2005-08-12 / Columnists

On The Beach

With Beverly Baxter Eric Ulrich: From Priesthood To Politics

With Beverly Baxter
Eric Ulrich: From Priesthood To Politics

BEVERLY BAXTERBEVERLY BAXTER  From the Priesthood to Politics, for Eric Ulrich, it’s all about Public Service. In a culture where there are so many career choices, it is perhaps daunting for a young person to find his or her way. For many, it takes years of exploration and contemplation, and much time spent going a long distance out of one’s way in order to come back a short distance correctly. For Eric Ulrich the calling of his life’s purpose has always been clear. From very early on, he aspired and studied for the Priesthood. It was while studying at St. Frances College that this calling was expanded and transformed to another form of service: that of public service.

ERICULRICH We live in a time where politics has become all too mean-spirited. When political power is maintained, and unchallenged, through means of coercion, intimidation, and even a kind of political “bid-rigging” within the parties as to who’s up at bat to run and who’s time has yet to come. Credible candidates and tax-paying constituents have become disenfranchised by the process, and communities have become the sole casualty. One wonders where have all the Ideologues gone?

  Well, help is on the way! There is a need for good decent moral people to answer the call of public service. There has to be. Our communities, values, and all we hold decent and dear depend upon a fair process; and we are entitled to be represented by those who truly wish to serve.

Enter Eric Ulrich, a youthful energetic articulate man who has mounted a formidable campaign for Republican District Leader in the 23rd. A.D. He has the enthusiastic endorsement of the Rockaway Republican Club, and is tandem in our mission that there be a viable Republican presence in South Queens.

“The Republican Party, particularly in South Queens, is severely broken”, states Ulrich. “Much rests upon this Primary in the 23rd A.D. Here in Rockaway, we have more Republicans than anywhere else in the district; yet the power base rests solely in Howard Beach.” According to many Rockaway Republicans, the current apathetic leadership has been “resting” too long. “What Eric Ulrich has done is sound the alarm!” states George Greco, Chairman of the Rockaway Republicans. “He has stirred the stagnant pot! It’s time for our current elected leaders, Ariola and O’Hare, to either get to work and earn their entrusted positions or get fired and replaced.”

Among the initial goals of Ulrich Leadership is to grant a Charter to the Rockaway Republican Club. “The bulk of Republicans in the district reside in Rockaway. To say, as my opponents have said, that “Rockaway doesn’t deserve a Charter” is the height of arrogance and fear,” states Ulrich. “They are afraid of our numbers and what they have failed to accomplish on our behalf. When you work hard for those you represent, or at any job you’ve been hired to do, then you don’t have to fear the loss of your position; but if you don’t show up for work, then you have a lot of explaining to do. You certainly can’t expect to stay in your position for very long!”

“We know who the Democratic District Leaders are; but when I went door to door during the petition process, I was stunned that many residents have never heard of the current Republican District Leaders,” states Breezy Point resident Marty Collins, who gathered over a hundred signatures in support of Eric Ulrich.

Perhaps the most important of initiatives that Ulrich has vowed to take on is the running of credible candidates for elected office. “When was the last time you saw a Republican name on the ballot against Audrey Pheffer?! She has sailed a long unopposed for too long!” states Ulrich. “It’s one thing that she hasn’t faced a primary within her own party, it’s unconscionable that she hasn’t faced challenge from the Republican side. This is the fault of the current leadership. They have been obstructionists to the healthy competitive process. They should be accountable for this dereliction of duty. The job of the District Leader isn’t just to appoint hired Poll Watchers! It’s to cultivate candidates for office and promote a Republican identity. My opponents have done neither. I say to them, your negligence is insulting to the Rockaway Republican constituency whom you were elected to serve. It’s time to purge the party of the non-responsiveness. I will effectuate change and see to it that the Republican banner is carried and represented. I would be humbly honored to roll up my sleeves, and work hard to carry forth the Republican torch,” insists Ulrich. 

While his opponents have ridden in tow of the well-financed Bloomberg campaign, Eric Ulrich has the support of core Republicans throughout the district. “Rockaway Republicans should feel insulted to find paid by-the-hour petition carriers who reside in Manhasset, Long Island or Manhattan at the door asking for their signature. I have the grassroots support of the general populous who live within the district, those who have a true stake in the local party support me.”

The Republican Primary is Tuesday September 13th. For Eric Ulrich, it will be a day he looks forward to with much encouragement. “The contest of a Primary is healthy. It allows people to have a say in the decision making process of their leadership. The Republican Party has been hijacked by those who want to maintain power without having earned it. They’ve been invisible; and yet they now have the sheer audacity to come out of hiding and run ads in the paper three weeks before the primary claiming their entitlement. Now they want the job?! The party belongs to me, to you, to everybody who has a sincere desire to put forth its principles. As your Republican District Leader, I’d be honored to answer the call.”          


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