Response to an article in the Seattle times written by Jim Bruner on August 18 2022 where JT Wilcox was interviewed regarding HROC picks around the state all finishing below 50 percent in this primary.

In this interview it was stated that the 47th district shot itself in the foot by diluting its votes with 3 republicans. Wilcox is quoted as saying it was “silly” and the district showed “lack of control” of its party and that two additional candidates ran who had lost in the past. “This is the sign of an unserious party, selfish candidates and can have dire consequences for us all,” Wilcox wrote.

This is a one-sided opinion of what happened. I am writing to tell you the more popular and less written about opinion.

This is a story of the republican electorate tail wagging the dog here in the 47th District. Every now and then when people in power get a bit full of themselves it is important for the electorate to correct them, and it was a shame to have this happen right now when we had a very good chance to have a conservative in this seat.

“Power tends to corrupt; absolute power corrupts absolutely”. (Lord Acton)

This is the case when it comes to the House Republican Organizational Committee (HROC). They have taken it upon themselves to decide who should run and who should not in their own back rooms with no consultation or coordination with the District Chairperson. This is dangerous on many levels. Obviously, they are not choosing candidates that are run of the mill conservatives the electorate would normally support. This is evident in the fact that not one of the HROC candidates could get over the 50% vote barrier in the primary in 2022 and further evident by HROC performance history of candidates they have supported.

Let’s look at HROC lead by JT Wilcox supported candidates in the 47th District since 2010 as evidence of what I am saying.

21010 Primary HROC lead by JT WILCOX supported Nancy Wyatt. Nancy garnished only 5418 votes in the primary. The District and PCOs supported Mark Hargrove who earned 9,908 votes

2018 Primary HROC lead by JT Wilcox supported Lindsey Shumway who got 5,245 votes and the district voted Ted Cook with 7,230 votes.

2020 Primary HROC lead by JT Wilcox supported Joe Cimaomo who received a measly 4,154 votes when Ted Cooke received 12,817 votes.

2022 Primary HROC lead by JT Wilcox supported Carmen Goers who was knocked out easily with only 4,272 votes while both the other conservatives harvested 9,776 votes.

HROC lead by JT Wilcox is a complete failure and a waste of the Republican Party’s precious resources and yet he is constantly congratulated and admired for his role in the Party. 

HROC supported 14 candidates in the 2022 primary and couldn’t get one of them over the finish line of 50 percent votes. Why is that? If this were an NFL season the GM would be fired for sure. HROC has a history of supporting underperforming centrists’ that the districts do not approve of. They funnel precious resources to its “picks” that do not win. Why are they choosing such moderates? Are they working with the District Chairperson to select these candidates? How are they selecting these candidates and did the PCOs in that district have any input? After all it’s the PCOs that must support the candidates at the end of the day.

The answer to all these questions is no. HROC never consults with the 47th District Chairman about candidates. When I was District Chair HROC never consulted with me about anything. As a district, we find out about HROC choosing a candidate for us when that candidate shows up at a meeting and gives a commercial about how much money they have raised and that HROC is behind them.

I can only speak of why it failed in the 47th district and it wasn’t because the “districts lack of control” or its “silliness” of additional candidates as stated by Wilcox.

HROC groomed, directed, and assisted in spending over 240,000 dollars to their 47th district pick in a campaign that started early “putting the work in” as Wilcox claimed. This candidate was Carmen Goers.

The two candidates that ran inexpensive campaigns for only 3 months demolished the HROC darling candidate smashing her down to 5th place behind 2 republicans and the 2 democrats in the race as well. It’s clear the conservative electorate in the 47th District did not want Carmen Goers! In fact, they have rejected every HROC pick as far as I can remember. Goers couldn’t even garnish 1/3 of conservative votes. If she was so electable and if she had invested so much time and money towards her campaign, if she was gifted every endorsement possible then how could this possibly happen? If she put in all that work for 12 months, how could she lose so badly?

Its not only HROC fault but also the 47th District Board members and the Chairperson, and equally the County Party Leader by being so mesmerized at an HROC pick for their district that they simply went along with the faulty candidate.

This darling candidate of HROC just walked in a few district meetings over a year ago and announced she wanted to run for State Representative and had HROC support. The district took her in without even the slightest vetting I later found out.

Even an hour of vetting would have shown her history of supporting and working on Democrats campaigns. It is easy to look up someone’s donation history. They didn’t even do that. A simple peek through her personal Facebook photo album contained alarming images that were not favorable to a conservative and she admittedly is a moderate Republican.

A few of us conducted these simple background checks and discovered the candidate was not suitable to attract the everyday conservative. But everyone pressed on, saying a conservative could not win in this district. They felt a woman running would get an extra 3% vote. They didn’t care if she was truly conservative, only if she had the blessings and the money of HROC behind her.

To the regular conservatives when we see HROC supporting a candidate we think it’s a curse to them. Sort of like being endorsed by the Seattle Times.

The “lack of discipline” in the District Wilcox mentioned, was likely because Wilcox felt the District Chair could not tamp down conservatives like myself, and other PCOs to accept their faulty candidate. I was proven right that the candidate was not someone the electorate would support by easily beating her and so did another conservative as well.

Let this be a message from the electorate to the State, County, and District Chair that we will choose our own candidate who is conservative and if you try to force other subpar candidates down our throat with your “discipline” we will always run a true conservative candidate against them.

I believe HROC destroyed this district’s chance to succeed by grooming and funding an inferior candidate (but a liberal candidate they liked) and expected the electorate and district leadership to submit to HROCs will and fully support her. Had HROC stayed out of this race or chosen a candidate the Chairman and PCOs chose and properly vetted it might have been a completely different story here in the 47th.

“This is the sign of an unserious party, selfish candidates and can have dire consequences for us all,”

Wilcox wrote.


“This is a sign that the JT Wilcox and HROC is not in touch with the electorate and is drunk with power expecting District and County Party members to do what HROC says without question and exact discipline to its members. HROC has either lost sight of its purpose or they are not conservative Republicans and needs to find new leadership within itself”

Barry Knowles wrote


That’s the real story of what happened from the point of view of a previous Chairman, PCO and Republican voter here in the 47th District.

We are supposed to live in a system where the electorate tells the legislators what they want and not one where the party dictates over the electorate. As a district we usually do that by putting forth our own candidates chosen and supported by the Precinct Committee Officers in the District and then hope HROC will support our choice.

However, it’s not unusual that people (higher up) come into power and eventually lose sight of the electorate and begin to dictate over the party. This is precisely what has happened with HROC and in the 47th District this year and may continue if the party does not start including the districts in the candidate selection process.

I see a metamorphoses here in Washington State Republican politics over the last few years. Our district leadership has given up on traditional conservative values and is desperate to win a seat in Olympia, regardless wheather it is with a moderate or not. The Chair and its advisory feel we can not win unless we soften and become more moderate. This is new thinking to me. I always say hold the line and when people have had enough, they will eventually switch over and when they are ready to switch you do not need to soften your values, let them come all the way over.

I imagine this is the same metamorphosis that killed the Republican Party in California and other liberal states. That’s the evolution I am speaking of. Not only do I see this district change its thinking I am also seeing the County Chair doing the same and I believe HROC has already been that way for many years. The choice for the next District Chairperson in the 47th will surely decide which way we are going.

God help the United States of America, and the 47th District