On Saturday I attended the convention of the Tennessee Republican Assembly. TRA is part of the National Federation of Republican Assemblies, which calls itself, “The Republican Wing of the Republican Party.”
About fifty people were in attendance at the convention. We networked, and socialized and ate. We heard an address from State Representative Susan Lynn on the State Sovereignty movement. Bobbie Patray of Tennessee Eagle Forum was given an award and honored for her many years of service as a lobbyist with Eagle Forum. A panel consisting of several local activists talked about the future of the Republican Party in Tennessee and the conservative movement.
One of the speakers on the panel was Ken Marrano. Ken is a tireless local political activist. He has been an organizer of the local Tea party movement, he is the organizer of the statewide association of right-of-center bloggers called TennconserVOliance, and he had received national attention for his political organizing and was on the road as part of the national Tea Party Express.
Ken said something at the meeting which I thought was so very, very wise. He said that we conservatives could make a much greater impact on the direction of our country if we focused our attention locally. Looking at his website tonight, Blue Collar Muse, I saw where he addressed this same topic in a blog post. Please read his post. Here is an excerpt:
Let’s assume 1,000,000 people marched on Washington, DC last September spending 48-72 hours and $500 each to do so. Simple math reveals a pool of 48,000,000 to 72,000,000 man hours and a whopping $500,000,000 in cash. That’s enough to put 1 to 1.5 million man hours into phone banking, envelope stuffing, and door knocking to go along with $10,000,000.00 in giving to candidates in each state in the Union!I could not agree more. In my view, we conservatives squander a lot of our resource by focusing on Washington rather than the courthouse and the statehouse. I run into people all the time who have gone to one of the marches on Washington or to the CPAC convention or who send money to major causes funneled though large national organization. I also run into people who listen to the Rush Limbaugh or Glen Beck on a regular bases and stay riled up but never put that emotion into action.
I think staying motivated and informed is worthwhile. I am sure going off to national conventions is fun and I am sure a march on Washington is a rush; but, does it change much? To affect the direction of our nation, one can do more where one is rather than focusing elsewhere.
The Davidson County Republican Party is committed to being a competitive party in this county. People are needed to man the phone banks and conduct voter registration drives, and work the polls. There is a lot of work to do. One has a greater chance to change the direction of the country by changing it from the bottom up than from the top down. Your voice is a lot louder in your local community than it is in Washington.