RALEIGH, (SGRToday. com) - One term is enough for North Carolina Republican Party Chairman Claude Pope, who announced this week he will not seek a second term as leader of the state party. In a statement posted to the party's website, Pope said he's proud of "progress over these past two years" and looked forward to going back to his family and business on the coast.
The text of the letter is below.
Dear Fellow Republicans,
In 2013, I ran for the office of Chairman of the North Carolina Republican Party on a four-point platform: Talent, Training, Tactics, and Treasure. I’m happy to report that we’ve made outstanding progress over these past two years.
We recruited a staff of phenomenal talent at State Party Headquarters, lead by our Executive Director – Todd Poole. We’ve worked hard to train, mentor, and inspire our County leadership, and we fielded the strongest group of talented candidates up and down our ballots. With the incredible support of the RNC, our tactical ground game overwhelmed our democratic opponents, winning our US Senate race, adding a seat to our US Congressional delegation (now standing at 10 Republicans out of 13 total), while maintaining super-majorities in our NC House and NC Senate. We also elected a record number of Republican County Commissioners and Republican Sheriffs – and now control over 50 counties respectively. And – we maintained our majority on the NC Supreme Court and picked up the majority on the NC Court of Appeals. Lastly, we survived the de-funding of our taxpayer-subsided State Party organization (taxpayer check-off funds went away) by aggressively fund-raising through events, direct mail, telemarketing, and direct one-on-one solicitation of major donors, and our financial house is in good order.
After 140 years of wondering the wilderness as a minority Party, our Party now presides over a strong political majority in North Carolina, and with that comes its own challenges. Success is a “journey,” and not a “destination,” so we really need a 30-year majority to affect lasting positive changes. We’re always striving to improve. We must continue to learn how to “be a majority” – how to govern, how to better lead, and how to better organize, and how to live up to our promises, our platform, and our potential.
The election cycle of 2016 is a critical point in our evolution as a majority party in North Carolina. We have the opportunity of re-electing our great Governor Pat McCrory, our Lt. Governor Dan Forest, Senator Burr, and picking up additional offices at the Council of State. We must also re-elect Justice Edmonds to the NC Supreme Court and maintain our majorities in the NC House and the NC Senate. Equally important, we must carry the state for our eventual presidential nominee, and to that end, the State Chairman will be leading the largest delegation in history of Republicans from North Carolina to our national convention.
It has been a solemn honor and privilege to serve as your Chairman, and I’m very proud of our team, and our accomplishments. I have made thousands of new friends, and driven thousands of miles all over our state. Many of you have encouraged me to run again as your state chairman, and I’m overwhelmed by your support. It is with mixed emotions therefore that I’ve decided to forgo seeking another term as your chairman.
I will continue to faithfully serve the remaining months of my term – raising money, recruiting talent, and providing mentoring and leadership to the many up and coming leaders around the state. I will advise and share my knowledge and experience with select candidates who announce their intentions to seek the Chairman’s office, and I will assist the new Chairman in their transition into the office upon their election at the NCGOP State Convention in Raleigh this coming June. I also plan to remain active as a Past Chairman – first, as a voting member of the Central Committee, but also as a fundraiser, a donor, and advisor to others who may seek or become elected to public offices around the state.
I’m looking forward to re-engaging with my business interests, and becoming reacquainted with my family! I’m also looking forward to playing more golf, catching (and eating) more fish, finishing my novel, and conspiring with our friends. Mostly, I’m looking forward to being home every evening with Melissa – my lovely bride of 33 years. Lastly, I invite you all to come and experience Bald Head Island – our little island paradise – and drop by the Maritime Market and say hi when you come down. I will cherish those encounters, and we’ll reminisce about our hard fought battles and our many victories together.
God Bless you for all of your hard work. I pray that God will continue to Bless our great State, and our great nation!