Smith Co. Republican Party Chairman resigning - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Smith Co. Republican Party Chairman resigning

Ashton Oravetz in Nov. 2012. Ashton Oravetz in Nov. 2012.

The Smith County Republican Party Chairman is resigning.

Ashton Oravetz has been working with the Smith County Republican party for more than 30 years.  Monday he announced that he will no longer be a part of a party that doesn't stand for anything, adding that the political system is beyond repair.

"Morally and ethically, I cannot be a part of the Republican Party anymore; I can't tell people to give money to the state or national party because they give it to liberals," Oravetz says.

Oravetz says the republican party has become a hollow shell of a group that no longer stands for anything and fails to follow the party's platforms.

"What should be done is, if you don't follow our platform, say 80 percent of the time... we should put somebody in the race against you. All they care about is power basically and that they keep it," says Oravetz.

Oravetz says he has been thinking about resigning since last summer, but the 2012 election was too important not to see through.

He's not getting out of politics by any means. Oravetz plans to play an important role in other political organizations made up of people he calls true constitutional conservatives.

"I plan on being very active in republican primaries and going for the conservatives and if the conservative doesn't win the primary, I will vote for anybody, no matter what their party, that is a constitutional conservative in the general election," he says.

Oravetz adds he doesn't anticipate seeing another republican elected nationally.

"You can win elections with less money, but you need the base and the republican party is losing the base. I think other county chairmen are also considering it and also will resign because they're so fed up with the establishment," Oravetz says.

When President Barack Obama was re-elected in November, Oravetz made similar statements in an interview.

"The argument is that we should stand for something, and we're not going to win elections again until we stand for our platforms," he said in November 2012.

"The Texas republican base is much more conservative than the average republican office holder, particularly at the state levels," Oravetz said.

At the time, Oravetz said there was a struggle within the party between moderates and conservatives.

"The party really doesn't stand for anything. It's a little more conservative than the democratic party, but we still have too many people who are in favor of big government," he said.

Starting Friday, the vice chair will take over Oravetz's position. In a few weeks, the precinct chairs will elect a new county chair who will serve until the next primary election.

Monday, Oravetz released a statement that explains in more detail why he was compelled to resign. Read his statement HERE.



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