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High-profile GOP Horner supporters punished by state party because some think he cost Emmer the election

Republicans who supported Tom Horner for governor will be punished by the state GOP Party with a two-year ban from being party delegates or attending the 2012 national convention.

Party delegates on Saturday narrowly voted — 59-55 — to approve the ban on 18 party members, including former Govs. Al Quie and Arne Carlson and former U.S. Sen. Dave Durenberger, reported MPR.

Some delegates felt the punishment was warranted, because the defection to Independence Party candidate Horner cost Republican candidate Tom Emmer many votes, and possibly the election; after the recount, it’s expected that DFLer Mark Dayton will win the race by nearly 9,000 votes.

Other delegates, though, thought the ban mighr look vindictive. Delegate Jen De Journett of Maple Grove said:

“Even if we pass this motion, we can’t exactly take away a former governor’s title. We can’t vote people out who may or may not live in this state and we’re going to look like a bunch of goofballs.”

MPR listed the 18 banned Republicans:

  • Arne Carlson
  • Al Quie
  • George Pillsbury
  • Peggy Leppik
  • Neil Peterson
  • Dennis Ozment
  • Roger Scherer
  • David Jennings
  • Ed Oliver
  • Lynne Osterman
  • Dave Bishop
  • Bill Schreiber
  • Art Seaberg
  • Rod Searle
  • Dave Durenberger
  • Doug Kelley
  • Joanell Drystad
  • Al Olson

State Party Chair Tony Sutton said it may be hard to enforce the ban but that it shouldn’t hurt the party image.

“I get frustrated because a lot of people on that list only come out and say they’re Republicans when the want to stick it to Republicans,” Sutton said. “The rest of the time they say they’re an independent or a Democrat and support nothing but Democrats.

Comments (19)

  1. Submitted by Sheila Ehrich on 12/06/2010 - 12:46 pm.


    I would be pretty hesitent to come out and call myself a Republican, if I were one, with you at the head of the Party. I’m sure that many of those on your list as well as others within the Party feel the same way. Your disdain for Freedom of Speech certainly shines through in the actions taken this weekend.

  2. Submitted by Eric Schubert on 12/06/2010 - 01:07 pm.


  3. Submitted by Thomas Swift on 12/06/2010 - 01:12 pm.

    Over the past couple of years, Arne Carlson & his ilk have made it very clear that they are uncomfortable with the conservative values of the Republican party.

    Compassion required they be relieved of the duty of associating themselves with us.

  4. Submitted by Brian Simon on 12/06/2010 - 01:41 pm.

    “we’re going to look like a bunch of goofballs.”


  5. Submitted by Zoey Mann on 12/06/2010 - 01:48 pm.

    Pathetic and petty. Just because someone doesn’t agree with you does not mean you are “better” and should “ban” people from speaking freely at events that support your own party! How can the GOP be expected to lead when they are acting like petty children?

  6. Submitted by Thomas Swift on 12/06/2010 - 02:44 pm.

    “How can the GOP be expected to lead when they are acting like petty children?”

    Paging Randy Kelly; paging Joe Lieberman.

    Please come to the white courtesy phone; your party is waiting with your apologies.

  7. Submitted by Lynda Friedman on 12/06/2010 - 02:54 pm.

    I suppose it is now necessary to rewrite the history of the Republican Party in Minnesota to reflect its changed values. Perhaps former elected officials could have letters attached to their names signaling that the current Republican Party has no intention of being associated with them. I suggest: Al Quie, BCV (Before Conservative Values) or Joanell Drystad, NOOU (Not One of Us). Why would a political party too conservative for Arne Carlson and “his ilk” want to show respect for the past or care about the opinions of its elders?

  8. Submitted by Dan Hintz on 12/06/2010 - 03:29 pm.

    Say, Swifty?

    There is a difference between running against a candidate in a primary, and banning him or her outright. Neither Lieberman nor Kelly were banned. Lieberman lost the Democratic primary and then left the party to run as an independent. Kelly lost a non-partisan election to another Democrat. Granted, Democratic voters were not too happy with Lieberman and Kelly because of actions that were perceived as disloyal to the party, but that is what primaries are for. In comparison, what the Republicans have done in banning a former governor, a former U.S. Senator, and a number of former legislators and influential Republicans is just juvenile.

  9. Submitted by Bill Kellett on 12/06/2010 - 04:36 pm.

    Nothing new for Arnie, the Republican governor unwelcome at the party’s state convention. To be the party of mean and petty would seem to be enough of a burden without advertising the fact.

  10. Submitted by Hénock Gugsa on 12/06/2010 - 04:54 pm.

    Two things …

    1.- Is this ban kind of a younger brother of an “Enemies’ List?” Ghost of RMN hovers here.

    2. – Are we going to be hearing of more purges from the Minnesota Republican Party? Are they “Suttonly” coming to their senses?! 🙂

  11. Submitted by Greg Kapphahn on 12/06/2010 - 05:16 pm.

    More and more, the current Republican party leadership in Minnesota reveals its Stalinesque authoritarian tendencies.

    When will rest of Minnesota Republicans attend their precinct caucuses in sufficient numbers to take back their party from those who have no connection to what “Republican,” in it’s more honest and honorable days, once meant.

  12. Submitted by Tom Horner on 12/06/2010 - 06:19 pm.

    In related news, Chair Sutton announced that he would suspend recognition of Boston as an American city as long as a “certain number 5 plays for that city’s basketball team.” He also said that as far as he is concerned a food company’s icon will now be known as “Mr. Doughboy” among Republicans. Finally, he said he will identify all the waiters and waitresses who voted against Mr. Emmer following the candidate’s tip credit fiasco and ban them from party activities. “We are the party of Main Street, not the party of $100,000-a-year turncoats.”

    In unrelated news, the Republican Party announced that it will be sending contribution solicitations to Horner’s donors in case anyone wants to make amends.

  13. Submitted by Ann Richards on 12/06/2010 - 06:43 pm.

    Now it is official, the last of the moderates are now purged from that tiny tent.

  14. Submitted by Mark Heuring on 12/06/2010 - 07:19 pm.

    Stalinesque? My goodness — where does Sutton keep the Gulag, then?

    The DFL gets to define itself on its own terms. Not sure why Republicans shouldn’t be afforded the same courtesy.

  15. Submitted by larry boss on 12/06/2010 - 08:28 pm.

    Oh you can bet that the MNGOP has a “Enemies” list. Let’s hope that the GOP doesn’t “Suttonly” come to their senses. A change of GOP leadership would make them harder to defeat in 2012.

  16. Submitted by Richard Schulze on 12/06/2010 - 09:00 pm.

    My grandfather used to say: “that when you start to point fingers at someone else, you always have three fingers that are pointed back at yourself.”

    Own it, embrace it and move on…..

  17. Submitted by Greg Kapphahn on 12/07/2010 - 07:18 am.

    If they thought they could get away with creating a gulag and imprisoning these men in it, they would do so.

    As it is, all they can do is send them out into the Siberian winter where the rest of us live while they, themselves bask in the warm glow of their own echo chamber, as carefully sealed from facts, reality, and any outside influences as it’s possible to make it with current technology.

  18. Submitted by Lynda Friedman on 12/07/2010 - 10:42 am.

    Thanks, Tom Horner for a good humored twist on a serious subject. Unfortunately, I am afraid many of Horner’s donors will cave to pressure and still donate to the “party formerly known as Republican”.

  19. Submitted by donald maxwell on 12/07/2010 - 10:09 pm.

    Congratulations, Peggy, you are in quite distinguished company.

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