-
RSS Follow Become a Fan

Recent Posts

Q&A with Sen. Tom Cotton
Q&A with Sen. Ron Wyden
Q&A with Rep. Louie Gohmert
Q&A with Rep. Ted Lieu
Q&A with Sen. Tim Scott

Categories

Adam Kinzinger
Adam Weigold
Affordable Care Act
Agenda 21
Ajit Pai
Al DeKruif
ALEC
Al-Qaeda
American Enterprise Institute
American Legislative Exchange Council
America's Future Foundation
Amy Koch
Andrea Kieffer
Andrea Mitchell
Androids
Ann Coulter
Apple
Arlen Specter
Arne Carlson
Atlas Shrugged
Bad Legislators
Bad Republicans
Barack Obama
Barbara Banian
Bashar al-Assad
Ben Ginsberg
Ben Golnik
Ben Wiener
Benghazi
Beth Cobert
Bill Jungbauer
Bill Paxon
Bill Pulkrabek
Bitcoin
Bloopers
Bob Barr
Bob Corker
Bob Davis
Bob Gunther
Bobby Joe Champion
Book Reviews
Branden Petersen
Brandon Petersen
Brandon Sawalich
Brian Johnson
Bron Scherer
Brookings Institution
Budget Control Act
Carla Nelson
Cass Sunstein
Cato Institute
Caucuses
CCHF
Chamber of Commerce
Charles Chaput
Charlie Rangel
China
Chip Cravaack
Chris McDaniel
Christine O'Donnell
Christopher Painter
Civil Forfeiture
Claire Robling
Climate Change
Common Cause
CREW
Cybersecurity
Cynthia Lummis
Dan Hall
Dan Severson
Dave Brat
Dave Senjem
David Fitzsimmons
David Sturrock
Department of Justice
Department of Labor
Diane Johnson
Diane Rehm
Dick Armey
Donald Trump
DrudgeReport
Ed Morrissey
Education
Edward True
edX
Elijah Cummings
Erick Erickson
Erika Harold
Evie Axdahl
FBI
FCC
FEC
Federal Budget
Federal Communications Commission
Francesca Chambers
FreedomWorks
Gambling
Gay Marriage
General Electric
Geoff Michel
Global Warming
Good Legislators
Greg Davids
Growth & Opportunity
Growth and Opportunity Report
Haley Barbour
Harry Reid
Henry Barbour
Heritage Foundation
Hilda Solis
House Amendment 111
Iowa Caucus
Iowa Republican Party
Iran
IRS
ISIS
Jabhat al-Nusra
Jake Duesenberg
Janet Beihoffer
Jason Chaffetz
Jason Lewis
Jeff Bingaman
Jeff Flake
Jeff Johnson
Jeff Sessions
Jeh Johnson
Jim Abeler
Jim Oberstar
Jim Taylor
Joe Scarborough
John Blatnik
John Boehner
John Chafee
John Cornyn
John Gilmore
John Howe
John King
John Kline
John Kriesel
John McCain
John Nolte
John Yoo
Jonathan Merritt
Josh McKoon
Julianne Ortman
Julie Rosen
Justin Amash
Katrina Pierson
Keith Downey
Keith Ellison
Kelly Fenton
Keystone XL
King Banaian
KTLK
Kurt Bills
Kurt Daudt
Kurt Zellers
Labor Department
Laura Ingraham
Lee Goodman
Liberal Republicans
LightSquared
Linda Killian
LookTrueNorth
Loretta Lynch
Lost Generation
Louie Gohmert
Marco Rubio
Margaret Cavanagh
Marianne Stebbins
Mark Buesgens
Mark Dayton
Mark Foley
Mark Kennedy
Mark Meadows
Martin O'Malley
Marty Seifert
Mary Franson
Maryland
Matt Dean
Matthew Feeney
Media Bias
Mercatus Center
Michael Brodkorb
Michael Cummins
Michael Gerson
Michael Kubesh
Michael Mukasey
Michele Bachmann
Mike Benson
Mike O'Rielly
Mike Osskopp
Mike Parry
Mike Pompeo
Mike Sommers
Minimum Wage
Minnesota Budget
Minnesota Conservatives
Minnesota Legislature
Minnesota Republican Party
Minnesota Tea Party Alliance
Mitch Berg
Mitch McConnell
Mitch Pangerl
Mitt Romney
MNGOP
Modern States Education Alliance
MOOCs
Morrie Lanning
Nancy Pelosi
NARAL
National Security
Neal Peterson
Net Neutrality
New York Times
Newsbusters
Newt Gingrich
NFL
Norm Coleman
Norm Ornstein
NSA
ObamaCare
OccupyDC
Office of Fossil Energy
OPM
Orrin Hatch
Ottawa
Pat Anderson
Pat Buchanan
Pat Garofalo
Pat Shortridge
Paul Demko
Paul Gosar
Paul Koering
Paul Krugman
Paul Teller
Pete Hegseth
Pete Nelson
Pete Sessions
Peter King
Phil Krinkie
Pine City
Pine County
Pine County Republicans
Politics in Minnesota
President 2012
Privacy
Q&A
Racino
Rand Paul
Raul Labrador
Ravi Zacharias
Reason Magazine
Redistricting
Reince Priebus
Religious Freedom Restoration Act
Renee Ellmers
Republican Liberty Caucus
Republican National Convention
Republican Party of Minnesota
Republican Study Committee
Rich Murray
Rick Nolan
Rick Perry
Rick Santorum
Rick Weible
Right to Work
RNC
Rod Hamilton
Rodney Davis
Roger Crawford
Ron Carey
Ron DeSantis
Ron Erhardt
Ron Latz
Ron Paul
Ron Wyden
Rory Koch
RSC
Rudy in the Media
Ryan Winkler
Ryan-Murray
Scott Dibble
Scott Honour
Sean Duffy
SEIU
Sharon Angle
Simply Right
Simpson-Bowles
Socialists
Solar Power
Solyndra
Stadium
Star Tribune
State of the GOP
Steny Hoyer
Steve Gottwalt
Steve Hensley
Steve Jobs
Steve Largent
Steve Perkins
Steve Scalise
Steve Smith
Steven Chu
Stingrays
Sue Jeffers
Syria
Tad Jude
TARP
Tarryl Clark
Tax Foundation
Taxes
Taxpayers' League of Minnesota
Tea Party
Ted Cruz
Ted Lieu
Ted Lovdahl
Terry McCall
Thad Cochran
Thomas Mann
Thomas Massie
Thomas Miller
Thomas Sowell
Tim Cook
Tim Faust
Tim Griffin
Tim Huelskamp
Tim Kelly
Tim Pawlenty
Tim Scott
Title II
Tobacco Taxes
Todd McIntyre
Tom Clougherty
Tom Coburn
Tom Cotton
Tom DeLay
Tom Emmer
Tom Graves
Tom Harkin
Tom McClintock
Tony Sutton
Trans-Alaskan Pipeline
Twila Brase
Unemployment
Unions
Vin Weber
Virginia Foxx
Walter Mondale
Warren Buffett
Wilfare
Will Hurd
William McBridge
Xi Jinping
Yvonne Prettner Solon
Zygi Wilf
powered by

Rudy Takala's Columns

A Reminder that Character Matters

 
When Minnesota’s Republican Senate Caucus hired Michael Brodkorb as their communications director, they may not have expected it would end with
a lawsuit and multiple retirements. Yet while those specific results may have been unpredictable, a person of reasonable judgment could have figured that it would not end well.
 
Even so, it is fortunate that then-Majority Leader Amy Koch was not exercising reasonable judgment when Brodkorb was hired. The incident has been good for the GOP and for democracy.
 
When I first encountered Michael Brodkorb in 2009, he was running against incumbent Dorothy Fleming to become the deputy chairman of the Minnesota Republican Party. He had no substantial contact with the activist wing of the party prior to that from what I had observed. Sure, Democratic blogs probably liked to say that he regularly consorted with Republicans, and Brodkorb might have even sold himself that way. For me, though, the only Republicans I saw Brodkorb associating with were big names that had no relevance to any activism as I knew it.
 
Former Republican National Committeewoman Evie Axdahl might have been a co-chair on his campaign, but I hadn’t heard of her attending any local meetings since the mid-1990s. Present-day State Representative Kurt Daudt might have exclaimed (via written endorsement) that he was “very excited” about Brodkorb’s candidacy, but Daudt never dirtied his hands helping out the activists that much either. The grassroots credentials of Brodkorb’s campaign may have been advertised, but they weren’t really evident.
 
Yet in retrospect, it seems clear that there were warning signs. One endorsement that seems ironic now came from Rory Koch, formerly a Republican chairman of the 4th congressional district and a legislative assistant briefly assigned by House Republicans to answer phone calls for Rep. Tom Emmer’s office. (No, he isn’t related to Sen. Amy Koch. Yes, though, this is the Koch who was discovered to be in possession of child pornography when police raided his home earlier this month.)
 
“Our party is very lucky to have such an excellent candidate for Deputy Chair in Michael Brodkorb,” read the endorsement from Koch. In bold-faced font, the endorsement promised Brodkorb would have “a strong commitment to reform and build our party.”
 
That endorsement came through in an e-mail distributed on April 30, 2009 by Brodkorb’s campaign. The second-to-next endorsement in the e-mail came from Washington County Commissioner Bill Pulkrabek. His endorsement promised, “Michael… is clearly the best equipped candidate for Deputy Chair,” and if he was elected, Republicans would “win back the suburbs.”
 
A present-day Google Search for “Bill Pulkrabek Estee Lauder” will display the issues that particular endorser has sincehad to work out over allegations of domestic assault arising from a disagreement with his girlfriend (no, his wife wasn’t involved) over skin-care lotion. Allegedly, he dragged her down the stairs.
 
Did some good people endorse Michael Brodkorb as well? Sure. Yet did anyone with significant legal problems endorse his opponent for deputy chair? I couldn’t find any. I doubt anyone else could, either.
 
The people most active in politics can generally be described through a dichotomy. They either make a decision to be basically good and have integrity, or they make a decision that character isn’t really as important as it might otherwise be when it comes to winning whatever it is they want to win. These attitudes both stem from and ultimately influence the other regions of life. The two groups recognize each other in the political realm, and they usually will not cross over to support a candidate who is not a member of their group.
 
Brodkorb had his own share of problems, before, during, and after his time in the limelight of the Minnesota Republican Party. From getting into a conflict with Wally “the Beer Man” McNeil in 2007  to his wife calling 911 over an altercation at their home in 2011, it was an open secret in the Republican Party that Brodkorb’s coterie was a pretty foul group of people.
 
For Sen. Koch, of course, that wouldn’t have mattered anyway. The situation was pretty shameful all around.
 
In addition to the loss of Michael Brodkorb, Republicans’ decisionto accept his overall lack of integrity has resulted in the resignation of a state GOP chair, the Senate majority leader, the deputy majority leader, and ongoing ethics hearings, all of which will be defined by the legacy of Michael Brodkorb.
 
So has it been worth it? Well, if it gets some bad people out of government and reminds voters of why they shouldn’t be there in the first place, that’s going to be a good thing for everyone.

0 Comments to A Reminder that Character Matters:

Comments RSS

Add a Comment

Your Name:
Email Address: (Required)
Website:
Comment:
Make your text bigger, bold, italic and more with HTML tags. We'll show you how.
Post Comment
Website Builder provided by  Vistaprint