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February 12, 2016

Posts in "RNC"

May 8, 2013

Super PACs Fuel GOP Civil War

Republicans who have long pushed for campaign finance deregulation are now paying for one of its consequences: the rise of influential conservative super PACs vying for the soul of a fractured GOP.

That Republicans crushed by the 2012 election results are feuding over what went wrong and what comes next is nothing new. Less noticed has been the big money bankrolling GOP factions and the influential new super PACs and outside groups that hold the party’s future in their hands.

More than a dozen such groups have sprung up since Election Day, CQ Weekly reports this week — some promoting centrists, minorities or liberalized immigration rules, others championing conservatives at odds with “establishment” party leaders. As the story notes: Full story

April 10, 2013

Shop Talk: RNC Names Director to Oversee State Party Rebuilding

Priebus is the RNC chairman. (Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The Republican National Committee on Wednesday named outgoing Oklahoma GOP Chairman Matt Pinnell as its new chief liaison to state parties.

As RNC state party director, Pinnell will lead the committee’s efforts to rejuvenate its state-based affiliations, many of which have proved ineffective since President George W. Bush left office. Pinnell will report to Chairman Reince Priebus and Political Director Chris McNulty, who are rebuilding the party based on recommendations from the RNC’s self-imposed autopsy, the “Growth and Opportunity Project.”

“At the RNC, we’re revamping our entire political field operation to be bottom-up and community based,” Priebus said in a statement. “That means the 50 state parties and territories must take a leading role.”

(See also in Roll Call: RNC Looks to Refurbish Ailing State Parties) Full story

March 18, 2013

Three Takeaways From the RNC’s Autopsy Report for 2014

Priebus announced the details of the RNC's "autopsy" report of the 2012 elections. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The Republican National Committee rolled out a massive post-2012-elections report Monday that focused on crafting what RNC Chairman Reince Priebus called a “fresh beginning” for a party that was on the losing end of a number of electoral contests last cycle.

“We know we have problems,” Priebus said to a packed ballroom at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. “We’ve identified them, and we’re implementing the solutions to fix them.”

The report’s recommendations were mostly broad in nature — better messaging, more openness to those with differing views, earlier outreach and engagement to minority groups, a stronger data infrastructure and a more robust get-out-the-vote operation.

Many of the recommendations focused on national campaigns, for example condensing the presidential primary calendar and controlling the debate schedule. But there were specific recommendations that are likely to have a more immediate effect on 2014:

Full story

By Joshua Miller Posted at 1:10 p.m.
Ads, GOTV, Polling, RNC

March 17, 2013

Priebus Announces Minority Outreach Initiative at RNC

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus announced a $10 million outreach initiative Sunday to better convey the party’s message to voters, particularly minorities.

Priebus said the GOP’s “unprecedented” self-evaluation has shown that it has a “quality of context” problem with relating to voters, largely because of “parachuting” into communities months before an election rather than building grass-roots support.

If Republicans have a level of familiarity with a community, he said, it is easier to maintain party support in situations where a candidate’s blunder – like Missouri GOP Rep. Todd Akin’s “legitimate rape” comments — could torpedo the chances for victory come Election Day.

Full story

March 4, 2013

Shop Talk: RNC Names Chris McNulty as Political Director

Priebus announced the RNC's new political director. (Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The Republican National Committee has tapped Chris McNulty to serve as its new political director.

“I am confident that Chris’s enthusiasm, energy, extensive political background at the state level, specifically in the areas of grassroots organization and ground game experience will prove invaluable as we move forward,” RNC Chairman Reince Priebus said in a statement released Monday.

McNulty comes from Speaker John A. Boehner’s political organization, where he served as executive director. He moved up the ranks of GOP politics in his native Ohio and was a regional political director at the RNC from 2006 to 2010.

Full story

February 26, 2013

Shop Talk: RNC Names Mike Shields as New Chief of Staff

Shields has a new gig at the RNC. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The Republican National Committee named Mike Shields, a longtime House GOP operative, as its new chief of staff on Tuesday.

“Mike brings a wealth of political experience with him to the RNC, having worked on the Hill and in the field, for national committees and at the state level,” RNC Chairman Reince Priebus said in a statement.

Last cycle, Shields served as political director of the National Republican Congressional Committee — an entity housed in the same building as the RNC. In 2010, Shields ran the NRCC’s independent expenditure arm.

Shields was also one of the final contenders to be National Republican Senatorial Committee executive director.

The RNC’s current chief of staff, Jeff Larson, will continue as a senior adviser to the committee, according to a press release.

Politico first reported the Shields news.

February 24, 2013

Priebus Traveling West to Meet With Minorities and Tech Experts

(Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus will head west this week to hear from minority voters and technology experts as a part of his committee’s efforts to rebuild and modernize the GOP.

Priebus’ four-day swing is scheduled to take him to Denver on Monday for a listening session with Hispanic voters and GOP activists, then to Los Angeles on Tuesday for listening sessions with Hispanic and Asian voters.

On Wednesday, Priebus will be in San Francisco for meetings with technology experts; a visit to Facebook is included on the chairman’s itinerary. Priebus will then travel to Seattle for a meeting focused on early voting, an aspect of voter turnout where Republicans continue to trail the Democrats significantly.

Priebus’ trip is part of the Growth and Opportunity Project, the RNC’s autopsy of what went wrong in the 2012 presidential election and how the GOP can improve its prospects going forward. The report, due to be publicized sometime in March, is focused on how Republicans can do better with minority voters and develop a technologically superior get-out-the-vote operation.

Full story

February 19, 2013

Supreme Court to Take Up Contribution Limits Challenge

(Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

In a move with significant campaign finance implications, the Supreme Court has agreed to consider a challenge to the aggregate limit on how much an individual may donate to political players each election cycle.

In McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission, the Republican National Committee has joined an Alabama man in challenging the limits that block an individual from giving more than $46,200 to candidates as a whole and more than $70,800 collectively to parties and political action committees in any two-year election cycle.

Full story

January 25, 2013

Priebus Easily Re-Elected RNC Chairman

Priebus was re-elected as Republican National Committee chairman. (Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Reince Priebus was re-elected as chairman of the Republican National Committee on Friday, garnering the near unanimous support of the 168 RNC voting members.

The challenges facing Priebus as the head of the Republican Party entering the 2014 cycle are different than what he dealt with when he took over in 2011. Then, Priebus was tasked with overhauling RNC operations, including paying off a $24 million debt and rehabilitating its image among GOP donors. But he was buoyed at the time by fresh enthusiasm from big wins in the 2010 midterm elections.

This time around, the RNC is in good shape financially — the committee ended 2012 debt free and with $4.7 million in the bank. But the result of the 2012 elections left the party faithful deflated: The party’s brand is in the tank nationally, emerging demographic voting blocs favor the Democrats, and the GOP also finds itself trailing its opposition in the ability to target and turn out voters. Full story

Stop Obsessing Over Budget, Jindal Tells Hill GOP

Jindal spoke at the Republican National Committee's winter meeting Thursday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Stop obsessing over the federal budget and start focusing on policies that benefit the middle class and stimulate economic growth. That’s the message Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal has for congressional Republicans as the GOP charts a path forward post-2012.

In a speech at the Republican National Committee ‘s winter meeting a few blocks from where President Barack Obama was nominated for a second term, Jindal delivered tough advice to a party trying to rebound after a rough 2012 election cycle. That included an admonition to stop being the “stupid party.”

But in remarks focused on the need for the GOP to prioritize reaching out to, and persuading, voters of all political stripes and backgrounds, Jindal also offered pointed advice for Republicans on Capitol Hill.

“A debate about which party can better manage the federal government is a very small and shortsighted debate. If our vision is not bigger than that, we do not deserve to win,” Jindal said Thursday evening. “Today’s conservatism is completely wrapped up in solving the hideous mess that is the federal budget, the burgeoning deficits, the mammoth federal debt, the shortfall in our entitlement programs … even as we invent new entitlement programs. We seem to have an obsession with government bookkeeping.” Full story

By David M. Drucker Posted at 10:41 a.m.
RGA, RNC

January 24, 2013

RNC Report to Address Candidate Recruiting

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Improving candidate recruitment at all levels is a key focus of a Republican National Committee project to overhaul GOP operations and position the party to better compete in the 2014 and 2016 elections.

The five-member task force appointed to examine the Republican Party’s weaknesses and chart a path forward said recommendations on attracting appealing, demographically diverse candidates to run for office at all levels will likely be included in its report, due in March. Task force members said the GOP must engage in a concerted, prolonged effort to recruit talented politicians — particularly women and ethnic minorities — if the party hopes to keep pace with the Democrats.

“This is not a difficult equation to complete,” Sally Bradshaw, a Republican consultant and task force member from Florida, told reporters during a news conference to update the group’s progress. Full story

Nevada Ron Paul Supporters to Nominate Priebus

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Reince Priebus, running unchallenged for re-election as Republican National Committee chairman, has secured the support of Nevada GOP Chairman Michael McDonald and Silver State RNC committeeman James Smack, sources said Thursday afternoon.

In fact, McDonald and Smack are set to serve as two of the six nominators (two each from three different states) that Priebus needs to secure on a position on the ballot.

Although Priebus’ re-election is not in doubt, their decision to back the incumbent chairman could prove significant for the RNC moving forward. Both supported former Texas Rep. Ron Paul’s failed 2012 bid for the GOP presidential nomination, and last year’s takeover of the Nevada GOP by Paul supporters caused top Silver State Republicans, the RNC and White House nominee Mitt Romney to build a shadow party to handle the basic political activities usually overseen by the state party.

Dysfunctional state parties in key states, such as Nevada, are believed to be among the factors that put Romney and other Republican candidates at a disadvantage against President Barack Obama and downticket Democrats last cycle.

RNC members are in Charlotte for the party’s annual winter meeting as the GOP attempts to chart a path forward in the aftermath of the November elections, in which Obama was handily re-elected and Democrats netted two Senate seats. Among the lingering issues from the 2012 cycle was a small division that opened up between the Republican establishment and Paul supporters, who remain active in various state parties.

January 23, 2013

RNC Meets in Charlotte for Winter Meeting

Members of the Republican National Committee descended upon Charlotte, N.C., on Wednesday to kick off the committee’s three-day winter meeting.

The headline of the RNC’s post-election meeting is always the race for chairman, but this year Reince Priebus, who was first elected in 2011, appears headed to a comfortable re-election. Despite a convincing victory in November for President Barack Obama, Priebus is credited with getting the RNC out of debt, and he has claimed an overwhelming majority of support among the RNC’s 168 voting members.

Beyond Friday’s officer elections, the gathering in Charlotte — where Democrats held their national convention in September — also features training sessions and business meetings, including debates over rules changes. The theme this year is to renew, grow and win, and the strategy sessions will focus on the tools needed to appeal to a wider range of voters and ultimately win more elections.

January 4, 2013

Obama Campaign Fined $375,000

The Federal Election Commission has imposed a $375,000 fine on President Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign for reporting violations, Politico is reporting, citing as-yet-unpublished FEC documents.

The fine appears to stem from missing reports for close to 1,300 donations totaling more than $1.8 million, according to Politico, which obtained a copy of a conciliation agreement that was shared with the Republican National Committee, one of the original complainants. The fine is described as one of the largest-ever imposed on a presidential campaign.

Obama campaign spokeswoman Katie Hogan told Politico that at the time, the Obama team was collecting record contributions from more than 3 million donors, and that “the very few outstanding questions about the $750 million that was raised have now all been resolved.”

In other FEC news, Commissioner Cynthia Bauerly has announced that she will resign effective Feb. 1. The move is sure to increase pressure on Obama to name new members to the frequently-deadlocked FEC, which is comprised mostly of holdover commissioners.

Bauerly, a Democrat, is one of five commissioners on the six-member commission whose terms have expired. Activists opposed to unrestricted political money have become increasingly shrill in their demands that Obama name new commissioners, staging press conferences and launching a petition drive aimed at forcing a White House response.

December 17, 2012

Rehabbing Nevada GOP a Priority for Priebus in 2nd RNC Term

Priebus is running for a second term as Republican National Committee chairman. (Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

As Reince Priebus sketches his agenda for another term as chairman of the Republican National Committee, rehabilitating a set of dysfunctional state parties has emerged as a top priority, particularly in key battlegrounds such as Nevada.

In an interview, Priebus confirmed that he has held multiple conversations with the Nevada Republican Party chairman and other Silver State GOP officials, with meetings planned in January to discuss how the RNC might help the Nevada GOP transform itself. The party was so organizationally debilitated throughout 2012 that it was incapable of performing even basic party-building activities, causing the RNC and top state Republicans to form a shadow party to run essential operations such as voter turnout.

“Clearly being successful at the RNC requires having state parties that are extremely successful as well,” Priebus told CQ Roll Call late last week. “That means raising funds and building armies and doing all the work on the ground and on the financial sides to be successful, and we recognize that in some areas we need to make improvements.”

Full story

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