With the State GOP elections this weekend, we know there are many in PeakNation who have to make a tough decision in the State Chair election. Will you re-elect Ryan Call or elect challenger Steve House? Don’t worry, we’re here to help. Below is Steve House’s candidate questionnaire and, in the next post, Ryan Call will answer our questions. We provided the questions – they provided the answers. Even if you aren’t voting on Saturday, get to know these two worthy gentlemen.
What are your greatest political accomplishments and failures, and how do you plan to apply those lessons learned in your role as GOP Chairman?
- I was the Adam’s County Chairman for 14 months and helped to build an organization that was very successful in 2013 and 2014 compared to past performance.
- I ran for governor in 2014 and while I did not get through the assembly successfully it was one of the best experiences of my professional life because of the people I met, the leadership principles I learned, and my time in the race gave me the ability to work for Bob Beauprez and Cynthia Coffman during the general election process.
- Getting into LPR and graduating from that program which solidified my ability to communicate conservative principles.
- Being involved in getting a city councilman elected back in the early 1990’s which gave me a passionate curiosity for politics and it’s various processes.
- Working on campaigns in 2010 and making a contribution to the efforts of several candidates.
- Working as an aide for a year supporting Senator Kent Lambert because I wanted to understand how legislation worked and how the process of state government functioned. I was specifically working with him in the JBC.
- I set out to win the Governor’s race in 2014 and I didn’t.
- I did not complete my term as Adam’s County Chairman because I was running for Governor and there always is more that needed to be done.
What do you think the role of State Party is in a Presidential election year?
It really isn’t any different than in any election year. The state party is a service organization built to support candidates at the county, HD/SD, statewide, and federal levels. Raise money, build better data systems, create more organizational maturity in the counties, and win elections. The Presidential election of 2016 is absolutely critical and as state chairman I would conduct a fair, honest and open primary nomination process and then support the general election candidate who wins.
Where do you see the GOP having the greatest opportunity for gains in 2016?
- The Presidential Election victory.
- Increasing voter registration in the formerly Republican category along with Millennial, GenX, and GenZ voters.
- Increasing the majority in the State Senate.
- Winning the State House majority back.
- Beating Michael Bennet.
What makes you better than the other guy (go ahead, just tell us)?
I believe I will be better at bringing the various parts of the Republican Party together. There are times when leadership needs to change when a membership organization like the Republican Party is fractured and now is one of those times. My depth of experience in business will allow me to run the organization more effectively. I believe I am a better motivator and politics is about motivating people to do things as volunteers and donors that will create a better Republican Party. I also think being a candidate for office helps me understand what it is like to be a candidate in a tough race and the emotion and challenges you go through to do that which will benefit us in recruiting, training and winning.
What part of your professional/political experience will be the most valuable to you as GOP chairman?
Running small and large businesses in which I inherited people who had to be convinced to buy into my strategy to make us successful. Organizational dynamics and growth are specialties I bring to the table. It helps to have been a candidate and a county party chair, as well.
What goals as chairman are most important to you personally?
Being able to say that we delivered on what is most important to Republicans. We created majorities that allow us to limit government, lower taxes, reduce regulation, promote free markets, and maintain individual rights. We cannot do that unless we are in the majority and focus on a Colorado first mentality.
Which famous political figure most influenced your life?
Abraham Lincoln. Honest and unafraid to lead in difficult times no matter what the risks were to himself.
What’s the most interesting fact about you that few people know?
When I was 10 years old I was the President of an organization called Stamp out Stupidity, which was an anti-drug organization.
Millennials are a major demographic who tend to lean away from conservative politics, but there are a many independent or undecided younger voters who could be included in our Party. What will you do as to reach out and make them feel welcome and included?
There are actually more unaffiliated millennials registered in Colorado then Democrats or Republicans. We first have to go to them where they are and in a way they want to hear our message. We can’t just invite them to meetings and hope they come. Millennial and Gen Z voters are telling me that they want the truth and not political spin, they want to talk about opportunity in America not about the Constitution and I believe there is a way to do both. There are actually 5 generations of voters alive today and we have to create a mechanism for each generation that works. Millennials need to hear from us the way they want to be contacted and that probably doesn’t mean by regular mail or phone calls. I will engage them to become part of the leadership that solves our biggest problems because they have the ability and will soon have the responsibility to do that. The leadership team in the Colorado Republican Party will have millennials and GenX leadership that have important roles and responsibilities not just token positions or titles.
There are many factions within the Republican Party: conservatives ranging from very socially conservative to very fiscally conservative, libertarians, etc. How will you work to bring those different pieces together to build a stronger, more functional Republican Party?
It starts with listening to them and standing firmly behind our platform. I believe the grassroots organizations feel like they have been on the outside and want to be heard. I believe most traditional Republicans have felt like they are on the inside and their successes have to be respectfully acknowledged. I lead by example and all sides of the party will have access to me. I will make sure the Executive Committee is represented by all facets of conservatives as well because we need the Executive Committee to be a market place for ideas to win across all Republican landscapes.
Please list your elected official endorsements (not that PeakNation™, you aren’t important, but there’s a greater likelihood of readers knowing elected officials).
- Cynthia Coffman, Attorney General
- Tom Tancredo, former Congressman
- State Senator Kevin Lundberg
- State Senator Kent Lambert
- State Senator Vicki Marble
- State Senator Chris Holbert
- Ted Harvey, former State Senator
- Bernie Herpin, former State Senator
- State Rep. Janak Joshi
- State Rep. Gordon Klingenschmitt
- State Rep Lori Saine
- State Rep JoAnn Windholz
- State Rep Kevin Van Winkle
- Mark Waller, former House Minority Leader
- Marsha Looper, former State Rep, HD19
- Frank DeFilippo, former State Rep, HD25
- Steve Durham, State Board Of Education
- Commissioner Peggy Littleton, El Paso Co
- Commissioner Robert Rowland, Elbert Co
- Adams County Treasurer Brigitte Grimm
- Adams County Sheriff Mike McIntosh