It’s fair to say that Ronna Romney McDaniel has been “embattled” as the chairperson of the RNC for quite some time now. Some of us have been calling for her removal from office since 2018, when the GOP lost control of the House of Representatives for two years.
She has clung to power for years simply because Donald Trump is too nice and loyal to friends who deliver for him, even after they’ve lost a step. After last week’s reporting, however, on the financial malfeasance of McDaniel’s leadership, she’s stepping down soon. It’s about time!
The timing of last week’s report from RedState on the RNC’s financial misdeeds was intentional. The damning report was intended to damage McDaniel, right as the RNC was meeting for its winter meeting in Las Vegas on January 31st.
We did a deep dive into the numbers here and explained exactly why it proves that the RNC under McDaniel is throwing donor money down a hole and not trying to win elections. If you missed that report you can check it out here.
Over a 13-month period between late 2022 and 2023, the RNC spent far more money on limousine rides, floral arrangements, and office supplies than it did on voter list maintenance, Get Out the Vote (GOTV) drives, and state outlays for elections. The DNC massively outspent the RNC on election-winning categories, while the RNC is basically just partying with donor money.
The report was absolutely devastating for McDaniel. She walked around ranting and raving and making excuses at the winter meeting. She had her budget director try to make up excuses about how the RNC records expenditures differently than the DNC, and that her financial malfeasance wasn’t actually as big a deal as it looks. It didn’t work.
A few days after the winter meeting, she was summoned to Mar a Lago. After a brief meeting with President Trump, McDaniel announced that she will be stepping down after the South Carolina primary on February 24th. The RNC will have to hold an election to appoint a replacement.
Believe it or not, the RNC’s financials for 2022 were even worse than the ones last week, but she still managed to cling to power for another year. The 2024 election is simply too important, however, to keep someone dedicated to consistently losing on the job.
In 2022, the RNC spent millions of donor money on luxury resort accommodations, private jet flights, floral arrangements, home improvement and décor, entertainment, wardrobe, and spa and cosmetic treatments for McDaniel. The RNC spent more money on booze for its events than it gave to Kari Lake’s campaign for Governor of Arizona.
They even spent money on something called LGBTQ+ filings in 2022. I don’t know what that is, but I guarantee it didn’t drive a single Republican to the ballot box to vote for our candidates in 2022.
Trump issued one of his long missives on Truth Social Monday. In it, he briefly explained why he has been loyal to McDaniel all these years (his kindness really is a weakness sometimes), and it’s now time for a change:
“In my successful run in 2016, the State of Michigan really came through – First time in Decades it was won by a Republican, and it was headed up by my friend Ronna McDaniel,” wrote Trump. “Ronna is now head of the RNC, and I’ll be making a decision the day after the South Carolina Primary as to my recommendations for RNC growth.”
At this point we only have speculation as to who Trump will recommend for McDaniel’s replacement. Some are saying he’ll nominate Michael Whatley, the chair of the North Carolina Republican Party. That would be a good choice.
Unlike McDaniel, Whatley firmly believes that the 2020 election was stolen, and he won’t be quiet about it. He was a “Stop the Steal” guy from the beginning. Imagine the excuses that poor Fox News would have to use to keep the RNC chair off the air in a presidential election year if it’s Whatley?
Voter registration genius Scott Presler is another obvious choice and definitely a fan favorite on social media. Even if Presler isn’t in the running, it would be great if the RNC would finally offer him some assistance. Mike Lindell might still want the job too. No matter who Trump nominates, it’s hard to envision them doing a worse job than Ronna Romney McDaniel.