We’re rooting for them.
A small group of Warren County Republicans have organized in hopes of making a difference. It’s not a revolution, but it might be as close as you are going to come in these parts.
We also like their chances, because they want to do the right thing.
They say they are trying to take back their party from leadership that has steered a course of special favors, political dirty tricks, vindictiveness and revenge against public officials who don’t follow orders.
Earlier this week, Warren County Republicans Nick Caimano, Caroline Barber and Ron Montesi met with Post-Star reporter Kathleen Moore to communicate their concerns for their party and their hopes for its future. Warrensburg Supervisor Kevin Geraghty also took part in the meeting.
Caimano, Barber and Montesi are three of the five leaders who represent separate groups of Republicans throughout the county upset about the direction the party has taken.
They specifically called out Warren County Republican Committee Chairman Michael Grasso for leading the party in the wrong direction.
Those three went so far as to say that Grasso might not legally be the chairman of the party after failing to hold an organizational meeting by Oct. 12 as called for in the party’s bylaws.
At that meeting, former Queensbury Town Board member Doug Irish was reappointed to the Republican Committee, even though he now works in North Carolina. All four objected to that appointment, especially after Irish’s role in political dirty tricks during the Queensbury election.
The four said Irish should have been removed from the committee, not reappointed.
More importantly, the four said they had loftier goals.
They said the Republicans should evaluate their current ethics policy while addressing whether current leadership can ensure the party will do things for the right reasons, rather than out of revenge or anger.
Geraghty and Caimano have already gone on the record saying that Grasso should step aside.
At the Dec. 21 reorganization meeting, Grasso was reappointed by those in attendance with the understanding that an executive board would work with him to oversee the party’s actions.
It was learned from the four Republicans that the board will be made up of Republican town supervisors and town chairs, but it was also a concern that the executive committee had still not met.
The four Republicans said the members they represent believe the party’s image needs to be rehabilitated as soon as possible, and there is a fear the party is still going in the wrong direction.
We concur on both counts.
The four also said they want to have a discussion about how campaigns will be handled in the future.
We can’t remember the last time we heard a political discussion about ethics and civility, so this is unprecedented.
Considering that Republicans have been the dominant party in this region for generations, we believe this is also incredibly encouraging news.
This is a once-in-a-generation opportunity for all local political parties to clean up the way they do business and run campaigns so that elections are decided on their merits instead of their nastiness.
We hope the four stick to their guns and fight for the changes that are needed.
We all would benefit.