Idaho Republicans generally consider their first-ever presidential caucus a rousing success, except among some Ron Paul voters who tried to overturn Mitt Romney's winner-take-all victory in the March 6 contest.
But Ada County Republicans have had trouble paying a $32,000 bill to rent Taco Bell Arena, which housed almost 8,200 voters at the March 6 caucus.
At Tuesday night's Ada County GOP Central Committee meeting, party Treasurer Darrel McRoberts said the party's finances were "desperate" and passed the hat for contributions. The hat came back with over $850, said Ada County Chairman Dwight Johnson on Thursday.
"The caucus was more expensive than we had planned, obviously," Johnson said, adding that the party was $2,000 short on a Taco Bell bill due June 30. "I think Darrel was overstating the 'desperate' part. He was using that to get this payment made."
Johnson said the party will have enough to pay for its Western Idaho Fair booth next month and has raised $45,000 this year. Still, the caucus left the party short on its regular duties. "We don't have as much money as we normally have to support candidates, which is a concern to us," Johnson said.
The county party's biggest annual fundraiser is the Sept. 8 Republican Roundup at Gov. Butch Otter's ranch in Star. To RSVP, email Ada GOP Secretary Dawn Hatch at email@example.com. Tickets are $25.
Johnson said he's hopeful the party will be ready for November. "We've got lots of interest, lots of enthusiasm and I'm feeling good about that."
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