The Grand Junction Sentinel’s Charles Ashby reported today that not only is the NAACP calling for the resignation of Delta County Republican Chair Linda Sorenson but also Republican leaders themselves.
Delta Republican Matt Soper told Ashby that multiple GOP leades have called for Sorenson to resign 1) for sharing a Facebook meme comparing Obama to a Chimpanzee, as well as 2) for apparently endorsing U.S. Senate candidate Darryl Glenn.
State and county rules forbid party office holders, like Sorenson, from endorsing a candidate in a primary election.
Ashby reports that GOP Chair Steve House does “not believe [Sorenson] should have had that stuff on her Facebook page,” and House will be meeting with Sorenson and other Delta Country GOP officials on Monday to talk about it.
House said the party is not a racist group, but added that there is a difference between racism and racial insensitivity.
“The Republican Party itself, we’re anti-racism every day of the week,” House said. “But if there are racial insensitivities out there, we need to bring them up, we need to talk about them, we need to make sure everyone is educated about it, and then we need to go forward. Burying our heads in the sand or not talking about it is not going to help anybody. There’s no room for racism in our party.”
The location of the meeting, or whether it is public, was not disclosed.
Still unknown is why Sorenson told me she posted the Chimp meme, but then Delta County vice chairman Vic Ullrey told the Sentinel that the meme was the work of a hacker. It appears Ullrey has not been asked directly about the contradiction.
In addition to the Chimp meme, Sorenson shared or liked a handful of posts in the same vein last year. See them here.
Multiple GOP sources have told me that Sorenson has also angered Republicans by her handling of the Congressional District 3 convention, allegedly bungling the vote counting and triggering complaints about the process, finances, and involvement of elected Republicans.
The Sentinel did not report which Republican party leaders Soper claims have called on Sorenson to resign.
Rep. Scott Tipton has not been quoted in media reports on the racist incident, which occurred in his district, nor has Sen. Cory Gardner, but Republican U.S. Senate candidate Jack Graham denounced the meme.
In the article, Soper indicates that he personally saw Sorenson’s Facebook endorsement of Glenn.
I don’t know of a case where a Republican or Democratic state official has resigned for endorsing a primary candidate, and some Republicans believe House himself signaled oppostion to Trump in speech to a GOP group last year. House denied that he supported the mogul over other candidates.
Then Pueblo County GOP Chair Becky Mizel was apparently not asked to resign after essentially endorsing gubernatorial candidate Tom Tancredo in 2013. Back in 2011, in a similar action over party rules, then State GOP Chair Ryan Call suggested that then El Paso GOP Secretary Sarah Arnold should “strongly consider” resigning for criticizing elected Reublicans, in violation of party rules.