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Red State
Red State
22 Jul 2023

NextImg:Michigan GOP Is Functionally Bankrupt, According to Audio Recording of a Closed Meeting

Let’s all take a deep breath before I get into the meat of this article, where I  alert those of you who are residents of the Mitten State and are true Michiganians (and not Michiganders) who happen to be Republicans…

Your party is currently dead and broke.


Two years ago, in 2021, the party was dead but not broke—so look back on those times as the good ole days.

I know some people will dispute this but facts are facts, and feelings are for liberal Democrats.

The bad news was delivered earlier this week in a report here, and it revealed the party is rapidly sinking towards the final resting place of the Edmund Fitzgerald in Lake Superior, cue Gordon Lightfoot.

The Michigan Republican Party has about $93,000 in its bank accounts 16 months before the November 2024 presidential election, a revelation GOP insiders said paints an alarming financial picture for a political party that had full control of state government five years ago.

The leadership team of Michigan Republican Party Chairwoman Kristina Karamo updated the state GOP committee on the party’s budget during a closed-door meeting at the Doherty Hotel in Clare on July 8. The Detroit News obtained a recording of the gathering that one participant described as a “Festivus-style airing of grievances,” complete with verbal feuding, a physical altercation and questions about how the party would be able to pay off its debts.

The discussion pulled back the curtain on details of the Michigan Republican Party’s finances that would normally remain secret and pointed to continued hesitations among longtime funders to open their wallets. While the party has some accounts that must file public reports on their contributors and expenditures, other accounts never have to, making it difficult to determine how much fundraising has occurred.

“What I will confirm right now is that we have $93,231.90 in our accounts,” the state committee’s budget chairman, Dan Bonamie, said at one point during the July 8 meeting. “We have not taken loans out. We are working on the debt.”

The party’s general counsel, Dan Hartman, volunteered during the state committee meeting that the GOP had previously been “threatened with default” on a loan. But Karamo said the state Republican Party was now working “side by side” with the bank.

That last piece of information concurs with what I wrote here back in March, exactly one month after Karamo gave her state of the party analysis, and it looked pretty bleak. Michigan GOP Leader Admits They Are Half Million in Debt and That Is the Good News

“The party is in debt. $460,000,” Karamo said during the Muskegon County event.

“So that is something we’re working through,” she added. “But we do have funding to get started and get our initial operations going. Hopefully, the former chair will be gracious enough to pay that off.”

The former chairman, Ron Weiser, a wealthy real estate businessman from Ann Arbor, decided not to seek another term this year.

The party’s overall debt can be hard to nail down because it has multiple accounts, some that have to be reported publicly and others that don’t.

Asked about the $460,000 in alleged debt, Weiser didn’t refute the number in a Friday statement. But he also gave no indication he would step in to resolve it.

Weiser said he had given more than $5 million to help Republicans win elections for the 2022 cycle. Like other party organizations, there was “a relatively small amount of debt left over that represents less than 4% of total revenues,” Weiser said.

“Given the small percentage involved, I am confident the new administration will be able to utilize the fundraising plan she campaigned on to raise the funds to pay down the line of credit and make Michigan Republicans competitive in 2024,” he added.

So, in just the past four months, they have just under 100k in the bank, have only three full-time employees (Karamo included), and the debt that they inherited is being renegotiated because of lack of money. Also, the party is still up in the air on whether they will hold a caucus, a primary, or a hybrid of both.

The Democrats, on the other hand, are all set with money in the bank—and their primary is all set for Feb 27th of next year.

How in the hell did this fall apart so quickly?

Part of this is because of the overreaction of the grassroots folks who voted for someone inexperienced like Kristina Karamo to run a state party. I fully understand why they were mad and were sick of the mismanagement of the party by people like Ron Weiser and former State GOP Chair Meeshawn Maddock, who got into some trouble last week. Michigan Attorney General Hits Trump’s ‘Fake Electors’ With Fraud Charges

Yet Karamo has made a critical error in shifting from a mix of large and small donors to one that is not working. In the article above, she claimed in 2022 that…

As a candidate for party chair, Karamo vowed to “expand the donor pool by creating a decentralized fundraising system that obtains funding from approximately 500,000 likely-Republican business owners, rather than a handful of millionaire/billionaire class political operatives,” according to a Dec. 18 “vision” document she released.

That clearly is not working.

The national GOP most likely won’t come in and help because each one of the state parties is a different entity from the national one; that is frowned upon unless asked.

How about we say, for a moment, that Donald Trump, who’s currently leading in the polls to win the nomination, might come in and help because Karamo was an early supporter of his?

He won’t.

The Trump campaign will have its hands full being competitive in states like Pennsylvania, Georgia, Arizona, North Carolina, and Wisconsin. They are not going to send valuable dollars into a self-inflicted mess here in Michigan. Plus as I have already opined here before, Michigan is a BLUE STATE and with no functioning party here for Trump to lean on, he won’t waste time here. That means trouble for all races down ticket; those candidates will be on their own to win races.

Trump won Michigan in 2016 by just 11,000 votes out of 4.5 million cast, and he snuck up on Hillary Clinton. He won’t be sneaking up on Democrats now, and the GOP nationally has spent time chasing fraud in 2020 instead of preparing to prevent it on the ground level in 2024.

Democrats took the Clinton loss and prepped for four years.

The Republicans in 2020 let the Democrats roll past them and chased their tail for three years, screaming fraud. What prep has been done—on also using ballot harvesting or voter roll data being correct—to even the playing field?

In Michigan, the GOP elected a person to lead the party who couldn’t concede a clear loss for her Secretary of State run in 2022, and is now whining about people spending time on social media criticizing her lack of results as party chair.

Michigan, I love you, but we are about to enter a long winter of political discontent.

If anyone has former Governor John Engler’s number, please have him call me to beg him to come out of retirement.

l love you all, and if you have any questions, comments, or concerns, you can hit me up here at my bio and let me know what you think. Even if you think I suck.