The Summit County GOP has set the date for their Chairperson election. This Wednesday, April 30, the Central Committee votes by secret ballot.
Much of the politicking in these things is done behind the scenes so a party outsider like myself has little to go on (and the two sides have stopped emailing me, apparently tired of me mocking them both.) Ben Keeler, a local blogger active within the Coughlin camp, says that as best he can tell no one has a firm head count. Ben will try to offer on-scene reports next Wednesday night.
If it looks tied going in, Alex will win. As noted before, TeamCoughlin needs to convince the wobblers that he can win. I don't think anyone has faith that the secret ballot will actually remain secret if Alex wins.
All of which makes TeamCoughlin's latest public statement smell of desperation. Calling on someone to resign days before an election just sounds silly. But it's nice to know that Coughlin stands for cleaning up high school Spanish clubs.
Meanwhile, yesterday's ABJ fronted a major preview story along with a sidebar timeline yesterday about the dispute. Among other things, the story offers one answer to what happened to bring Arshinkoff so close to losing his seat:
- But at some point in the last 10 years or so, Arshinkoff's adversaries claim, he changed.
They said he didn't deliver on promises in local campaigns. He cut off ties to his closest allies. He stopped listening to input.
"He's a different person," said Hoover, who was angered over Arshinkoff's handling of his unsuccessful campaign for county executive and his failed bid for county prosecutor.
"I don't really understand him. I have firsthand experience of him not keeping his word."
Whatever happens, the final battle will not be the end of the story. Certainly if Alex retains his seat, his first priority will be vengeance upon those who sought to bring him down. Imagine a political equivalent of the last twenty minutes of any of the three Godfather movies. If TeamCoughlin wins, they will no doubt engage in some level of housecleaning, as they did (pending a court challenge) at the Board of Elections.
The result will be a weakened though possibly renewed Republican Party come this fall. And no one knows quite what that will mean.