State Republican parties struggling

March 24, 2008 at 7:49 PM
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WASHINGTON, March 24 (UPI) -- A handful of state Republican parties, including those in California and New York, reportedly are struggling amid debt, scandal and internal strife.

Many state Republican parties are still recuperating from the 2006 election cycle, when Democrats gained majorities in Congress, The Politico reported Monday.

"After 12 years of being in power, you tend to get fat and lazy, and in some cases arrogant, with respect to your positions," said Saul Anuzis, chairman of the Michigan Republican party. "There is no doubt that we have had people who have gotten caught up in both illegal activities and immoral activities, and none of that helps the party as a whole."

In California, the state GOP has $3.2 million cash on hand but more than $3.4 million in debt. By contrast, the California Democratic Party had $5.5 million in the bank and just $83,000 in debt, The Politico reported.

In New York, a January 2008 state Board of Elections report showed Republicans took in $26,000 and had a closing balance of $395,000.

Political observers said the status of the party's beleaguered state units raises questions about their ability to help Arizona Sen. John McCain, the presumptive GOP presidential nominee, to be elected in November.

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