Several Geist area property owners appeared yesterday at the Bella Vita Ristorante, where the Republican Party was holding a fundraiser. They held 'No Annexation' signs with the idea being to get the Party's attention, that there is a connection between financial support for statewide Republicans and the actions of local Republicans.
Indy Star coverage link. WISH-TV coverage link. Fishers Blog coverage link. All have excellent photos, but the Fishers Blog has some nice comments about the Libertarians and the Kole Campaign, which is greatly appreciated!
The Fishers Town Council is an all-Republican body. Charlie White is a member of the Council, and the GOP County Chair. He managed Mitch Daniels' election efforts in Hamilton County. The Party gets the connection on the receiving end of fundraising, that's for sure, so Daniels was the main attraction in this $400/plate event.
So it was fascinating to read a quote in this morning's Indy Star, by the county GOP's fundraising chief:
Participants at the Hamilton County GOP fundraiser paid $400 each to be there, said Peter Emigh, county party finance chairman.
He wasn't upset about the protest.
"I think these people are nice people, good people," he said. "At the same time, this has nothing to do with the Fishers Town Council."
Obtuse? Or, genuine disconnect from reality? Nothing to do with the Council? Does Mr. Emigh think the Council is comprised of Democrats? He could be forgiven, as the Council certainly looks as though it is.
But, to quote a famous Democrat, "All politics is local". Indeed, politics never gets closer to home than the home itself. This seems utterly lost on local Republicans.
Actually, there is an enormous disconnect within the Republican Party. Mainly, it doesn't stand for much of anything. That which it claims to stand for, it fails to deliver on.
When campaigning, Republicans say they are for lower taxes. This forced annexation attempt by the Republican government certainly doesn't reflect that belief, as the property taxes of the Geist residents would soar immediately upon the completion of the annexation.
When campaigning, Republicans say they are for smaller government. The forced annexation literally expands the area to be governed. It appears that the only thing Republicans are consistent on is bringing in money to spend. They are constantly fundraising as an organization, and constantly taxing as government officials.
This is typical throughout Hamilton County. The governing bodies, whether at the municipal or county levels, are endlessly scheming for ways to bring in more tax revenues, and they are all Republican.
In the last calendar year, we have seen an increase in food & beverage taxes by the County Council, and by Carmel, Noblesville, and Westfield. A wheel tax was considered by the County. Carmel has floated an enormous amount in bonds. The County is backing a billion-dollar light rail boondoggle, and is studying a bus system like IndyGo. A forced annexations were completed near Home Place, another was defeated in Home Place, and others in Southwest Clay and in Geist are still on the table. Tax, tax, tax.
Charlie White is the County Chair/Town Councilor. County Chairs that have any effectiveness drive political policy. So, either White is a tax-and-spend liberal Republican, or he is ineffective at directing his Party. White hasn't been seen pulling back the annexation attempt, that's for sure. Here's White's statement, from the main page of the Hamilton County GOP website:
The Hamilton County Republican Party does not take a position for or against the proposed annexation of the unincorporated residents of the Geist area. One can be a good and active Republican and be on either side of this very important topic. Although Republicans may differ on the annexation issue, we all continue to support our national and statewide Republican leaders. Friends, neighbors and relatives may not always agree, but in the end we are Republicans, Hoosiers and Americans. Residents of this county, whether they are for or against this issue, are always welcome in the Republican Party.
The Republican Party doesn't take a position! Like I said, the Republican Party doesn't stand for anything.
Libertarians are plain on this issue: Forced annexation is always wrong, period.
For Geist residents, Here is the next opportunity to try to make your point:
Support my campaign for Secretary of State. The Libertarian Party is the only Party that consistently backs the rights of property owners. The Secretary of State's race determines which political parties get automatic ballot access in Indiana. If we fail to get our numbers, Indiana loses its only defender of property rights, and the only political opponent to forced annexation.
The Kole Campaign will host an organizational meeting on Saturday, February 11. Details on time and location will be forthcoming, so keep an eye on this blog, and on the campaign website: www.mikekole.com
The Republican Party won't listen to reason, and made like your protest was not a big deal. They may understand losing dollars and votes. In the end, though, you shouldn't have to beg. Libertarians support the Geist property owners without reservation.
To that end, here is a quote from the Fishers Blog:
We originally found about the Geist protest from the website of Libertarian candidate for Indiana Secretary of State, Mike Kole. Mike has a blog feature on his website which he updates frequently. The Libertarian Party of Indiana has jumped aboard the Fishers / Geist Annexation issue without a second thought. It is an appropriate issue for them to support as it relates to their core principles of individual freedom and small government. The Libertarian Party just may reap some benefits next election from Geist residents who are upset with Fishers Town Council Republicans trying to annex their neighborhoods.