Saul Anuzis Responds to Technology as Self-Promotion Criticism

Posted: Dec 09, 2008 2:20 PM
This morning at the American Spectator Newsmakers Breakfast, I asked RNC Chair candidate Saul Anuzis about an anonymous (ostensibly) pro-Mike Duncan blog which questions whether or not Anuzis' use of technology is purely self-serving.   

The blog asserts that Anuzis personally "owns" the MI GOP Facebook page, that he has more videos on his personal YouTube page than on the MI GOP YouTube page, and that while Saul is very active on Twitter, there is no MI GOP Twitter account.

Over at TechRepublican, David All also discusses this topic (video below).

Anuzis' response to my question was also a good one -- and nearly identical to what he said in the video above.  He correctly noted that -- for online communications to really work -- it has to be personal and real.  And he is wise to realize that usually when a party or  organization has a blog, for example, staffers usually end up doing the posting.  Predictably, these blogs usually become merely a means to spout boring, safe pablum.

(Ironically, the American Spectator -- who hosted the event -- has a Twitter feed which is quite good and informative.  They use it to get information out.  And it will survive even if a reporter or editor departs).

My concern, though, stems from the fact that there will be a new person inheriting the Michigan GOP Chairmanship from Saul.  And rather than beginning his or her term with 1,700 Twitter followers, for example, the new Chair will have to start from scratch.  In short, isn't part of the job of a Chair to create a long-term infrastructure? 

... Of course, the reason this is relevant is that it makes one wonder whether or not Mr. Anuzis would use the RNC Chairmanship to advance himself -- or to build a long-term infrastructure for the GOP.

Frankly, I'm divided on this one.  First, there is no doubt that the only reason we're even having this conversation is that (compared to most state GOP Chairmen) Mr. Anuzis was on the cutting-edge of using technology in politics. 

And while I agree Mr. Anuzis that most party/organization blogs sadly become merely a "staid, generic, party-posted blog," I also wonder why he didn't also create a MI GOP feed (in addition to his personal one), which could be passed on to a successor...