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Pelura Gets "No Confidence" Vote

Leaders of the Maryland Republican Party expressed "no confidence" yesterday in embattled Chairman James Pelura but stopped short of calling for a special convention that would be required to oust him.

Pelura, an Anne Arundel County veterinarian, has faced growing calls to resign amid continuing financial difficulties at the state party and declining Republican registration numbers in Maryland, a traditionally Democratic-leaning state. With an election year approaching, Pelura has also clashed with Republican legislative leaders over his agenda.

Pelura, who was elected chairman in December 2006, declined to comment following a lengthy meeting of the GOP's executive committee at party headquarters in Annapolis.

But three sources familiar with the proceedings said the executive committee voted 20 to 10 to express "no confidence" in Pelura's chairmanship. The sources, who requested anonymity because they are not authorized to speak for the party, suggested the vote would give Pelura time to step down before party leaders consider more aggressive action.

Pelura most recently drew ire from fellow Republicans for firing Justin Ready, the party's executive director, without consulting other GOP leaders.

By John Wagner  |  July 19, 2009; 1:40 PM ET
Categories:  John Wagner  
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Comments

Pelura NEEDS TO GO! AND FAST....It's people like him that give moderate republicans a bad name. He'd lose his lunch to know there are pro-environment, pro-gun control, pro-choice republicans.

Jim Pelura and the Club for Growth I think secretly work for the Dems since they are soo good at helping Republicans lose seats and Dems win.

P.S. To all you Pelura lovers out there, since you went after Wayne Gilchrest, a fine congressman, I hope you're enjoying your DEM congressman in the first district.

We can only hope the next chairman has heard of the big tent

Posted by: moderatetent | July 19, 2009 3:23 PM | Report abuse

This will be harder on Marianne than on Jim.

Hopefully this will allow the centrists and the clear heads to assert themselves.

Jim Pelura can continue to work for the good of the party in a non-official role.

Posted by: tchtic | July 19, 2009 7:10 PM | Report abuse

Moderatetent is wrong when he says Jim Pelura gives moderate Republicans a bad name. Jim Pelura gives ALL Republicans.

Surely a party with a leader this dumb deserves to be called the stupid party.

Posted by: MadElephant | July 19, 2009 10:00 PM | Report abuse

Those of you who want to be in the big tent middle and still call yourselves republicans, seem to have forgotten your champion moderate Gilchrest, who, among many other party treacheries, officially backed Obama and hence the mess going on in Washington now. Get over it, he lost and deserved it. Your other moderate pick, Mr. McCain, also couldn't manage to be in a big enough tent either. So regardless of Jim Pelura's failure or success, your RINO position is causing more losses than he is, and making you pawns of the media who love to see Republicans act like Democrats. At least we know who the enemy is in the 1st Congressional District now. Understand the ship that is True Conservatism and get back on board or ride the Titanic to the bottom. I am willing to sink in the name of principle if our country has gone that far astray, but it is my hope that conservative principles (fiscal and social) still can win the day if all of us will rally around it.

Posted by: no-rinos | July 20, 2009 12:29 AM | Report abuse

"No-rinos" makes a great point. We should all sail on the ship of True Conservatism with Captain Mark Sanford, First Mate John Ensign, Cabin Steward Larry Craig.

The way Jim Pelura has handled finances at the Maryland Republican Party, he could be the purser. He could be "Gopher" and the other True Conservatives could be steering The Love Boat. Or is THAT the Titanic?

Posted by: LibertyHound1 | July 20, 2009 5:47 AM | Report abuse

"No rinos" needs to learn the history of the Republican Party, it was founded as a moderate big tent party by Abraham Lincoln, not the evangelical far right by Ronald Reagan as the "conservatives" would seem to think...

Let me remind you the kind of Republicans who've won state wide office in Maryland, and Congressional seats in Baltimore and Montgomery County -- those vote rich parts of the state and are able to appeal beyond the ultra conservative western and eastern parts of the state...that's right they were all MODERATES.

Although Democrats outnumber Republicans by more than 2 to 1 in Maryland, they have shown they are not unwilling to elect Republicans, but only those who are moderate and choose to represent their constituents rather than pander to the far right wing rush limbaugh wing of a political party.

You might as well drop a canon ball in your ship if and sink now if you want to have "conservatism" and push moderates away, but don't ruin it for the rest of us.

Posted by: moderatetent | July 20, 2009 9:36 AM | Report abuse

"no rinos" also repeated the "winning" pelura battle cry of conservative republicans "he would rather fall on his sword rather than see a (moderate) republican win"

I hope you realize Frank Kratovil (although a good man from what I know) won, not because people were voting "for" Frank, but rather AGAINST that smug andy harris.

Posted by: moderatetent | July 20, 2009 9:41 AM | Report abuse

I agree with moderatetent in the fact that Mr. Pelura and other groups like the Club for Growth aren't working in the parties best interest and are costing the Republicans the majority in Congress and even the White House.

In regards to Mr. Gilchrest, it is true that he was a very fine congressman. Even though I strongly disagree with many of his policies, he was still a Republican. After all, Reagan's 11th commandment was to never speak ill of a fellow Republican.

The Republicans will have a hard time gaining their once powerful majority especially if you have organazations like the Club for Growth chasing Republicans that doesn't agree with them out of office only to have the candidates they back lose i.e. Mr. Harris.

Moderatetent also carries the right message in saying that only Moderate Republicans have and will ever be elected in Maryland (but only if they throw Jim Pelura out)for example Mac Mathias, Connie Morella, or Bob Ehrlich.

I respectfully have to disagree with moderatetents view of the Republican party as Reagan's party of "right wing evangelicals" as I believe President Reagan was well respected in both Republican and Democratic circles, and the return results in both of his terms proved it along with the time of prosperity we had. Also I have to disagree with moderatetents view of Rush Limbaugh being the leader of the Republican party. I do not see Rush Limbaugh as the leader of the party, I see him as more of a spokesperson. Governor Hailey Barbour once said that when your the down party, you don't have one spokesperson, you have many.

Posted by: sensibleconservative | July 20, 2009 1:08 PM | Report abuse

The problem is that this is not a Conservative vs. Moderate fight. The Pelura supporters would like to believe that and blame us for splitting the party, but I don't see anyone that wants Jim to step down calling others names. The pro-Jim folks are the ones calling people rino's and liberals. Calling names though is what Dems do when they don't have an argument.

There are plenty of conservatives calling for Jim to step down including State Senator Alex Mooney. It is the Dwyerites or convenient conservatives that are backing Jim. They change the definition of what a true conservative is on a daily basis to support their needs. If Dwyer's type of conservatism is what Marylanders crave, then why did he lose to newcomer Steve Schuh in the primary and Schuh and Kipke in the general - narrowly (23 votes) defeating a democrat for the third spot?

36 Republican members of the House and Senate, the entire Executive Board, and fourteen counties think it is time for him to leave - if he truly has the best interests of the party at heart - he would step down and let us move on. By the way, three of the counties that voted to keep Jim (Cecil, Worcester and Wicomico) all had proxies that went against how their Chairman instructed them to vote. So make it 17 counties.

Posted by: ConservativelastIchecked | July 20, 2009 1:35 PM | Report abuse

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