For a guy who has had a majority of the GOP’s Executive Committee pledge to remove him as Chairman on Thursday night, Jack Kimball sure does seem confident, doesn’t he?
Well, that’s because according to numerous Republican sources, Kimball and his closest allies have a clearly defined strategy to prevent the vote from even being held … with contingency plans to win the vote if his Plan A fails.
As one top level Republican leader said to NH Journal of Kimball, “he’s like Qaddafi, this guy. He doesn’t know when his time is up.”
Sources tell NH Journal that despite Kimball’s repeated assurances last week that he will abide by the Executive Committee’s decision about his future, he actually intends to use state party funds to retain a so-called “super parliamentarian” to govern the vote to remove him at the special meeting of the GOP’s executive board. The main purpose of this “super parliamentarian” will be to argue that the Executive Committee doesn’t have a right to remove the Chairman and that there is no legitimate line of succession should he be removed. Kimball’s allies have been pouring over the GOP’s bylaws to find loopholes and tripwires to prevent the vote from taking place. As of this posting the identity of Kimball’s “super parliamentarian” remains a mystery.
Kimball’s main argument will be that the federal delegation called the meeting without enough time for Kimball to mount a proper defense and without specifically itemizing Kimball’s alleged removable offenses. Kimball will also argue that the delegation doesn’t have standing to call for Kimball’s ouster because only their designated representatives, who were to have been so designated in a written letter to the Republican State Committee, serve on the Executive Committee. Kimball will argue that members of the delegation submitted no such letters.
Furthermore, the Kimball forces point out that the Party’s bylaws detail no line of succession if a Chairman is removed; only one if a Chairman dies or resigns. There simply is no precedent for deposing a Chairman.
Many elements of this strategy were revealed in a press release issued by Chris Buck, a close confidante of Kimball’s and the Communications Chair of the Strafford County Republican Committee.
Kimball’s arguments seem weak. NH Journal has learned that the delegation in fact submitted letters designating their representatives to the Executive Committee months ago. And Kimball has recognized them as voting members numerous times on other matters. What’s more, the delegation issued the letter announcing their intent to remove Kimball within the required five-day window before the meeting. And the argument about a clear line of succession is irrelevant; the Executive Committee has the power to fill any vacancy.
Recognizing their Plan A is a long shot, Kimball and his team have prepared a parallel strategy to begin disqualifying members of the Executive Committee from voting and forcing them to abstain or recuse themselves.
For example, Kimball will again argue that the federal delegation cannot vote to remove him. He will also argue that Jennifer Wrobleski must recuse herself as it was her husband Will whom Kimball fired as the current turmoil was coming to a head (Mrs. Wrobleski is the Chair of the Merrimack County GOP). In addition, Kimball will argue that Vice Chairman Wayne MacDonald cannot vote, as MacDonald stands to benefit from Kimball’s removal. One by one, Kimball’s forces are preparing a case for why each of the current Chairman’s foes cannot vote.
“It has gotten so ugly over the last 24 hours,” one source told NH Journal. “I can’t even tell you.”
Executive Committee members are prepared for a long, brutal and contentious meeting.
NH Journal has learned that Kimball’s lone staff loyalist Christine Baratta will be terminated as the Party’s Communications Director within minutes of the Kimball vote if the effort to oust him is successful. There has also been discussion among some Executive Committee members about the need for police presence at the Thursday night meeting in the event Kimball is successfully removed. Some are beginning to wonder if the GOP will need to obtain an injunction to prevent Kimball from simply ignoring a vote to remove him and continuing to act as the Chairman of the GOP.
And in yet another explosive revelation in a story filled with them, NH Journal has learned that the Republican National Committee is watching the controversy with growing unease and has even conducted internal discussions about suspending the New Hampshire Republican State Committee’s charter until the matter is finally resolved.
Meanwhile, a group of the requisite fifty members of the entire Republican State Committee have submitted a signed petition to the Chairman calling for a new meeting of the whole Republican Party on September 10th to elect a new Chairman. They argue that the decision to remove a Chairman should not be left to such a small, close-knit body, but rather to the entire party apparatus; the same people who elected Kimball in January.
It is now possible Kimball could be ousted by the Executive Committee on September 1st and win his seat back by a vote of the entire Republican State Committee nine days later.
All Executive Committee meetings are open to the press and public.