Van Werven to run for state Republican chair

Posted by Ralph Schwartz on August 2, 2013 

Luanne Van Werven is getting a lot of play on the blog this week, but at the risk of overexposure I decided to let you know that the former Whatcom County Republican chairwoman officially declared her intent to run for chair of the Washington State Republican Party.

This came across the airwaves today:

Dear Members of the State Committee,

This week certainly took an unexpected turn. When I woke up on Monday morning I did not expect that, by the end of the day, I would be the WSRP Interim-Chair, but I knew when I ran to be your Vice Chair that I needed to be prepared for this eventuality. With your votes cast in January, you placed your trust in me and in my ability to execute the duties of our Chair should the need arise. And it now has.

I believe that quickly electing a permanent chair is best for the party and will provide stability and a smoother transition. There is no time to lose; we need to get busy building the party and providing a solid financial base.

And so I have decided to run for the position of permanent Chair of the WSRP.

I hope you know by now that I am not afraid to work hard, and hard work is what we need.

I’m not going to wait until after the election to start reaching out to donors. In fact, as Interim-Chair, I have already begun. Our financial situation is serious but not dire. It is the chief duty of the Chair to raise funds to support our efforts; please rest assured that this is my top priority.

On Wednesday, I spent the day at the Bellevue office and met individually with each staff member; each one is very capable and working hard on our behalf. I have tasked Executive Director Caleb Heimlich with finding efficiencies at the Bellevue headquarters so that we can run a more lean operation. I appreciate the contributions of each staff member, and am excited to see what we can accomplish together.

I am grateful for the support that many of you have already expressed, and I look forward to earning the confidence of the rest. We must come together and strive for success as a united front, lest we become divided, broken and ineffective.

I am counting on you to be a key member of the team that brings the WSRP to new heights. Our best days are ahead! You placed your confidence in me just 8 months ago, and I ask you to do so again. Please cast your vote for Luanne Van Werven for WSRP Chair.

In unity,

Luanne Van Werven
Washington State Republican Party


Does the vice chair, now interim chair, have the inside track to the position? Perhaps not, with names like Rob McKennaDino Rossi and former TV anchor Susan Hutchison being tossed around as possible candidates.

The libertarian wing of the state Republicans will also have a voice in who becomes the next party chair.

We will report the results of the state party's election, scheduled for Aug. 24 at a regularly scheduled state committee meeting in Spokane.

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