Gillette News Record: Local GOP more united than divided | Columns

GILLETTE (March 20) — It’s refreshing to see parity is still valued in Campbell County politics.

The recent leadership change within the Campbell County Republican Party Central Committee shows the local GOP, overall, is more united than divided after a tumultuous couple of years that saw a faction of the local party move so far right as to alienate other Republicans.

At its core, the issue was basically the party’s most conservative members raging about Republicans who weren’t ultra-conservative or wouldn’t follow lock-step every platform of the party. In short, they weren’t Republican enough.

Conversely, those more “moderate” Republicans were increasingly less comfortable with the ultra-right wing of the party. After a general election that saw the state Legislature turn significantly more conservative, Campbell County is sending a message to the rest of the state that being Republican also can mean being open and inclusive within a conservative mission.

Heather Herr, the new chair of the Campbell County Republican Party, calls it a commitment to “diversity of thought.”

She said different ideas and positions within the party can make it stronger, not more divided.

“I feel that if we’re going to grow as a party, we do need diversity of thought,” she’s quoted in today’s cover story. “You can’t grow if you don’t open your ears and hear what everybody has to say. I think we’re a very diverse community, and your party needs to reflect that.”

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