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Meeting GOP Joe

April 8th, 2007 by Kevin

This last Thursday, I as able to break away from my job for an evening to get a chance to head down to Keegans. Granted, I haven\’t been there in about 20 years now (although probably more than any member of NARN has though), but I also wanted to be there for Andy\’s mystery guest. Fair disclosure, I knew who it was prior to my showing up….Joe Repya.

Prior to the John Kline event I had never actually met the man, and prior to Thursday I had never done more than shoke his hand and said \”Thank you for speaking and for your service\”. I\’m definitely open to new leadership in the MN GOP, but despite the fact that I\’ve heard only good things about him, I wanted the chance to meet him myself.

Despite that we had only shoke each others hands for about 2 seconds previously, I was pleasantly surprised that he not only remembered me but apologized for not being able to give me more time at the John Kline event. Admittedly even before that I had to give the guy credit, I like a man that isn\’t afraid to associate with \”the commoners\” in a local pub for an evening. In addition, he had no problem with giving us his business card with both his email, home and cell phone numbers in case we needed to contact him.

Now surely, an attentive skeptic would point out that these qualities have nothing to do with running a state political party. And they would be very correct to do so. Giving someone a warm fuzzy feeling just by meeting them isn\’t going to win any elections. An equally attentive supporter would then point out that it doesn\’t hurt. And that is also very correct.

However, over the course of the evening I found a man dead set on returning the principles of Reagan to the party. Okay, fair enough, but can he do it? What I also found is an inspiring can-do no-surrender attitude that it was quickly obvious carries into all parts of his life.

So he was energetic, motivated, and had the right ideas in his head. But he also wanted to know what we had to say and our opinions. Which is nice to see, especially for someone that is wanting to put the party in the hands of the delegates. From talks it appears as if he already has the necessary cash to run his campaign, which should help quiet any claims that he can\’t raise money. He\’s definitely got a refreshing message, and the attitude to deliver it.

I think we all eventually got a chance to chat with Joe for a moment, and after he had to take his leave of us, we were able to chat amongst ourselves a bit. I think the general consensus was not just that Joe would win, but by how much. Now while we may just be a bunch of bloggers than enjoy politics too much, many (if not most) of us are also delegates, activists, district officers, etc. If I were Ron Carey I\’d be very worried about my seat, and not be making too many long range plans.

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