Last week the Utah Republican Party filed a lawsuit against SB 54, the compromise between lawmakers and organizers of the "Count My Vote" initiative, seeking to undo the legislation.
Our "Political Insiders" and readers disagree with the lawsuit, and all three groups think the suit will ultimately lose in court.
Selected anonymous comments:
"Once again, it shows that my party leadership is more concerned with holding onto power than doing what is right."
"A bill brought forth by Republicans, passed by Republicans, and signed by a Republican Governor. Sounds like bait and switch to me."
"If people really wanted to get involved in the political process, then all they have to do is go to their Caucus Meeting! I have been doing this ever since I found out about it and have been a County or State Delegate for many years. Direct primaries result in only the rich and famous being able to run for office. "
"Count my vote is terrible on all levels. Let the parties decide how they are going to be run. Do not fool yourself for moment and think this is anything other than anger at the grassroots and wholesale destruction of the system to ensure the candidate with the most money will win.
"I'm a Republican. I will not donate again to the Republican Party. Nor will I donate to candidates or office holders who have donated to this cause. They are dead wrong on this."
"This is as stupid a move politically as I have seen in the state. A state party suing their own Governor and Lt. Governor? A state party saying that what a vast majority of legislature which is made up by a vast majority of their own party members passed an unconstitutional law? If, God forbid, the Utah GOP wins the case they will be telling a vast majority of Utah voters they shouldn't have a say in who the candidates for office are?"
"I'm a Utah County county delegate who was uncomfortable with the exclusive direct primary of the Count My Vote initiative, but who also thinks the caucus and convention are not the miracle of dedicated scrutiny some claim."
"As a long-time moderate Republican, I am extremely upset with this suit. Maybe it is time for a third party in Utah that includes the moderates of the Republicans and Democrats. The Tea Party people and the extreme left-wing can have their own parties."
"This is a sleazy & despicable follow-up to the disingenuous compromise they foisted up to stop the Count My Vote effort. Hypocritical, devious & discouraging but not unexpected from a party that believes it's untouchable, that it can do any self-serving thing it wants to without any fear of proper consequences."
"Why did all those legislators vote for a law they thought was unconstitutional?"
"As a Republican, I am very offended that some party leaders would oppose the overall will of the general rank and file members and spend party money, as well as taxpayer money (to defend the case) to file this suit."
"As a Republican state delegate, I want to express my extreme displeasure with the current party leadership for their parochial views and actions that are going to limit the size of the Republican tent. CMV was put together by some of the strongest (though not the most extreme) members of the party. They should drop this ill-conceived idea immediately. That won't happen because, unfortunately, the Republican party has the same problem that society at large has — it is dominated and controlled by its fringe elements. This is because the more reasonable parts are unwilling to take the time to be actively involved."
"If SB54 violates the Constitution, it should be invalidated."
"How is the government right in telling a private organization how they will run their offices and who they will choose?"
"Utah GOP's new motto: down with people, down with the promises, down with progress. Power to the petty."
"The GOP suing the GOP because of what the GOP did to the GOP? What did people think was going to happen with a super majority this big? When you try to curb lowest common denominator politicians, you have no option left but to sue yourself."
"It's bizarre to see legislators who voted for the bill now supporting the lawsuit. To me, this is nothing more than legislators who got grief from their delegates, and are now trying to appease them with their about-face."
"The GOP says they are for more inclusion and more participation. They should show it. The only ones who support the waste-of-time lawsuit are those who could not win in a primary because of their extreme views. Sad."
"Republicans are determined to push away their moderate members."
"Clearly the Republican Party has no intention of honoring its agreement with Count My Vote. This is a blatant demonstration to the public that they cannot be trusted to keep their word. If they succeed in breaking this agreement, the next Count My Vote effort will be uncompromising in working with Utah's voters to take back control of their state."
"In the eloquent words of LaVarr Webb: 'SB54 was passed overwhelmingly by a Republican House, a Republican Senate, and signed by a Republican governor. Count My Vote and SB54 are also supported by former Republican governors, former Republican members of Congress, and former Republican state legislators. Why, then, would their own party attack it?'"
"The Party doesn't know when to declare victory. They were thrown a lifeline for their outdated caucus system. Even if successful, the petition effort will be back to finish what they started but with no mercy this time. All efforts should be made to make participation in the process easier not more difficult."
"I think it's amazing the Republican Party has the right to bring a deliberate end to competitive elections in Utah be we don't have the right to enact minor election reforms. What a scam."