Sean Parnell gets the crowd excited for the upcoming election cycle in Robinson where Republicans have candidates running for several key local positions.
By Chadwick Dolgos
A crowd of about 70 gathered both indoors and out at Robinson’s All Star Sports Bar & Grill to celebrate members of the township’s Republican party.
The March 10 event, organized by residents Roberta Corpuz and Maureen Malick, was held to reorganize members of the Grand Old Party who live or own businesses in Robinson, where they say Republican leadership is lacking.
“Republicans have been canceled in Robinson for so long — no representation,” said Corpuz.
In 2021 the Robinson Republicans will be campaigning for members running for seats in the township and on the Montour School Board. Corpuz and Malick are joining Mindy Houser in declaring candidacy for the three board of commissioners seats up for election this year.
Malick says the campaigning will also focus on the Montour School Board, “which is mostly always filled with Democrats.”
The relaunch is a result of Malick and Corpuz engaging in grassroots efforts in the township during the presidential election. They say they discovered a large portion of Robinson’s voting population was Republican. They called their approach in arriving at that conclusion “unscientific.”
Voter data from the 2020 general election suggest Robinson’s approximately 11,500 registered voters are fairly evenly split between both major parties. Democrats cast ballots for party nominee Joe Biden to the tune of 4,443, while Republican candidate Donald Trump received 4,770.
Both Corpuz and Malick went door to door, attended rallies and placed yard signs to energize Robinson Republicans during the 2020 election.
They also secured former congressional candidate Sean Parnell, who was defeated by Rep. Conor Lamb in the November 2020 election, as guest speaker for the group’s March 10th event.
Parnell focused his speech on the aftermath of the election and encouraging those present to stay involved in politics.
“Local elections matter,” said Parnell. “We got a lot of great local candidates, school board candidates, and candidates running for judge. Campaign for them like you would the President of the United States.”
The resurgence comes less than two years after a once active Robinson Township Republican Committee faded from existence, following then chairman Jack Cairns’ June 2019 resignation, which was prompted by a series of Cairns’ anti-Islamic social media posts becoming public.
Corpuz said issues with the former group were before her time.
“We’re starting over,” said Malick.
Robinson Republicans plan to continue meeting on the third Wednesday of the month at All Star Sports Bar & Grille, Heritage Square, 6302 Robinson Centre Drive. The next meeting will be held at 7 p.m. on April 21.