by Sandy Klein
This past weekend
I went as a delegate to the Missouri state republican convention.
After many years of being a proud non-voter, in January I registered
to vote only because I wanted to be involved if Ron Paul had a chance
of winning. Except for meeting and becoming friends with other liberty
lovers in town, I regret my entire involvement. The local caucus,
the congressional district convention, and the state convention
were all long, stupid pep rallies for republicans to replace their
identical twin democrats in office, as if that would make any difference.
For this weekend's
state convention, we had to arrive at 7:30 AM for registration and
then wait, squished in, shoulder-to-shoulder for the convention
to start (nearly a half hour late) at almost 10. First, we were
subjected to a video message from Rick Santorum, urging us to unify
behind Romney. That was followed by campaign speeches by the three
republicans running for Senate against Claire McCaskill. All of
the speeches were of course filled with empty platitudes, (my personal
favorite was "the status quo has got to go!") but nothing about
sound money or ending the wars. Next we had to elect officers of
the convention including chairman and secretary, and this apparently
required three minute speeches in support of each candidate -- one
person claimed that voting for one person to serve as convention
secretary was a vote to revitalize the republican party. Puh-leeze,
isn't this person just going to take the minutes?
agenda called for a recess for lunch from noon until 2:00 but we
were so far behind schedule that some time after 1:00 it was motioned
that we recess for lunch for one hour. But then when a known Paul
delegate suggested that an hour wasn't long enough for the nearly
2,000 delegates to get lunch and that the recess ought to be at
least 90 minutes, the Rom-torum delegates took nearly 45 minutes
arguing over the length of lunch and requiring a standing vote (rather
than voice vote). This was similar to the Boone county caucus when
the rules committee needed a recess to convene for 10 minutes and
the crowd debated for over 30 minutes whether or not to allow the
recess. It was decided that we would vote on the slates of 25 at-large
delegates to Tampa before lunch. One slate had 19 pledged to Romney
and 6 to Santorum and the other than 16 for Paul and the other 9
for Santorum. If the Santorum supporters had voted where they earned
more delegates, the Paul slate would have won and denied any more
delegates to Romney. Alas, Santorum supporters didn't get that 9
is greater than 6, and the Romney slate won by a narrow margin.
After the vote,
the convention broke for a 90 minute lunch with the idea of reconvening
for a second session to discuss the Missouri republican platform.
The small group with me all agreed that the platform discussion
is a waste of time because nobody elected ever sticks to their campaign
promises. We ate lunch and left town.
If I could
un-register to vote, I would do so immediately. I want nothing to
do with any of the whole process ever again. I'd prefer to concentrate
instead on enjoying life with my husband and three children, playing
my banjo, and taking in the view.
Klein [send her mail]
is Adjunct Assistant Professor of Economics at the University of
Missouri and Associated Scholar of the Ludwig von Mises Institute.
© 2012 by LewRockwell.com. Permission to reprint in whole or in
part is gladly granted, provided full credit is given.