On Monday afternoon, former Senate Republican Leader, Jim Brulte, announced he will be a candidate for chairman of the California Republican Party (CRP).
According to The Sacramento Bee, Brulte formally announced his candidacy at a conference in San Diego Monday evening, after which he will meet with Republican groups throughout California.
Republican influence is dwindling in California, especially following this past election. Currently, Republicans hold no statewide offices, and Republican registration is down thirty percent throughout the state.
Brulte's decision to hold the conference in San Diego was a strategic move, as the city has long remained a Republican stronghold in southern California. That is, of course, until the city elected Democratic Mayor Bob Filner this past November.
Over three hundred GOP leaders and members of the San Diego County Republican Party's Central Committee were present at the monthly meeting. Brulte elaborated on his plan for the CRP to establish its own statewide funding system, one that is not reliant on "from the top" party funding or legislative leaders.
Brulte further talked about utilizing the "San Diego GOP model" for grassroots activism around the state, adding, "I want to be the nuts and bolts chairman."
Approaching one of the main issues the GOP faces around the nation, Brulte emphasized the selection of candidates for public office. He believes that recruitment of local candidates for office should reflect the "changing demographics in the state."
As Brulte concluded his remarks, San Diego GOP activist, Derrick Roach, motioned for the county to endorse Brulte's bid, which they did unanimously.
“I am thrilled at the strong reception that Jim Brulte received from our committee tonight,” said San Diego Party Chairman Tony Krvaric. "[Jim Brulte] is a well respected, high caliber leader — and we know he will bring strong leadership to the helm of our state party.”
The California Republican platform will not be reconsidered for another three years, though it will require some major changes to its current social platform. Especially, in the realms of immigration and education.
Brulte seems to be on the right path for the GOP, placing an emphasis on selecting "relatable" candidates for local office, not just those who will cater to lobbyists or big business.
Brulte will hit the grassroots circuit extremely hard in coming weeks. He will speak at GOP central committees in Los Angeles, Orange County, Riverside, and San Bernardino County.
When prompted about how long it would take to turn things around, Brulte told the San Francisco Chronicle that it would take "a minimum of six years."
“This is a corporation that is bankrupt," Brulte said. "There is a lot of heavy lifting that needs to be done and we all need to share in doing it.”