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Vance Patrick

It’s been a rough ride for Michigan Republican Party Chairwoman Kristina Karamo, who hails from Oakland County, since taking over in February of this year the top party spot following a drubbing in her 2022 attempt to be elected as the secretary of state. She came from the ultra-conservative fringe of the party, which itself seems divided and destined nowadays to spend most of its energy debating who is more MAGA, rather than addressing the financial collapse and loss of active membership of those who have held the GOP together in past years – and who are now fleeing the circus atmosphere. But the Karamo reign on thin ice could be nearing its end with what appears to be a growing organized effort, with a call for a late December meeting of the party’s state committee where her future will be decided. Insiders say that there may actually be the necessary 75 percent of the state committee willing to vote to end Karamo’s tenure. The anti-Karamo train picked up steam in mid-December when the Republican chairs of two of the largest counties – Oakland and Macomb – publicly called out for Karamo to be removed as state party chair. As for Oakland, GOP chair Vance Patrick issued a letter calling for her removal, blaming her for a state party “left in shambles” as far as its near bankruptcy position. Patrick went a step further and expressed interest in being elected by the state committee as the replacement chair, although one insider said he is “already in over his head. I think he is a non-starter.” Several Vance critics agreed he is not well known and doesn’t have the necessary skills to raise the millions of dollars needed for the party to be a factor in the 2024 elections now that big donors are giving directly to candidate committees or the state House and Senate Republican election committees rather than donate to the clown car of a state party. Patrick is not the only Republican with an eye on the state party chair should Karamo get the hook. Count among them Scott Greenlee from Ingham County and election denier J.D. Glaser, chair of the 5th Congressional District, both of whom ran but failed to get the party chair position earlier this year. Add to the field, former westside congressman and Netherlands ambassador (as well as one of the unlucky Rick Snyder gubernatorial primary challengers years ago) Pete Hoekstra who said he is willing to serve the party as chairperson. Said one observer: the state chair post is “basically Hoekstra’s” if he wants it.

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