Two political experts are contending to lead the Utah Republican Party as the brand-new state celebration chair.
GOP state celebration delegates will select in between Rob Axson or Mike Bird when they collect April 22 at Utah Valley University. Both males have experience serving in celebration management, a circumstance various from 2 years earlier when political neophyte Carson Jorgensen won the position.
Jorgensen revealed previously this month he would not look for reelection. Axson and Bird were the only ones to state prior to Thursday’s filing due date.
In an interview with Deseret News, Axson said he thinks he can help Republicans browse the difficulties and opportunities facing the celebration and the state.
“The Republican Party has a role to play, as one of many organizations in the state, trying to find ways to create and build a vision for the future,” he said. Axson said he has actually operated in positions in the celebration, projects and as a staffer for chosen authorities for over 15 years. He said this experience has actually offered him a “unique skill set” that will help him “deliver a bold, transformative vision for what the party can become that will benefit the people of Utah.”
Axson has actually worked for Sen. Mike Lee for more than a years and presently runs Lee’s state workplace. He said he’s aided with over 20 projects throughout the state and has actually acted as a member of the Republican Party State Central Committee for a variety of years. Additionally, he formerly acted as the GOP state celebration vice chair from 2020 to 2021 under the management of previous celebration chair Derek Brown, where he likewise served with Bird who is the state celebration treasurer.
Bird was the very first to launch his campaign for state celebration chair and formerly informed the Deseret News he is keeping up 3 concerns in mind: “Growing the party, increasing our influence and keeping Utah red.”
“This is my fourth year serving as treasurer and I’m happy to say we are debt free and have money in the bank,” he said. But Bird said he is fretted that the state’s population is growing at a quicker rate than celebration subscription. “We’ve kind of lost track of growing our party. We need to refocus our time, energy and resources on getting new members, and in turn we need to educate them and train them and get them more involved,” he said.
Bird works as a financing and operations director for University of Utah Health and has actually acted as the Utah Republican Party treasurer given that 2019, with experience as a member of both the Brown and Jorgensen management groups. He is likewise a member of the celebration’s State Central Committee, the State Executive Committee and the Budget Committee.
Both Axson and Bird mentioned a requirement for continual celebration “momentum.”
“There’s 30 Republican parties in the state of Utah,” Axson said, referencing each of Utah’s counties and the state celebration. “There’s a meaningful opportunity if each of us builds together so we’re not duplicating efforts and in the process create relevance for the party by building out structures to support our candidates,” he said.
Bird pointed out the disturbance that can occur with celebration management turnover. “We create so much momentum as a party leadership, and then unfortunately we constantly have turnover,” he said. “I can keep that momentum and create the consistency we need to accomplish and finish the initiatives we’ve set out to accomplish as a party.”
Neither of the males slammed one another, stating they’ve dealt with each other for a very long time and think about each other good friends. Jorgensen likewise spoke well of both of them. “Rob and Mike are phenomenal, we can’t ask for better candidates to run the party. I trust them both implicitly,” he said.
Bird said it’s excellent for the state delegates to have management options so a conversation can happen on what they wish to see in the future for the celebration. “I think (Rob) and I both have a little bit different visions of where our focus should be as a state party right now,” he said.
He likewise said he thinks the GOP has actually forgotten “the reason we’re in business.” Bird said he wishes to “restructure’ the state party so it is better oriented “to educate, to recruit and to win elections.”
Axson likewise applauded his challenger however feels he is more “prepared” to lead the celebration. “I have a 15 year track record of fighting for the party, winning elections and raising funds, so by electing me the delegates know what they’re going to get.”
State delegates can learn more about each of the GOP state celebration chair prospects’ platforms by visiting their sites at RobAxson.com and ElectMikeBird.com.
Other prospects for GOP state celebration management
As of the filing due date, Jordan Hess is the only prospect running for vice chair, a workplace he is presently serving in.
Olivia Dawn, the present celebration secretary, has actually likewise submitted to run for re-election. Challenging her for the position are Nicholas Compton and Stafford Palmieri.
McKay Newell, Patrick Russo and Thomas Young have actually each submitted to campaign for the GOP state treasurer seat left by Bird.