What they're saying about Greer, Thrasher
The statements are starting to come out now about RPOF chairman Jim Greer's resignation and plans for Sen. John Thrasher to be elected his successor. A sampling:
House Majority Leader Adam Hasner: "I fully support the choice of Senator John Thrasher as Chairman of the Republican Party of Florida. As former Speaker of the Florida House, he has a proven conservative record of real reform for our state. This is a positive move for the party. Senator Thrasher is well-respected throughout the state and is a unifying voice. He knows how to win tough campaigns and I believe he is the right person to refocus the Republican Party of Florida on the task ahead -- winning elections in November 2010. As Majority Leader of the House and Co-Chair of the RPOF Victory 2010 effort, I look forward to working with him and Republicans across the state over the next year as we take our winning message of conservative reform, job creation and recharging Florida's economy to the voters. With Senator Thrasher’s leadership, we now have put a strong team in place to secure impressive victories in November."
Sen. Don Gaetz: "For more than a year I have been convinced that our state party chairman, Jim Greer, should resign or be replaced. The lessons of history are compelling: when either Democrats or Republicans are arrogant, corrupt or spend recklessly, the voters turn out the party in power and rightly so. As Republicans we should govern like we campaign. As a Republican Party, we should manage our own business like we would manage the public's business. The good news is that John Thrasher is a candidate to replace Jim Greer. I know, admire and trust John. He has an impressive history as a party leader and as a state leader. Among the many examples of his stellar public service is his tenure as Speaker of the House of Representatives, where he was Jeb Bush’s partner in building prosperity in our state’s economy. Recently John was overwhelmingly elected to the Florida Senate. John Thrasher has rock-solid ethics, sky-high personal and professional standards and is a proven, effective, even-handed leader and manager. John Thrasher will make us all proud to be Republicans."
AG Bill McCollum: "I respect Jim Greer for making the difficult decision today to step down as Chairman of the Republican Party of Florida. I appreciate his service and wish Jim and his family the best. The State Executive Committee will soon elect a new Chairman, and I strongly encourage my friend, Senator John Thrasher, to pursue the post and hope our Party members will join me in supporting him. As a former Florida Speaker of the House and current State Senator, John has a distinguished reputation for strong, principled leadership and consensus building. He is the right man at the right time to lead Florida’s Republican candidates to victory in 2010.”
Senate Minority Leader Al Lawson: “I am deeply concerned over the news that a fellow Senator may take over as head of a major political party while maintaining his legislative membership. In a body that has long been known and respected for its collegiality, its decorum, and most of all, its bipartisan independence, a decision to simultaneously remain in this Senate while leading the Republican Party of Florida threatens its very foundation. You cannot serve two masters. Floridians are among the growing numbers of Americans whose cynicism and distrust of government have deepened as scandal followed scandal, and politicians followed their own self interests rather than the interests of the people. A move such as this would only further heighten that alienation. In addition, our own rules not only bar any Senator from raising money for a political party during a legislative session, they also preclude any Senator from allowing personal employment ‘to impair his or her independence of judgment in the exercise of [their] official duties.' "
Florida Democratic Party Chairwoman Karen Thurman: "As Republican Party of Florida Chairman Jim Greer moves on, I would like to wish him all the best in the future and thank him for his service to the political process. As Chairman Greer's counterpart at the Florida Democratic Party, I understand the unique pressures and difficult responsibility of leading one of Florida's two major political parties. While we haven't always seen eye-to-eye, I will sincerely miss our spirited debates."
Florida Federation of Republican Women President Cindy Graves: "On behalf of the Florida Federation of Republican Women, we wish Jim Greer well in all of his future endeavors."
Congressman Alan Grayson of Florida's 8th District: "The resignation of Jim Greer as RPOF Chairman is only a small first step toward ending the culture of corruption that pervades the Republican Party of Florida. $3.6 million in RPOF credit card expenses remain unaccounted for. As Greer has stonewalled on the issue of what happened to all that money, he has become the laughingstock of the Republican Party, and a complete embarrassment to the people of Florida. Florida deserves clean government, but Greer has been the epitome of corruption. He resigns in disgrace, and he is likely to spend the next few years of his life trying to avoid indictment and incarceration."