More names have surfaced as announced or potential candidates for State GOP Chairman.
First, Mike Estève, chairman of the Maryland College Republicans, has declared his candidacy. I met Estève at a GOP event last spring. He has a lot of energy and enthusiasm. I regard him as a future leader for the GOP. But, making someone so young chairman of the party is going to be a tough sell for most central committee members. Will potential donors be ready to open their wallets for a minority party with a twenty-year-old in charge? Perhaps Estève should look towards winning a delegate seat or running for local office as his first campaign.
Unsuccessful Senate candidate Dr. Eric Wargotz has expressed some interest as well. The dialin’ doc certainly has the energy, intellect, and passion the job requires. Still, I can’t get past the irony of a pathologist serving as chairman of a Republican Party some regard as moribund.
The Baltimore Sun reported that Brian Murphy has been making rumblings about running. This scenario interests me most of all – although, he told the Washington Post he’s not doing it. Were Murphy to triumph over Mary Kane, the latest Team Ehrlich-sanctioned candidate, that would be a definitive sign that the party is ready to leave the past behind and move forward into the future.
Lastly, outgoing State Senator Alex Mooney has expressed interest in the office as well – though, I have heard other rumors that he wants to be Andy Harris’s chief of staff in Washington.
Still, as I stated in a recent posting about the chairman’s race, personalities should not determine this election. Each candidate should offer proposals to the central committee, and be ready to stand upon them. The party has reached a critical juncture, so this race should be more than a popularity contest. Ideas should matter most.
Let's hope this doesn't devolve into something akin to the California recall election of 2003.