What Schroder Can Do That Other PA6 Candidates Can’t

The Schroder campaign has its official kick-off event last night at the Ludwig’s Corner firehouse. By all estimates it was a great success.

There were, easily, two hundred people there. Perhaps even more. I would wager virtually all of them were actual voters in the sixth congressional district. This certainly appeared to exceed expectations. They had to roll out about three times the initial number of tables, and the hall was still standing room only.

Introducing Curt were a number of area luminaries. Not exactly household names– except perhaps for former Congressman Bob Walker– but people very well known to those who vote in GOP primaries: Berks Commissioner Christain Leinbach, former Chesco Commissioner Colin Hanna, former State Rep. Carol Rubley, and others.

And this is what indicates what the Schroder campaign can do that no other candidate for this office can pull off. Heck, you could probably count on one hand the number of politicians NATIONALLY that can pull this off:

For this office he has already lined up a range of endorsements that no other candidate can even come within the same universe of matching. At the same time, Schroder offers a message as a legitimate Republican outsider. Congressman Walker, while introducing him, lambasted current national GOP leadership And last night Rep. Schroder talked about introducing legislative reforms opposed by leaders in both parties, standing against recently indicted former GOP speaker Perzel, auditing the Fed, taking on the trial lawyer lobby, and supporting the rights of property-owners against gas line companies.

So Schroder has a very solid record as a man willing to make tough votes against his own party. This is why folks in both the Tea Party movement and those coming from the Ron Paul end of the party tend to support him. And yet, at the same time, he actually has a mainstream conservative legislative track record and is supported by office-holders all over the Republican party, if not, perhaps, by those leading the GOP committee.

The size and enthusiasm of the crowd last night confirmed that Schroder is able to thread this needle. Anyone who thinks the size of someone else’s wallet makes that person a front-runner simply isn’t paying attention to actual voters.

Oh, and for the record: He didn’t once mention primary opponent Steve Welch’s address, or the fact he was a registered Democrat last year. So our friend at may want to revise and extend his remarks that he expected Rep. Schroder to “make an issue” of these things.

Frankly, though, this is a GOP primary. Is the Schroder campaign supposed to pretend they aren’t running against a former Democrat?

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December 15, 2009 at 12:36 pm Comments (0)

Welch a Dem as recently as May? (#PA6)

(This post has been edited – JC)

RedState has taken issue with Steve Welch.  Most of it we’ve heard before, with the donation to Sestak, and the district-hopping, etc.

But I didn’t realize he had voted as a Democrat through the 2008 election cycle, having voted as a Democrat since 2006.  (And only having previously voted as a Republican in 2004).  He did not see fit to vote in 2005, the 2006 primary, or in 2007.  He voted as a Republican in the May election, but when exactly did he change his registration?

Look, I welcome anybody who wants to (re-)register as Republican, but I seriously question the judgment of anybody who was registered Dem for the 2008 cycle.  (That is, unless they had switched just for the primary/”operation Chaos”, which is clearly not the case here.)  It was painfully obvious from the primary debates the direction both Clinton and Obama wanted to take the country.  I find it hard to see how such a person can credibly run for federal office as a Republican in the 2010 cycle.

I wonder how he voted for President…

(h/t to Panzramic, and Tania and Karl’s Facebook pages)

(Also, I hope that first link works.  RedState is having a technical issue of some sort.)

December 2, 2009 at 8:49 pm Comments (0)

Steve Welch: “How many supporters do I have? Hey! Look over there!”

According to this link at the Delco Times, Steve Welch has been claiming he raised $250k since early July for his Congressional runs. First, the one for the seventh district. And now the race in the sixth district, to replace Jim Gerlach. Or maybe he was just talking about the seventh back then. It’s hard to keep straight.

Along with that $250k, he says he matched that amount with his own money.

The problem is, this appears not to be true at all. At least to me. Perhaps I’m missing something.

According to recently released campaign finance records, Steve Welch raised $18,450 during the period covered by that article…from people not named “Steven Welch”. This is a far cry from $250k. Heck, it’s more than a decimal point off! And he did not return a single donation he received while running for the seventh district.

In total he has raised $46,150 from forty reported contributors. Interestingly, almost half of this money is from outside of Pennsylvania. Only seven of those forty contributors, in fact, even reside in the district he aspires to represent.

He also claims to have hundreds of other contributors who have contributed less than $200. This means those “hundreds” have contributed $7,080. I suppose its possible he found three hundred people who gave him small amounts of money falling under the limit invoking identity disclosure. That model certainly worked for Obama and Ron Paul. But seeing how we haven’t even finished the 2009 cycle yet, he has virtually no name recognition, and he’s only been running in the sixth for a few weeks, it seems unusual.

The important contrast here is with Curt Schroder. He raised almost $110k in just the last thirty days from over 140 reported individuals.

This is a blow to the Welch campaign, and they are apparently trying to put lipstick on a pig when they talk about fundraising. There aren’t that many ways to say “I gave myself a LOT of money!” Welch’s narrative is supposed to be about the political outsider with a groundswell of support from within the district. He is also fighting off accusations that he doesn’t live in the district, and is hence less in tune with the voters there.

But Schroder was able to raise twice what Welch did from over 140 reported individuals, and well north of 300 people total. Welch’s war chest, on the other hand, is comprised of about 92% of his own money, and over half of what remains is from out of state.

In other words, 96% of his support, as represented by his allegedly positive fundraising numbers, comes from himself and people who don’t even live in Pennsylvania, let alone the district.

That’s an outsider message, I bet, he would rather not emphasize.

(This has also been covered at Midnight Blue, here.)

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October 15, 2009 at 3:28 pm Comments (0)

Steve Welch and Progressive PAC ActBlue

ActBlue is a political action committee that has raised over $100 million to help people who answer the question “Want blue states?” in the affirmative.

In a post here I mentioned Steve Welch, GOP candidate for the Sixth Congressional District, had donated money to this PAC. Not long after posting this, Mr. Welch gave me a call to deny it. Said it wasn’t true. Also indicated he would send me his own resource reference to confirm this before the end of the day, yesterday.

I have records from two well-known campaign finance resources indicating this is so. We’re not talking about a lot. It was $300. Certainly a lot less than the $2500 he recently donated to Bob Asher’s PAC.

Well, I haven’t gotten information yet from Welch’s team, aside from the denial. So I have no reason, for now, to doubt the resources I have in front of me. The donation is from Steven Welch, President of Mitos Technologies. Candidate Welch founded that company in 2001, and sold it in 2007. The donation was in 2006, the same cycle he wrote a similar check to Joe Sestak, which he acknowledges.

But Welch is a busy guy. I’m sure he’ll get around to sending the resource clearing this up. Because unless he has some sort of explanation, it would have been insane for him to call me up and categorically deny it. But I do want to people to know I’m not making this stuff up. If Welch is correct, at least two sites have it wrong, for some reason.

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October 7, 2009 at 9:28 am Comments (0)

re: re: Clearing a Path for Meehan

Thanks for the concurrance, Joe.

But here’s a poll for anyone who’s paying attention. This blog has over a dozen contributors from different parts of the state with different ideological tendencies. What do we have in common, though? We don’t run the Pennsylvania Republican party. Yet.

Is there a single one of us who thinks Welch moving to the sixth district is a good idea? There must be at least one! Bueller…Bueller…

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September 11, 2009 at 2:15 pm Comment (1)

Should Regular Voters Be Happy With Welch Clearing a Path for Meehan?

[cross-posted at]

At this point everyone has noticed Steve Welch’s site no longer says which congressional seat he seeks. As has been discussed, Mr. Welch was seeking to represent the seventh congressional district, the one recently vacated by Joe Sestak. For a number of reasons, though, he is now considering seeking the sixth congressional seat, the one vacated by Jim Gerlach. State Representative Curt Schroder has already announced for the sixth, and he is the candidate I support.

But the Delaware County Republican leadership is eager to clear the way for Pat Meehan, who mortally mismanaged his run for Governor. Meehan, we know, plans on announcing on Monday he is seeking the congressional seat in the seventh. I bear no ill-will for Meehan, but he does not have nearly the potential as a representative that both Welch and Schroder do.

Schroder is a nationally recognized state legislator with a track record of attracting bipartisan support for mainstream conservative reform. Nevertheless, he remains obviously conservative. Imagine that! A clear conservative with a handle on policy who enjoys broad bipartisan support! Importantly, his political career is such that while he enjoys a good working relationship with the Republican party, he does not owe his position to them. His circle is not overrun with rent-seekers and logrollers. He has, in fact, had confrontations with those people.

Steve Welch is a complete political outsider with a commanding personal biography, lots of money, excellent ideas on fiscal reform, and manifest charm. And, did I mention, lots of money? He, also, would not owe his success to anybody.

Meehan is a longtime prosecutor with no legislative experience. Also, importantly, the most pressing issues of our day surround financial matters and the promotion of regional economic growth, followed by healthcare. Rep. Schroder has a handle on these issues, and is the author of important legislation regarding them. Welch is a successful entrepreneur with an impressive track record of knowledge on these issues. Nobody would say these issues are in Pat Meehan’s wheelhouse. In fact, my conversations with Mr. Welch confirm he largely agrees on this analysis.

In my conversations with Mr. Welch, it is clear to me the two reasons he has for considering a run in the sixth rather than the seventh are A) He is terrified of the far-left carpetbagging sack of money named Pike who is, for now, the presumptive Democrat candidate in the sixth, and B) He needs to be convinced Schroder would be a better actual congresscritter than Meehan.

We have already made the case for B. But what about A?

I have heard the Republican party leadership in Pennsylvania and the House Republican Campaign Committee fear Schroder is too conservative to win in the sixth district, so they want Welch and his money– did I mention he has a lot of money?– to run there instead.

Over the last few days, Steve Welch will have gotten notices from real voters in the sixth concerning, in part, Schroder’s electability. Mr. Welch has heard from management consultants, and admittedly left-wing organic community gardeners. He has heard from leaders of the Republican Jewish Coaltition, and a hippie head of a majority Democrat borough’s Community Development Corporation. In short, he is hearing from a wide range of voters in the sixth district about how Curt Schroder can indeed win the seat.

Chester County represents the largest population within the sixth district, and Rep. Schroder has been winning elections in Chester County for years. Also, he not only lives in the district, but is a lifetime resident of it. This will be an important weapon against Pike, who will be seen as an outsider looking to buy a seat. Mr. Welch, while he does live really close to the district, doesn’t actually live in it. This will blunt this line of attack, which any voter can understand. In a battle between two rich outsiders, getting out the base becomes an important challenge for both. In that battle, Pike has the edge. The Democrat apparatus would be more squarely behind him, and the Dems have a slim registration advantage in the district. In the seventh, though, Welch lives in the district.

If Mr. Welch is wondering about electability, finally, I wonder how many regular voters in the seventh are begging him to run in the sixth because Meehan is so great? Not too many that aren’t part of the GOP apparatus, I bet. I’m sure he’s hearing from GOP Chairman Judge. Perhaps a bunch of comitteeman taking marching orders. And he might even be hearing from national figures that love the prospect of not having to raise money. But how have those seers been doing in general elections, lately? Not so well, in case you haven’t noticed. And what polling evidence do they have that Schroder is too conservative to win the sixth? Probably not much, since people don’t know who the heck Doug Pike is.

Working together, Mr. Welch and Rep. Schroder could make a commanding team. In different ways, they are outsiders. In different ways, they are highly competent. Working together, they can absolutely both win. Running against each other, though, is suicide for people who have as their primary interest the best possible mainstream conservative representation for an area that has been sorely lacking it for a while.

If you concur with this analysis, and want to encourage Mr. Welch to finish the job he started in the seventh, tell him yourself.



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September 11, 2009 at 12:42 pm Comment (1)

Welch and Schroder Would Make Great Team for Southeastern PA. Let’s Make it Happen.

Anyone interested in securing the best possible representation for Southeastern Pennsylvania in Congress can help with just a few seconds of their time.

Curt Schroder is running to represent the 6th Congressional district, Jim Gerlach’s seat. He is a well-known conservative with nationally recognized state legislation to his credit. He also is an independent thinker with bipartisan appeal who does not owe his position to a cadre of big donors and rent-seekers.

Steven Welch is an entrepreneur with extensive business experience who comes from completely outside the sometimes nepotistic and self-defeating political system. From a middle-class background, he has earned a fair degree of wealth, and will be at least partly self-financed. Therefore he can be an independent conservative with bipartisan appeal as well.

Mr. Welch was running for the seventh congressional seat, currently held by Joe Sestak. Together, Welch and Schroder would make a great team.

Pat Meehan, though, has decided he can’t win a Governor’s race. So he wants to run for Sestak’s seat. Therefore some have decided it would be best for Welch to run for the sixth congressional seat, and hence against Curt Schroder in a primary.

This would be a bad idea for the people of Pennsylvania. We have two candidates that represent a great mainstream conservative change in our congressional delegation. Two faces that are largely new to the average voter, who the PA GOP can run in a 2010, a cycle likely to be dominated by anti-incumbent sentiment.

Mr. Welch implied to me that it would be about a week before he made up his mind. He also implied that if he were to be convinced that A) Curt Schroder would be a better congressman than Pat Meehan, and B) Rep. Schroder could win a general election race against a far left-wing, carpetbagging sack of inherited money named Pike, then Mr. Welch may decide to stick with running for the seventh congressional seat.

If you, like me, are merely interested in securing the best possible congressional representation for the people of Pennsylvania, tell Mr. Welch what you think. Point out he and Schroder would make a great team. Tell him all voters, Republicans, Democrats, and independents, want real reform in government, and that he and Rep. Schroder have the potential to lead us down that road.

Steven Welch has a Facebook page which currently appears less than hospitable to wall-posts. Give it a go, though:

His e-mail is

If you can play nice and reasonable, I would be happy to share his phone number as well. Contact me if you want to go that route, but remember: The goal is not to annoy, but to persuade.

Have at it, folks. In the early stages of an election regular voters can have a real impact. If you concur with my analysis, have at it. We have a few days to make our voices heard.

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September 7, 2009 at 12:28 pm Comments (3)