Acting MNGOP Chair Kelly Fenton announced tonight that Secretary-Treasurer David Sturrock resigned his position today. Sturrock’s role in the party has been heavily scrutinized over the past month as criticism mounted over the party’s debt.
There was heavy speculation among GOP delegates that they may try to remove Sturrock from his position as tomorrow’s State Central Committee meeting. In his resignation letter (below) Sturrock says he wasn’t informed on some key financial decisions that were made over the past two years.
Delegates are scheduled to elect a new chair at tomorrow’s meeting. Tony Sutton abruptly resigned as party chair earlier this month.
Sturrock’s resignation means there is a completely different slate of party officials at the MNGOP heading into 2012.
Deputy Chair Michael Brodkorb resigned in October (Fenton replaced Brodkorb). RNC Committeeman Brian Sullivan and RNC Committeewoman Evie Axdhal announced last January that they were resigning their positions as RNC Committeeman and RNC Committeewoman. (Hennepin County Commissioner Jeff Johnson replaced Sullivan and former State Auditor Pat Anderson replaced Axdahl.)
Here’s Sturrock’s resignation letter:
I am writing to inform you I will be resigning as Secretary-Treasurer of the Republican Party of Minnesota, effective upon the selection of my successor or January 19th, whichever occurs first.
The first and biggest job facing our new Chairman and Deputy Chair is to regain the confidence of activists, donors and voters in our ability to manage party finances. To that end I can offer continuity, experience and institutional memory, but our constituencies will be more interested in clear signs of rebuilding and renewal. A new Secretary-Treasurer will send a powerful message that such change is underway.
Given the work we face the party would do well to have a Secretary-Treasurer who can be present at key meetings, especially those called on short notice. This is a tall order when one lives 160 miles from RPM headquarters. Also, we would benefit from having someone with significant financial management experience. My departure will create the opportunity for such new leaders to emerge.
If future Secretary-Treasurers are to be meaningful assets to the Republican Party they will need to be informed more fully, and consulted more frequently, than has the been case over the past few administrations. In particular, they need to know when the party is entering into major financial commitments. For example, I was neither consulted nor informed about the attorney’s regarding 2010 recount costs. Also, the unreported obligations identified by the current financial review were not known to me. If this resignation ensures that future Secretary-Treasurers receive the access and authority their position merits, then my departure will be a sacrifice happily borne.
A final thought: Never forget you are leaders in the Republican Party. Among other things, leadership means respect, courtesy, and self-restraint. Before you fire off a barbed e-mail or Facebook post, send a snarky tweet, leak a wild, unconfirmed rumor to the press, or phone in your fury to a late-night radio show, ask yourself: “Will this help build my party? Will it advance the conservative agenda?” If the answers are no, stop there. If it feels good, don’t do it.
Thank you for the honor of serving as your Secretary-Treasurer. I am grateful for the chance to be part of our many recent accomplishments. Rest assured I will always be ready to answer the bell and help elect Republicans who will bring strong, principled conservative leadership to a state and country which deeply need them.
David E. Sturrock