Act" declaring the use of private funds in elections to be illegal. Twenty-eight states have now prohibited, limited or regulated the use of private funds like Zuckerbucks in their elections.

    Acceptance of these funds compromises election integrity by granting outside entities influence over how elections are administered, including dictating spending priorities, influencing voter turnout efforts, and even exerting pressure on election officials.

    Given these concerns, it's disheartening to see some registrars, including those in Greenwich (Fred DeCaro) and Wilton (Annalisa Stravato), accepting Zuckerbucks, thereby violating a key Republican principle. The actions of these registrars contradict the clear stance of the Republican Party at all levels against such practices. The decision to accept “Zuckerbucks” in Wilton and Greenwich violates core Republican Policy and the principle behind it.  (Patricia Gay, “Wilton Receives Grant To Help With Election Costs,” The Wilton Bulletin and "Greenwich Registrar For Sale: The Greenwich Swamp Spreads," The Connecticut Centinal.

    When considering candidates for endorsement this Spring, we should consider the implications of allowing private funds to infiltrate our election processes and take decisive action to uphold the integrity of our electoral system. It's essential that we stand firm in our commitment to fair and transparent elections, free from outside influence, and endorse candidates that will advance and defend this core Republican principle and policy.

    Joe Solari is a member of the Greenwich Republican Town Committee (RTC) and a State Central GOP Representative for Senate District 36.

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