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GOP Executive Director Fired, Creating Turmoil

The Maryland Republican Party, which has struggled for relevance in recent years, was in a state of upheaval today following the ouster of its executive director, Justin Ready.

Ready, who was in charge of the party's day-to-day operations, was asked to resign yesterday by Chairman James Pelura and was fired when he refused to do so, Chris Cavey, the party's first vice chairman, said in an interview.

April Rose, the party's events coordinator, subsequently resigned, Cavey said, leaving only two paid staffers at party headquarters in Annapolis.

Cavey said he was still waiting for an explanation from Pelura, who has had a strained relationship with several other party officials and GOP officeholders.

"Jim has always had an us-against-them mentality," Cavey said. "Something happened, and he shifted Justin to the enemies list."

Neither Pelura nor Ready returned phone calls placed this morning.

Cavey said he was not aware of any wrongdoing on the part of Ready, whose departure was first reported by the Web site of the Gazette newspapers.

"Justin is the only reason our state party is still floating with its head above water," Cavey said. "I have zero confidence in Jim."

The Maryland GOP has struggled from infighting and weak finances since the 2006 loss of Robert L. Ehrlich Jr., Maryland's first Republican governor in a generation. Democrats hold a more than 2-to-1 advantage in party registration in the state and have large majorities in both chambers of the General Assembly.

Cavey said he and other senior party officials wrote Pelura, asking for an explanation or his resignation. A meeting has been scheduled for July 18, Cavey said.

By John Wagner  |  July 7, 2009; 2:05 PM ET
Categories:  John Wagner  
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Next: Top GOP Senators Ask Pelura To Resign

Comments

HEY! If Bobby Hairspray is gonna run for governor again, the MD GOP better get their act together! LoL... uh, anyone out there? Again, if I was GOP, I'd sit this one out like Palin and rebuild for the next cycle.

Posted by: free-donny | July 8, 2009 2:29 PM | Report abuse

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