Archive for the ‘RNC’ Category
If Mitt Romney keeps beating President Obama in the fundraising battle, this race could get rather lopsided relatively quickly. July wasn’t a terrible month for President Obama:
@BarackObama Reporting back on last month’s fundraising numbers: In July, 761,000 people donated to raise over $75 million for this campaign. Thank you.
It’s just that Mitt had a significantly better month than President Obama and the DNC:
Mitt Romney and the Republican National Committee brought in $101.3 million in July, making that the second consecutive month that the GOP nominee’s fundraising cracked the $100 million mark.
The Romney campaign, the RNC and the Romney Victory Fund have a combined $185.9 million in the bank, the Romney campaign announced.
Romney’s receipts almost match his June haul of $106 million and may position him to extend his cash-on-hand lead over the president. For all the rough news weeks Romney has endured lately, his campaign treasury doesn’t seem to have suffered for it.
First, Mitt hasn’t had a rough couple of weeks. That’s just the storyline established by Mssrs. Axelrod and Plouffe, then parroted by their media puppets.
People living outside the DC echochamber recognize that Mitt impressed people in Israel. His statement about the Palestinians won’t hurt him. Further, people living outside the DC echochamber were impressed with Mitt’s speech in Poland.
It’s true that Mitt shouldn’t have said anything about the Olympics but that’s another tempest in a teapot issue that the DC media is throwing a hissy fit over but that voters just ignore. They’re worried that President Obama hasn’t gotten the economy jumpstarted. They’re worried that the ACA will hurt businesses.
The Obama train is quickly turning into a trainwreck. The real polling shows him in tough shape in the battleground states.
By the time the Democrats’ (abbreviated and underfunded) convention closes, they might be riding a 3-month fundraising losing streak. That’s a terrible position to be in heading into the final sprint.
The contents of the article aren’t a joy to the Obama campaign either:
(Reuters) – Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney and Republican groups raised more than $76.8 million in May, his campaign said on Thursday, topping the $60 million President Barack Obama and his Democratic allies hauled in.
The campaign and Republican National Committee have $107 million cash on hand, the campaign said.
(Reporting By Patricia Zengerle)
This is the worst news President Obama could get from the campaign operation. First, news that President Obama’s major ad blitz didn’t barely move the needle of public opinion. Next, the news that he’ll actually be outfundraised (and probably by a pretty wide margin) won’t cheer him up, either.
This is shaping up to be another miserable morning for the Obama campaign. It’s time for Mssrs. Axelrod and Plouffe to order more cases of Maalox.
First, I’ll start by saying I don’t consider Pat Anderson the enemy. There’s just an issue where the two of us disagree philosophically. In fact, this post is mostly about philosophical differences. In fact, that’s all this is.
At a State Convention gathering, more than a few people were talking about “the Stebbins email.” One of the people talking about it forwarded it to me. Here’s the text of the email:
From: Marianne Stebbins
To: Marianne Stebbins
Sent: Wed, May 16, 2012 8:52 pm
Subject: Don’t forget that State Central immediately follows the convention on Saturday
Up for election are the National Committeeman and National Committeewoman positions. The primary contest there is for Committeewoman, where both Pat Anderson, current Committeewoman is being challenged by Janet Beihoffer.
I take care to not twist arms, but would like you to consider that Pat Anderson has been friendly to us, helpful in many ways. Beihoffer has been engaging in some nasty campaigning against Pat, while Pat has been taking the high road.
Please stay for State Central on Saturday if at all possible. This is an important vote for the future direction of our party.
I don’t have a problem with the RP people who are State Central delegates voting for the candidate of their choice. What I’ve got a major problem with is hearing anyone say that Janet “has been engaging in some nasty campaigning against Pat.” I’ve read what Janet’s said. I’ll stipulate that Janet’s said some hardhitting things.
Characterizing Janet’s communications as “nasty campaigning” just isn’t accurate. A number of Janet’s supporters have taken issue with some of the things Pat’s done. Most of those disputes involve Pat’s lobbying for Racino.
Purely from a limited government policy standpoint, I can’t support Racino. I can’t figure out how a person can be a limited government conservative while supporting giving government another revenue stream to increase the size of government.
That’s why I can’t understand the Paul supporters supporting another revenue stream to government. They’re supposed to be the ultimate believers in limited government conservatism.
I’ve heard Paul’s supporters say that they’re defending the principles of free market capitalism. Racino isn’t free market capitalism. According to their own website, Racino “would be paid for in full by Canterbury Park and Running Aces Harness Park.” That’s an awfully limited market. That’s the opposite of a free market.
It’s time Congressman Paul’s supporters admitted that they aren’t the pure-hearted free market guy their champion is.
Ed’s post about the fundraising reports for Team Obama/DNC and Team Mitt/RNC is fascinating on multiple levels. This is the part that most fascinates me:
As I write in my column, it’s not just Obama and his team, but also his allies in the media. The more they talk, the more people they alienate from Obama. And the more that happens, the fewer donations they get, and the more in both voters and contributors that Romney and the RNC can attract. This should be a very interesting summer in the fundraising race.
The reason I find this fascinating is because Axelrod and Carney have talked at length about how this would be a choice election. While there’s no doubt that President Obama, Axelrod and Carney want it to be a choice election, it appears as though the American people are saying that they’re treating it like a referendum on President Obama.
This should frighten the administration because their record isn’t popular. The stimulus stinks. O’Care isn’t popular, either. The early Obama bailouts are failures. The Solyndra scandal, a biproduct of the stimulus, is a portrait of the worst of DC. Job Growth has been lethargic and inconsistent.
In short, there’s nothing for the American people to rally around in terms of President Obama’s record. That’s hardly the type of thing a campaign wants to hear as we near the home stretch.
I’ve meant to write about something earlier in the week but I’ll include it here. President Obama is criticizing Mitt about his time at Bain Capital. That’s fair game. I went after Mitt’s record at Bain Capital, too.
The thing is that President Obama played the role of venture capitalist when they shipped billions of dollars to Solyndra, GM, BofA and other multi-national corporations.
Simply put, Mitt’s record as a private sector venture capitalist is stronger than President Obama’s record as a public sector venture capitalist. In fact, President Obama is a total failure as a venture capitalist.
This weekend, supporters of Pat Anderson sent out this email endorsing Pat Anderson to be re-elected as RNC Committeewoman:
As members of your State Executive Committee who served over the past year, we write in support of the re-election of Pat Anderson for National Committeewoman.
While the main focus of her position is to serve as your representative to the RNC and to help elect a Republican President, Congressmen and Senators from Minnesota, Pat also serves with us on the State Executive Committee of the Republican Party.
We have worked closely with Pat. She is an excellent leader with valuable insight and varied experience as an elected official in local and statewide office. This is an exceptional asset for our Party. But most importantly, she is honest and fair in the way she approaches both the opportunities and difficulties facing the MNGOP.
Over the last 12 months, we have seen dramatic changes in leadership at the state party. The Chair, Deputy Chair, Secretary/Treasurer, and half of the CD Chairs are new. We need someone like Pat who has historic knowledge of the ins and outs of the MNGOP and can mentor the new leadership as we chart a course for our Party.
Without Pat Anderson on the Executive Board of the Republican Party of Minnesota, it would have taken much, much longer to uncover the party’s serious financial mismanagement. Pat did her homework and asked tough, pointed questions last May and June about the financial health of the party. She was asking those questions when few other people were and she was doing it while being attacked by party leadership determined to hide their financial misdeeds.
Pat’s investigation of the party’s FEC and State Campaign Finance reports led to the establishment of a Financial Review Committee in October which eventually led to the full exposure of the party’s financial problems. Without Pat Anderson’s work and determination, we may still be operating in the dark today. Playing “auditor” was not in Pat’s job description as your National Committeewoman, but we are grateful that she and others took on that role to relentlessly pursue the answers and the truth.
As we continue to recover from our past leadership’s mismanagement, we must also look to the future. We need to support our US Senate Candidate, our Presidential Nominee, as well as our local endorsed candidates. As a former Mayor and State Auditor, Pat is uniquely qualified to understand what it takes to win a statewide race as well as a local election. Pat’s experience and knowledge is a valuable resource for the State Executive Team, and at the National level where she is doing an excellent job in representing Minnesota’s concerns at the RNC.
We are supporting Pat Anderson for re-election at the State Central Committee meeting in St. Cloud, because she is one of the most valuable assets this party has. We urge you to support her as well.
I don’t have a vote in this election but I’ve certainly got an opinion into this endorsement letter. Here’s something that I question:
Without Pat Anderson on the Executive Board of the Republican Party of Minnesota, it would have taken much, much longer to uncover the party’s serious financial mismanagement.
First, it’s been reported by more than a few people that RNC Committeeman Jeff Johnson did the initial digging into the RPM’s financial mismanagement. Until I hear otherwise, that’s who I’ll give credit to.
Second, it’s impossible to think that Janet Beihoffer would’ve tolerated the financial mismanagement within the state party. It’s impossible to think that Janet Beihoffer wouldn’t have tried getting to the bottom of this serious issue.
It’s equally impossible to think that she wouldn’t have gotten to the bottom of that mess, especially considering the fact that Janet Beihoffer was a CPA with years of experience working for KPMG. At the time, KPMG was the second biggest auditing firm in the United States.
Anyone who’s known Janet Beihoffer knows that she’s a no-nonsense person who knows how to get important things done. For proof of that, look at the work she’s done on training election workers. That’s a major project. It required dedication, discipline and skill putting the program together, then recruiting and training the people to man the polling stations.
While I’m not reflexively opposed to lobbyists, I will always oppose lobbyists that support giving government the tools needed to expand government. In lobbying for Racino, that’s what Pat Anderson supported.
I won’t trash Pat Anderson. I’ll just vehemently disagree with her on that decision.
During my trip around the Rightosphere this morning, 2 things are abundantly clear: 1) Mitt and the RNC don’t see what’s about to hit them from President Obama and 2) Mitt and the RNC don’t see the seething anger building up against them from the activist base. Two posts highlight that second point brilliantly. Let’s start with Erick Erickson’s post first:
The fix is in for Romney, which just means when he is crushed by Barack Obama a lot of Republicans will have a lot of explaining to do. Newt may not be able to win. But Romney sure as hell can’t beat Obama either if Newt can’t win. The problem remains Gingrich supporters intrinsically know this to be so and are happy to die fighting. Romney’s supporters are still deluding themselves.
While I don’t agree that Newt doesn’t have a chance, I certainly agree that Mitt’s people are delusional.
Dan Riehl’s post has a harder bite to it:
For Romney to attack every conservative from the Right, when he is so obviously and so far to the Left of them, demonstrates a complete lack of character and integrity. But slash and burn is all he has, as he has no core conservative principles and can’t articulate them in an authentic manner. As much as I hate Obama’s politics, as an individual, I have more respect for him today, than I do Mitt Romney. And I am far from alone. If the GOP doesn’t realize what that will cost in soft support, or no support at all in the Fall, they are delusional.
With the advent of new media, too many people are seeing, talking and connecting today. The GOP in Washington is not the party of Reagan, it is a party on its way to the political wilderness for a decade or more without serious reform. The clearest sign of that is the support a Ron Paul pulls. It is 2 – 4 times what it should be and is a telling sign of just how many people have written, or are in the process of writing off the GOP establishment.
I agree with everything Dan said. The leadership at RNC HQ sucks. In fact, I’ll add to Dan’s thoughts with this:
1. When it comes to social media and the internet, Mitt’s team, like the RNC, moves at the speed of government. You could see Mitt’s surprise last night when, during the break, CNN checked on whose ad was running the disparaging remarks about Speaker Gingrich. In fact, if you watch the tape, you’ll see Mitt deflate immediately after that.
2. It’s been 28 years since Reagan won re-election and the RNC still hasn’t figured it out that you can’t win elections if the base isn’t enthusiastically behind the nominee. It just won’t happen. Each election cycle, the Establishment tells us that squishies like Bob Dole, John McCain and Mitt Romney have a shot at winning.
Initially, I thought ‘you’d think that they would’ve figured out that that isn’t true, especially after last year’s midterm romp.’ Then it dawned on me: These Establishmentarians figured you can win with conservatives but that isn’t what they want. They’d rather have ‘compassionate conservatives’ than true conservatives.
3. When has Mitt fought for anything? Has Mitt fought for anything? I haven’t seen proof of it yet. In Massachusetts, Mitt certainly didn’t fight to keep Planned Parenthood off the MassHealth payment policy advisory board.
4. We know that Newt’s a fighter because he’s fought his own president on tax increases. He fought for 16 years to create a GOP House majority. He insisted that we balance the budget ASAP.
5. This is the most important of all. Mitt’s scorched earth campaign will kill him next fall when the TEA Party activists work to elect conservative congressmen, senators and state legislators but don’t lift a finger to get Mitt elected. That’s what happens when the nominee torches each of his opponents.
6. If you think that the TEA Party got riled up in August, 2009 through the midterms, you ain’t seen nothing yet. After Mitt loses, there’ll be a major housecleaning at the RNC. The worthless strategists that collect nice salaries but don’t have 2 brain cells rubbing together will be dispatched.
Squishie enablers like NRO’s editorial board, Charles Krauthammer, George Will, Hugh Hewitt, Jennifer Rubin, S.E. Cupp and Ann Coulter will be political roadkill. Good riddance.
Don’t say the activists didn’t try warning you.
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LFR has gotten the following letter expressing the CD-8 GOP’s disgust with Pat Anderson’s lobbying for expanded gambling:
Tuesday, May 03, 2011
Minnesota State GOP Executive Committee
525 Park St # 250
Saint Paul, MN 55103-2145
Since being elected National Committeewoman on April 16th, Pat Anderson has publicly obfuscated the intent of the Minnesota GOP platform regarding the expansion of gambling.
Ms. Anderson has undertaken the advancement of expanded gambling in contravention of the pertinent and unambiguous platform provision, to wit: “We seek to eliminate all state-sponsored gambling and oppose any expansion of gambling in Minnesota.”
Ms. Anderson, through her actions, has caused unacceptable and irretrievable harm to this Congressional District organization in the form of negative publicity.
The consequences of Ms. Anderson’s actions were surely known to her or should have been known to a prudent person. This lack of prudent conduct along with her blatant disregard for the MNGOP Platform make Ms. Anderson an unacceptable representative of this organization on the Republican National Committee.
The Minnesota State GOP Executive Committee must take purposeful and expeditious action to request that Ms. Anderson resign from the honored position of GOP National Committeewoman.
Notwithstanding her response or cooperation, prompt action must be taken to replace Ms. Anderson by arranging an election for that purpose consistent with the provisions of MNGOP’s Constitution.
Ted Lovdahl, Chair 8th CDGOP
By unanimous vote of the executive board, May 10, 2011
Pat Anderson either had been offered the job of lobbying for expanding gambling or knew that a formal offer was forthcoming when she stood for election to be the next RNC committeewoman.
That she said nothing about this lobbying job is sufficient grounds for removing her from the position of RNC committeewoman. The job of RNC committeewoman shouldn’t be a placeholder position to run for office. Instead, it should be a position that builds, strengthens and grows the party.
That can’t happen if the party platform says one thing and high ranking officials within the party opposes a key portion of the state party platform.
I’d argue that expanding gambling is a major part of the Republican Party platform because it would be another source of revenue at a time when the Republican Party is trying to return to its roots of limited government conservatism.
It’s inconsistent to think that adding additional revenue fits with limiting the size and scope of government. Simply put, they don’t fit whatsoever.
If Ms. Anderson wants to be a lobbyist, that’s her right. With that right, however, comes the consequence that it eliminates her as an effective spokesperson for the party advocating a return to the principles of limited government.
The Republican Party, both at the state and the national level, faces a time of choosing. We must either take seriously the principles of limited government or we should be satisfied with being seen as the party that doesn’t mean what it says.
I agree wholeheartedly with the CD-8 Executive Committee’s unanimous vote.
Tomorrow, I’ll be participating in my county’s BPOU convention. I will put my name into nomination to be a state central delegate. If anyone asks who I’m supporting to be the next RNC committeewoman, I’ll tell them that I’m supporting Janet Beihoffer.
Anyone who’s known Janet knows that she’s the type of person who knows how to get things done, no matter the size of the challenge. Janet’s known some difficult political challenges & met those challenges.
Starting with her training people to be election judges to her GOTV training system, Janet is equipped to meet the challenges that the RNC faces.
That’s before talking about Janet’s communications & marketing skills. If there’s anything that the RNC desperately needs, it’s someone who understands communications.
Janet is a woman of exceptional skills and unparalleled drive.
That’s why I’m proudly supporting Janet.
I’ve never seen a political environment like the one we’re seeing this year. According to the Tarrance Group’s polling, Gene Taylor is now in trouble:
A memo from The Tarrance Group, one of the country’s top Republican polling firms who conducted polling for Haley Barbour’s 2003 and 2007 gubernatorial elections, suggests Republican state Representative Steven Palazzo has a real chance to defeat twenty-year incumbent Democratic Congressman Gene Taylor.
The poll of likely voters in Mississippi’s Fourth District conducted September 21-22 shows Taylor below 50% and only 4 points ahead of Palazzo (45% to 41%). Two percent of voters support 3rd party candidates and 12 percent are undecided. The poll has a 5.8% margin of error.
Palazzo leads by 11 points among voters “extremely” likely to vote and by 13 points among those who know both candidates (66% of all voters). According to polling memo, “Nearly half (47%) of voters have already made up their mind that it is time for a new person in office, while only 40% say Taylor deserves re-election. Intensity is clearly on the side of Palazzo. While 73% of his likely voters are ‘extremely’ likely to vote in November, only 51% of Taylor voters are ‘extremely” likely.’” The poll reports 64 percent of Fourth District voters disapprove of Democratic President Barack Obama’s job performance.
The Tarrance Group is a well-respected polling firm run by longtime GOP pollster Ed Goeas. Mr. Goeas has been one of the most respected pollsters since the late 1980s.
The most troubling information in the article is that 47% of likely voters have decided to not vote for Rep. Taylor. That’s an astonishingly high number, especially for someone who wasn’t supposed to be in any difficulty.
With voter intensity favoring Republicans, it appears as though Taylor is facing an uphill fight.
Republican National Chairman Michael Steele rode his Fire Pelosi Bus into Southaven last week as 200 Republicans cheered with every expectation that Republican state Senator Alan Nunnelee would defeat incumbent Democratic Congressman Travis Childers in November and contribute a vote toward “firing” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Nunnelee’s polls have him in the lead, the district is conservative and disapproving of national Democrats, the incumbent Childers is on the attack, and the wind of the national anti-incumbent mood is at Nunnelee’s back.
Steele is traveling the country in a bus emblazed with “Need A Job? Fire Pelosi.” Steele said the GOP has established 330 victory centers across the country and is competing in all 50 states with 100 targeted congressional districts.
The Fire Pelosi Express is firing people up wherever it’s stopping. That’s scary for Democrats because Republicans weren’t lacking enthusiasm prior to this.
What’s even scarier is that, though Republicans will gain seats in the south, the south won’t be where they’ll gain the most seats. States like Pennsylvania, Ohio, New York, Indiana and Michigan will all be better states for Republicans this November.
Things will deteriorate as Republicans start campaigning on the Democrats’ inability to pass a budget or extend the Bush tax cuts. The fact that they left DC earlier than in past election years just compounds their problems.
Voters want to know that Congress is doing everything it can to put pro-growth policies in place so people can return to work. Pelosi’s congress has been better at putting people on food stamps than on returning them to employment.
Taylor isn’t the only incumbent who’s in trouble. John Salazar, brother of Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, is in trouble, too:
Michael Steele, chairman of the Republican National Committee, rolled in on a red bus with “Fire Pelosi” painted on the side, a reference to U.S. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi. Steele gave a pep talk to a group of 60 enthusiastic Republicans at the GOP campaign office in a strip mall in this Democratic stronghold.
“You have been tired, ticked off, fed up, frustrated and ready to act, ready to do something, because you have witnessed a government that has stopped listening to you,” Steele said.
Tipton, of Cortez, is running against U.S. Rep. John Salazar, D-Manassa, for the 3rd Congressional District seat, and about a dozen Salazar supporters protested outside the GOP office.
This Tarrance Group memo shouldn’t comfort Democrats, especially this part:
While the impact of the â€œangry independentsâ€ has been a complicating factor in some Republican primaries, with those primaries being fairly close to an end, look for their focus to become even more focused on Washington and the Democrats in control of the White House, Senate, and the U.S. House of Representatives. Yes, this political environment has been strongly anti-incumbent, but look for it to become much more anti-Washington and anti-Democratic over the next seven weeks. Fully sixty-two percent (62%) of voters think the country is on the wrong track, including eighty-one percent (81%) of Republicans and sixty-two percent (62%) of ticket splitters. Voters who are dissatisfied with the direction of the country tend to blame the party in power for this condition. With the Democrats in control of both Congress and the White House, they will be absorbing much of the blame for this high level of voter dissatisfaction.
In addition, this survey finds the generic Congressional ballot tied (43%-43%). On this generic ballot, Republicans hold significant advantages with key demographic groups like seniors (52%-33%), those who disapprove of the work of both parties in Congress (55%-25%), and those who are extremely likely to vote (46%-40%). Most importantly, when looking at the turnout model of likely 2010 voters, the generic ballot moves to 50% Republican and 42% Democratic, an eight-point advantage. All of this is reinforced by the fact that when asked who will control the House and the Senate after the election, by a nine-point margin on both questions voters feel the Republicans will control those chambers.
The most troubling part of this paragraph is that, when factoring in the turnout model, the generic ballot advantage is 8 points. Couple that with the fact that many of the Democrats’ seats are in areas where they win with 65-75 percent of the vote and you have some insight into the disaster awaiting Democrats this year.
This information should scare Democrats:
Congressional Republicans also have strong advantages over Congressional Democrats on critical fiscal issues like holding down taxes (53%-26%) and controlling wasteful spending (42%-28%).
In most people’s minds, taxes equals job creation. In other words, Republicans hold an overwhelming edge on the 2 most important issues of this election.
Nothing says domination like that.
Since President Obama’s election last November, pundits have been writing the GOP’s obituaries on a weekly basis. This week’s obituary was written by Dick Polman, who stated thus:
Let us briefly sift the ashes. The party right now has no coherent message, aside from “Do Not Offend Rush Limbaugh.” Its messengers are basically conservatives who speak to the choir. It has virtually zilch appeal beyond its base, as evidenced by the ’08 election and every subsequent poll; the party is alienating suburbanites, independents, Latinos (the fastest-growing cohort in the electorate), and people under age 30 (the voters who will dominate for the next half century).
Since the GOP “has virtually zilch appeal beyond its base”, perhaps Mr. Polman can explain why Republicans led Democrats in the generic ballot question this week. That’s after having gone several years of trailing Democrats on that question. How can the GOP lead in the generic ballot question if they’re losing ground on all these demographic groups? It’d be interesting to hear a coherent explanation on that.
It’s worth asking whether young people will continue preferring President Obama and Speaker Pelosi if they don’t change their spending habits. I’m betting that they won’t because young people understand that their standard of living drops each time interest on the debt sucks money that could’ve been lent to entrepreneurs who wanted to grow their businesses.
Salena Zito’s column takes a different perspective:
What he has left behind with his switch to the other team is everyone under the sun, as he gleefully dances on the supposed grave of the Republican Party after proclaiming its death by a thousand cuts.
“I think the reports of the death of the Republican Party are greatly exaggerated,” says Texas Tech political science professor Tim Nokken. “It’s been a rough couple of years for the GOP, but that doesn’t equate with death.”
So, no going the way of the Whigs, which is exactly what self-agonizing Democrats said about themselves after yet another defeat in the 2004 presidential and congressional election. “Many smart strategists were wondering if the Democratic Party was ever going to win a national election again,” says Democrat strategist Steve McMahon. Well into 2005, serious doubt existed that the 2006 midterms would be any better, he adds.
To understand what we need to do to regain majority party status, let’s ask these simple questions:
- Did the American people suddenly wake up in late 2005 & say “I’m sick of the government spending my money efficiently”?
- Did the American people suddenly wake up in late 2005 & say that they didn’t want their government doing everything necessary to prevent another terrorist attack?
- Did the American people suddenly wake up in late 2005 & say they weren’t being taxed enough?
I’nm betting that the American people don’t grow tired of being protected from terrorist attacks or having their money spent efficiently on America’s needs. Likewise, I’m positive that the American people, with a few exceptions, don’t think that they need a higher tax burden. But that’s just me.
We’d be wise to take some important points from Salena’s column about Michael Steele. Here’s one that’s especially worthwhile:
Democratic strategist Steve McMahon has worked with Dean for years and has known Steele since his days as a Maryland Republican committeeman. He says the new GOP chairman must adopt a 50-state program, as Dean did, to get his party back on track.
“His challenge is to recapture independents without pushing out the base,” he explained. The hardest part is pushing against the party’s nay-sayers who favor winning here and there rather than taking time to build for the future. “Steele has to remain focused,” McMahon said. “Do that, and the GOP will compete not just regionally but across the board again.”
Rebuild the Party started advocating the 50-state strategy right after the election. Instead of calling it the 50-state program, they’ve titled their approach the 435 district strategy:
By 2012, the Republican Party will field candidates in all 435 Congressional districts in America, from inner city Philadelphia to suburban Dallas, and our leaders must be held accountable for progress towards this goal. With an 80 plus vote margin separating Democrats from Republicans in the House, it’s time to widen the playing field, not narrow it. While our targeting has gotten narrower, honing in on a class of seats we feel entitled to because they lean Republican, Democrats have been stealing traditionally 60-40 Republican seats right and left. It’s time to return the favor.
What’s more, it won’t be good enough to run perfunctory races in safe seats. 2008 showed us that every seat, Republican or Democrat, is potentially a target. If you aren’t seriously challenged this time, chances are you’ll be challenged the next time, or the time after that. Incumbents who don’t prepare for this reality will find themselves scrambling to catch up when the inevitable happens. That means that our party needs to set a new standard that campaigns will be professional and fully staffed in each and every seat.
With few exceptions, every district should be considered a hotly contested district. Being competitive requires good messaging, good candidates and adequate funding. Being winners includes those things plus lots of hard work. The minute people start saying that they’re willing to run through walls to get good candidates elected is the minute the GOP will experience a rebound.
Here’s another Polman observation:
Fortunately, there are still some reality-based Republicans. Kristen Soltis, the research director at a top GOP polling firm, warned the other day that her party “is facing changing demographic forces that present a challenge to its long-term growth.” Translation: Unless the party wakes up and diversifies, it is toast.
It isn’t that we shouldn’t diversify. It’s that we should do it the right way. Doing things the right way is fairly simple: Be yourself. Make the most of each opportunity to tell people why limited government is in their best interest. Tell people why strict constructionist judges are the best guarantee that justice is served. Remind people that low taxes and fiscal restraint leaves ‘extra’ money in the pockets of families and entrepreneurs.
In other words, follow the Reagan model. Which brings me to my ‘soapbox moment’: The people that think Reaganism is dead don’t understand Reaganite conservatism. As my friend Cindy, aka the Lady Logician, points out in this post, prioritizing things drove Reagan’s agenda:
President Reagan is said to have taken the following position on legislation. He supposedly said that if the legislation did not make the country safer, more prosperous or more free then it was not worthy of his support. THAT is what Republicans should be focusing on!
Those guiding principles are still appealing today because they’re eternal principles. The sooner the GOP understands eternal principles, the faster we’ll return to majority party status.
Finally, it’s worth remembering that Sen. McCain’s appeal to independents was when Sarah Palin joined the ticket and appealed first to the base. Until your base is energized, you can’t play on the other guys’ side of the field.
Cross-posted at California Conservative