Reilich would replace former GOP Boss Stephen Minarik, a former state chairman, who resigned last Friday at Brooks’ request.
“Last Friday, I said that I was elected on a platform of collaboration and working together for positive change in our community, and that I needed party leadership that reflects that,” said Brooks. “Over the past several days, as I thought about potential candidates for party chair, one person’s name kept rising above every other, and that was Assemblyman Bill Reilich.”
Reilich would stay on as an assemblyman. Reilich is well liked by county Republicans, but there are questions about whether he has the experienced political skills that Minarik brought to the job. Yet he also doesn’t have the baggage Minarik had—the reason Brooks wanted him out.
And Reilich faces a tough, first test of trying to help Sens. Joseph Robach and James Alesi retain their seats—two critical seats if Republicans want to retain their majority in the Senate.
Sources said that Republican leaders in the state were none too happy that Brooks dumped Minarik at an important time for Republicans in the state, especially in the battleground of Monroe County.
But Reilich expressed confidence in taking on the job. If Reilich is elected to the post, he would be the second assemblyman from Monroe County to also serve as county party chairman.
Assemblyman Joseph Morelle, D-Irondequoit, runs the county Democratic committee.
“It is an honor to be recommended by county executive Brooks for this position,” Reilich said. “I am confident that if I am elected by our local party, I will be able to provide a new style of leadership to help move our party in the right direction.”
A special meeting of the Monroe County Republican Committee has been scheduled for July 12 at 9:00 a.m. at the Clarion Riverside Hotel for the purpose of electing a new Chair, to serve out the remainder of Minarik’s term, which expires in September 2009.