Karl Rove speaks about local Republican party leadership issues

By Jonathan Walsh - bio | email

Posted by Dave Dykema - email

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - A well-known Republican came to the Glass City Thursday night to take part in a party fundraiser.

Author, columnist, Fox news contributor and former senior presidential advisor to George W. Bush, Karl Rove spoke at Gladieux Meadows in south Toledo while the Lucas Co. Republicans are fighting over who's in charge.

Jeff Simpson recently declared himself party chair. Jon Stainbrook, who's been the chair since 2008, says there was a letter drafted Thursday by Lucas Co. Prosecutor Julia Bates asking the Secretary of State to help settle the dispute because it's affecting the elections process.

Rove took notice of the dispute, making a strong suggestion to local Republicans.

"If you care about the future of our country, to unify and join together and fight like heck to bring the kind of change that we really want to see in this country, which is conservative principles brought into action after the election of 2010," Rove said, hinting for the two men to come together.

Both Stainbrook and Simpson were at the fundraiser. News 11 asked each about the importance of the event.

"Not one person has called and said 'what's going on?' Everybody knows it's an exciting event and everybody knows it's 110-percent positive," Stainbrook said.

"Whatever the dispute there is, whatever conflict or drama is going on, we can come together and support a guy who we all like, support a guy we all admire and put the axes down for the evening," Simpson said.

Rove says it's especially important because of the Senate win in Massachusetts and the message that victory has sent to the White House about government and healthcare.

Former Ohio Sen. Mike DeWine agreed. "Democrats who are in marginal congressional districts and marginal states are going to think long and hard about this bill before voting for it."

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