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Committee Agrees to GOP Rules Change

A key committee of the California Republican Party has agreed to a rule change that will allow an early endorsement of Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger for re-election.

State G-O-P Chairman Duf Sundheim asked for the rule change so that his party will be able to pay for some early expenses if Schwarzenegger decides to run next year. Sundheim says rival Democrats are already raising money for their 2006 gubernatorial candidates.

The issue sparked a controversy on Friday when a longtime G-O-P activist resigned her seat on the party rules committee over the proposal. Dora Kingsley said the change could lead to a loss of voter confidence by discouraging challengers. Members of the committee rejected her concerns and voted 10 to zero in support of the rule change.

The rule change still needs to be approved by the entire delegation, which is expected soon.