Arkansas GOP Seeking New Exec Director (Updated!)

You may remember some months ago when Republican Party of Arkansas Executive Director Karen Ray stepped down to move to another state or something. That happened in February, and everyone was very interested in the question of who would replace her, until all of a sudden we weren’t anymore.

Say, let’s follow up on that: The state GOP’s executive committee meets on Saturday here in Little Rock, and a look at the agenda reveals that the committee will be interviewing three two applicants for the job, as follows:

  • Chase Duggar (current political director for the state party)
  • Tracy Horne (public affairs and media relations consultant, formerly with the office of Gov. Mike Huckabee and the short-lived gubernatorial campaign of the late Lt. Gov. Win Rockefeller). UPDATE: Tracy Horne reports he had expressed interest in the position some months ago, but has since taken on additional obligations, and as a result has removed himself from contention.
  • Alice Stewart (media consultant, formerly spokeslady for Gov. Mike Huckabee’s office and his presidential campaign)

Others in the mix? And can the state Republican Party, with its recent record of incredibly poor fundraising, afford the hire? Stay tuned.

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28 thoughts on “Arkansas GOP Seeking New Exec Director (Updated!)

  • September 22, 2009 at 6:04 pm
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    Chase is probably the best choice, given his familiarity with the subject matter, and his experience.

    Hope that the Exec Comm. folks go with Chase.

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  • September 22, 2009 at 6:52 pm
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    Another vote for Mr. DuggEr

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  • September 22, 2009 at 10:38 pm
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    Chase is defintely the guy for the job

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  • September 23, 2009 at 3:50 am
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    The real question is will whoever they get be able to do the job that is needed. It seems the ARP is just falling apart. People leaving, fund raising at an all time low, Bankrupticies, credibility issues, etc. The whole organization needs a make-over from top to bottom. The are letting the conservatives down.

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  • September 23, 2009 at 6:43 am
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    Pardon me, Randy, but are you just one of the “nay sayers” that only bash the RPA? Or are you someone who steps up to the plate and tries to help out? Also – what bankruptcies? Chairman Webb seems to be in the middle of a crisis with his family owned business – but no bankruptcies to mention.

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  • September 23, 2009 at 7:36 am
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    I am surprised that Trevor Drown hasn’t declared for this job.

    Imagine what The Teams could do with the apparatus of the state GOP!

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  • September 23, 2009 at 8:57 am
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    Chase is the choice. He understands the political map in Arkansas and he has very good interpersonal skills. He is also a team player, which one could not always say about people who have previously held that position. We need folks in leadership at the party who put Arkansas races first, not just what the national party people want. Chase fits the bill for what we must have to WIN races.

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  • September 23, 2009 at 9:32 am
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    All well and good. I can take all of them. But reality, I think says Alice Stewart gets it. No matter how much it peeves folks, Mike Huckabee still draws a lot of water in this town. (You don’t draw s%!t, Lebowski.) Especially with the executive committee. She’s got an impressive resume and media experience.
    Not saying she’s my pick, as honestly, I don’t have a dog in the fight. But I’d be suprised if she doesn’t get it. But heck, who knows.

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  • September 23, 2009 at 9:59 am
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    Chase is the guy for this job. He has been around, and he has been working hard for the party for a long time. He has been one of the only ones to stick around. He has the ability and experience to turn it around.

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  • September 23, 2009 at 10:17 am
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    All right, so it sounds like there’s a good deal of enthusiasm for Mr. Dugger among the Arkansas Project readership, which means there is absolutely no way he’ll get the job. Way to ruin it for him, guys.
    D.

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  • September 23, 2009 at 3:46 pm
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    It depends on what the RPA wants. If they want an ED that will be around for only the next couple years and get them through the 2010 election cycle, then they should go with Stewart. If they want someone who will be around for much longer than that and can grow into the position, then Dugger is the guy.

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  • September 23, 2009 at 5:22 pm
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    Doyle Webb is strongly pushing for Tracy Horne, which is a decision that would cripple the Republican Party. He is nothing but a tag-along who got his jobs due to a friendship with WPR. He cares nothing for party building or proactive communication.

    Alice won me over when I saw this quote in an article. Quick response to make the Dems look stupid. We need to be proactive like that … and not hire someone who is always the last to arrive and the first to leave.

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  • September 23, 2009 at 9:16 pm
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    Chase Dugger plays favorites between Republican candidates in races at every level. And what exactly has the party accomplished since he joined RPA? His resume = working for RPA…and seemingly accomplishing nothing.

    RPA is in a state of disarray and let’s be honest–they’re not getting anything done. Every penny they raise goes straight to their salaries. Almost none goes to candidates. RPA is broken, but we want to expand it?? Sounds like the federal government.

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  • September 23, 2009 at 9:16 pm
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    Tracy needs to keep his job at the rent a car place at the airport and stay out of politics.

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  • September 23, 2009 at 9:18 pm
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    I guess they could hire Hank Jones. He did a great job on Janet’s campaign!! 😉

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  • September 24, 2009 at 7:39 am
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    I like Chase because he has been with the party for a long time

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  • September 24, 2009 at 8:41 am
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    Anyone,

    While Chase was political director and working with the legislators we actually picked up seats in the State House. In case you haven’t noticed that hadn’t been done in quite a while. I believe about half of the incoming state legislators were Republican. When was the last time that happened?

    I’m sorry if facts and numbers get in the way of your personal opinions.

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  • September 24, 2009 at 8:43 am
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    Anyone but Chase –
    I respectfully disagree with your comments.
    Chase worked hard for every candidate during the last election cycle that was willing to work for themselves. No one is more dedicated to the party and our principles. As far as accomplishments, under his leadership the party picked up 3 seats in the House and held all contested seats. I believe that this was the first time in almost a decade that the party actually had a net pick up. I am also fairly certain that the RPA contributed to every competitive race in the 2008 election cycle. Please call the RPA for the specifics.
    Trying to discrediting someone through misleading generalities is no way to prove a point.
    Representative Jonathan Dismang

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  • September 24, 2009 at 9:18 am
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    Lord knows Chase doesn’t want or need my help, but like Brett says…the last time we did NOT lose seats in the legislature was 2002. Chase was basically a one man show working on dozens of races at once and unlike most politicos in this state who have only known defeat, Chase actually succeeded. The Republican Party consistently rewards losers, its about time we rewarded winners.

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  • September 24, 2009 at 9:53 am
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    Anyone,
    A few thousand dollars (and that’s all they can give legally) will not win or loose an election for a candidate. And if it makes that much difference then the campaign was in trouble long before the state party money became a factor. The resources the state party can bring to bare on a particular race can make a big difference. A field coordinator to run gotv efforts or volunteers can make more of a difference than a small amount of money. How many candidates have enough money to hire someone or purchase good software to track their voters?

    Secondly since the year 2000 the parties have been very limited in what they can raise and give directly to candidates. No state or national party in the U.S. can realistically be the majority funding source for a competitive campaign. It is really incumbent on the candidate to raise the vast bulk of their campaign funds.

    The limited funds that can be distributed directly to campaigns is best used on campaigns that actually have a realistic chance of winning. If a candidate can’t raise money, can’t commit enough personal time and resources, and/or is running in a district that doesn’t have the right demographics for a Republican win, the party shouldn’t use it’s resources on a race with a rather low statistical possibility of winning.

    Chase worked hard for every candidate that i can think of, even to the point of helping some campaigns that had a marginal opportunity for success, but that could be competitive. By putting up better competition in these districts the Dems had to spread their resources and defend in areas they had not originally planned on. I truly believe this enabled the party to pick up three seats from the dems.

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  • September 24, 2009 at 11:43 am
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    Tommy Robinson

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  • September 24, 2009 at 8:12 pm
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    Marty Ryall

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  • September 24, 2009 at 10:53 pm
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    Chase is an all around good guy, a loyal Republican, a hard worker, and is actually one of the few that sincerely works for the good of the whole party instead of just ambition. He understands the political landscape of this state. He has character. He’s been successful. He can take risks without being reckless. He knows when to be a take-charge leader, and will even let others take credit if necessary. The only people Chase doesn’t care for are those who don’t care about the big picture. Regardless of whoever gets this job, no one who has worked with him can deny that he would be an effective E.D.

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  • September 25, 2009 at 10:11 am
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    Yeah, yeah Matt. The train is done left the station. We’re now making light of the whole thing. Please keep your comments confined to the satirical.

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  • September 25, 2009 at 1:54 pm
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    Bill Valentine does have a baseball field…we could finally have that Duggar family vs. the senatorial primary candidates game we’ve long wanted to have.
    Thanks, Max! You’ve solved two problems at once!

    Reply
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