A Republican and Democrat Both Have Trouble Figuring Out They Are the Walking Dead

The hapless Montgomery County Republican Party looked foolish earlier this week when a former county commissioner with a #metoo issue somehow thought it was a good idea to put himself up for chair of the party. From Philly.com:

It was a hell of an introduction to Tom Ellis, former Republican commissioner in Montgomery County with an alleged #metoo history. But then again, this is Montgomery County, where the GOP is so dysfunctional it’s good to have a giant stash of Advil handy before wading into its latest civil war.

“I was actually expecting your call,” Ellis blurted out when I got him on the phone Tuesday. “That was the threat that was made if I didn’t get out of the race.”

He’s right that the knives were out. Ellis was asking county Republicans to make him party chief — and forget that he made headlines in 2004 after a former fiancee requested a protection-from-abuse order against him. And forget that he made headlines again in 2010 because an ex-girlfriend-slash-county-employee accused him of harassment. Ellis told me he had long ago apologized, redeemed himself, and had only the party’s best interests at heart.

Ellis eventually withdrew from the process.

But don’t worry Republicans, Democrats are just as tone deaf. A Montgomery County attorney, Marcel Groen, who was until about a year ago chair of the party for all of Pennsylvania (until Governor Wolf told him to resign), thinks its a good idea for him to run the county party. While Groen wasn’t accused of sexual misconduct, he was criticized for how he handled allegations within the party.

First from the Philadelphia Inquirer on Groen’s resignation from the state party leadership:

Marcel Groen, the party chairman for the last three years, said in a letter released Friday morning that he was resigning at the request of Gov. Wolf. Groen, of Montgomery County, had come under fire for a series of mixed messages, controversial comments — and in some cases, silence — in response to sexual harassment allegations involving Democrats in the state.

Now from City & State regarding his interest in returning as the head of the county party:

The former head of the Pennsylvania Democratic Party is looking to ease back into a leadership role after a year of public criticism that ultimately culminated in his ejection from the state party.

Marcel Groen, who chaired the PDP from 2015 until earlier this year, told City & State PAthat he’s thinking about seeking the chairmanship of the Montgomery County Democratic Committee at the organization’s June meeting.

“I’ve had a number of friends and political folks contact me about doing it,” Groen said in a phone interview. “At this point, I’ve not made up my mind yet. But, the answer is: yes, I am interested in it.”

Groen has led the MontCo party in the past, first winning the chair in 1994. He said he would wait to see if current chair Joe Foster decided to step down before making a final decision.

So a governor has to call and tell you you are done at the state level, but somehow you think you still should lead the county party?

How these two think their history makes them good candidates to lead political parties at this time is beyond comprehension. They are basically the walking dead of politics.

Funny to see the two stories run right next to one another in PoliticsPA.com’s daily email newsletter:

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