Skip to comments.Russell Accuses State Republican Party Chairman of Collusion (PA-12)
Posted on 03/24/2010 11:09:55 AM PDT by smoothsailing
by David Croyle
Harrisburg is talking about last nights cable show in Kittanning where the Republican candidate for the 12th Congressional District accused the state Republican Party chairman of collusion.
Bill Russell ran two years ago against John Murtha in his last election in 2008, raising $3.6 million and earning an impressive 42 percent of the vote. Following his loss, Russell announced he would run against him again.
Since Murthas unexpected death on February 8, a special election will now be held simultaneously with the Primary on May 18. However, while Russell is already on the Republican ticket for the May primary, Republican insiders rejected him as their candidate to run against Murtha staffer Democrat Mark Critz of Johnstown in the special election. Although Russell already has a district-wide organization in place and excellent name recognition from his last campaign, the GOP conferees voted by a 2-1 margin for Tim Burns from Eighty Four, Pennsylvania in Washington County to run in the special election.
Russell, appearing on Family-Life TVs Talk of the Town, criticized state Republican Chairman Rob Gleason.
Unfortunately weve got a state Republican chairman who has a direct conflict of interest and really had no interest in, one, either defeating Jack Murtha when he was in Congress or, two, in taking that seat, Russell said, referring to Gleasons ownership of an insurance agency. His direct personal interest is in keeping that the status quo. The direct financial interest is the fact that his insurance company writes the insurance policies for many of the companies Mr. Murtha used to bring in, and he has a vested interest in keeping the status quo for that. It is really unfortunate because, one, he has a vested financial interest in going against the Republican party, two, in a recent news interview, he attacked me for doing too well in the 2008 election because that caused Jack to bring out the Democratic forces including Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton for six robo calls,and Barack Obama. With the turnout of the Democratic electorate to save Mr. Murthas seat, he says that actually led him to lose a state legislature seat. So he was angry with me for doing too well against Mr. Murtha.
D. Patrick Mahoney in The Washington Times yesterday also criticized Gleason and conferees, alleging Burns financial fortune that tops nine figures will enable him to self-fund his campaign and also contribute to other campaigns as well.
Its an unfortunate reality of whats going on. As unhappy as people may be about what is going on in Washington, we cant change things in Washington if we dont first change the way we do things here in Pennsylvania. With the populist support I have had, I was 30 points ahead in the polls in the Republican running, Im the largest non-incumbent fund raiser in the nation, but yet they chose somebody else with a 7% name recognition.
Because the special election will be held at the same time as the states Primary election, it will be possible for Burns to actually win and occupy the seat from May until November while Russell wins the Republican nod in the Primary. If Russell wins the Primary and also the General election in November, he could still become the 12th Congressional Districts choice.
Russell, a retired 82nd Airborne officer and Iraq War veteran, seemed undaunted by the politics surrounding the special election.
My focus right now is running in the Primary and winning the November election, Russell said.
I am a conservative. I believe in the sovereignty and security of this one nation, under God. I believe in the sanctity of life and that life begins at conception. I believe in marriage between one man and one woman. I believe that all children in our school systems should be educated in English and taught the civic duties and responsibilities of citizenship and patriotism. I believe that we have the responsibility and obligation to control our borders and determine who is allowed to live and work in our country. I believe in private property rights and that the death tax should be killed. I believe government economic policies should reward those who build business or save and invest their money. I believe in the right to bear arms and the right of self defense. I believe in rugged individualism and that no one owes me anything just because I live and breathe. I believe we should all practice charity in some form or fashion, especially to those who are suffering and least fortunate. But charity must be voluntary and spring from a spirit of altruism and love for your neighbor. I believe that imposed systems of wealth redistribution destroy families, produce a culture of dependence and hurt everyone. Finally, I believe there is room to acknowledge the role of our Creator in public life as stated in the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution. ---Bill Russell in his own words .
Its time to call out the Tea Party people and prevent the usual gang of idiots in the GOP from forming another circular firing squad.
Its time to call out the Tea Party people and prevent the usual gang of idiots in the GOP from forming another circular firing squad.
Didn’t Russell just play games with Pia Varma (young Conservative) to get her off the ballot there? (claiming she wasn’t a resident because she rented a room from someone else instead of owning her own home and also trying, and succeeding, in getting half her ballot petition signatures thrown out because a notary made a mistake on a date in her stamp?)
Russell is being railroaded by the GOP.
I’ve given to him and I encourage all of you too, as well. Also, call of the PA GOP and yell at them.
I’m in another part of the state..but that didn’t stop me from contributing to him before. And it won’t stop me now. We have to clean out all the houses but the cleaning starts at home.
Contact me to be added to ping list.
I have no idea what you’re talking about, can you source your post?
The party bosses still don’t have a clue. They might yet screw up the election and leave Democrats in the majority.
No, that was in the First District. Bill Russell had nothing to do with Pia Varma.
My bad, that’s what I get trying to do this from memory.
It was Bob Brady, not Bill Russell. One of his campaign workers was a real douche to her, cursing her out on her Facebook page and mocking her.
Still, good info for the Russell camp to know re how the party there plays games.
You are right, see 13.
No other Republican in Pennsylvania has the guts to do what Bill Russell is doing, just like no other Republican had the guts to run against Murtha in 2008.
Bill Russell is showing everyone in Pennsylvania what a conservative looks like, they’re an endangered species here.
Maybe Palin could set some time aside from supporting the RINO McCain and give Russell a boost.
Thanks, it’s easy to get confused, I do it often. :-)
S’OK! You really had me scratching my head! :)
This is a Pack Of Lies and some of the worst burn donw the house strategy by SORE LOSER Russell.
Burns is a TEA PARTY Conservative ACTIVIST and not a GOP insider and he is a true local resident .
he won the GOP based on PA state law for special election based on votes of a hundred of local delegates open to the public .
Russell is not even from PA but moved there to take on Murtha.
There are no Local primaries for a Special Election seat because PA state laws.
No state in the USA has a primary for special election this close to the Midterm primaries.
The counties can not afford to finance TWO primaries in
4 month period. A single primary costs over 100,000 or more and the midterm primary will be in a few months.
Russel and hi minions are trying to Prevent Burns from Winning because Russel would have to try to unseat an incumbent in three months !
this is pathetic dirty politics which is meant to get the dem elected .
Nice thought. But just a thought, I’m afraid.
You know the fact that there is no railroading .
Russel is a sore loser and peddling a pack of lies to prevent Burns from becoming the incumbent in the upcoming midterm elections.
Exactly...Bill Russell faced Murtha when no one else would. He’s done his homework, built a campsign base and Gleason pulls the rug out from under him.
Typical of Gleason after not supporting Diana Irey or Bill Russell in prior elections against Murtha.
Why are you trolling Russell threads for Burns votes?
Yesterday morning you didn’t even know Russell’s name.
This is not the truth
Russel is sad pathetic SORE LOSER .
Burns is a local tea party activist, a conservative ,and a true PA local.
Burns won the local special election delegate vote by a hundreds of people .That is PA state law for special elections .
No one has a full blown primary for special elections since its a huge taxpayer expense.
Russel needs to stand down and divide the vote on purpose !
I would love to see Irey jump back in. She was very popular on FR, unfortunately, that campaign took a big financial toll on her.
I am not spreading lies and propaganda about Burns .
I am just making sure the Russel smear strategy is
shut down .
Its a disgrace.
Which tea party groups does Burns represent/work with?
Also, you said Burns won by “..a hundreds...”
Was it “a hundred” or “hundreds”?
Yes, I liked Irey a lot also. She was on Quinn and Rose’s show a lot back then. I think she knew Rose somehow. I take exception to smoothsailings characterization as Bill Russell being the only one to ever take on Murtha. Irey ran a tough campaign against him and didn’t let up on any punches. I don’t want to disparage Russell. I like him. But right now he is being selfish and needs to just run for the primary win and quit whining about the process to take the rest of Murtha’s term.
The vote was Burns 85 to Russell's 46.
Here's a post of yours from yesterday morning.
Because this Russert LOST BEFORE and never Lived in the district and ran a crummy campaign.
Russert needs to grow up and move on.
15 posted on Tuesday, March 23, 2010 5:14:40 AM by ncalburt (e)
Who are you talking about, Tim Russert? He's dead, Jim.
One other thing, it seems to me that Russell is trying to make out that this is like the Hoffman/Scozzafava situation up in New York. It is nothing like it. He has a chance to run in the primary just like everyone else. The state was not going to have a special election so close to the regular primary. That would have been a waste of money and there would not have been a good turnout anyways.
>> I am just making sure the Russel smear strategy is shut down .
Dude, get lost.
I'm surprised this should be such a controversy. It seems that party rules should be clear as to when to call a special election. For example, in New Mexico, you have to get above 20% of a vote like this to be on a ballot, if only one person gets above 20%, a special election is not needed unless the other party can get a certain amount of signatures. If the rules are similar it seems Russell has a very strong case here.
Yes, I don’t know all the rules in PA on special elections, I live in WA. Smoothsailing is up on this and was at the meeting where the conferees voted.
There was a hit piece against Russell yesterday and it sounds like it started a lot of rumors against him.
Russell has a legitimate gripe with PA Republicans, especially Rob Gleason, IMO. But Russell is running in the primary against Burns and I believe will beat Burns.
Actually Col. Russell wished Burns luck in the special election. And that’s a fact. He half-joking said he might wtite himself in at a town hall meeting in Indiana, PA, both he and Burns were there and the crowd laughed. He also said he’d vote for Burns should Burns be on the ballot in November.
Alot of the reporting on this has been taken out of context, or in some cases distorted by partisan commenters.
I volunteered for Diana’s campaign, I live in the district. Both Irey and Russell ran virtually unopposed in their respective primaries. There has not been a competitive Republican primary in the 12th CD in years.
You say Russell is being selfish, I say Russell is being honest and courageous. And guess what, Gleason created the situation the Republican party here finds itself in, not Russell. Russell just wants clean politics and honest party officials.
So do I.
Here we go. Murtha’s rigormortis has barely set in and we’ve got the Chiefs leaving town and Republicans fighting with each other.
Run along now, we’ll call you if we need you.
LOL! Ah, the good old days!
BTW, where are the Chiefs headed? I havn't checked up on Johnstown sports news lately.
The Republican primary will be a real shootout, I look forward to it.
As for being upset, not me. I respect Russell for what he’s doing now and what he’s done all of his life.
We could do worse than Burns,that’s a fact, but we’ll probably never have another opportunity to elect a man of the caliber of Bill Russell.
Semper Fi, Marine
I’m with Russell. No reason for him to keep his mouth shut. He’s right.
You either know nothing, or are just making it up as you go along.
The truth hurts.
Can you elaborate on your words?
Good post. We need more Republicans willing to stand up to the Gleason good-ole-boy gang.
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