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RNC chair tells Salem crowd to focus on consistency, presidency

Published: Sat, April 5, 2014 @ 12:07 a.m.

By Joe Gorman



Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus says his party needs to be more consistent.

Specifically, Priebus said Friday before the Columbiana County Republican Party’s Lincoln Day Dinner at the Salem Community Center that it needs to do more than just win midterm elections.

The party also needs to win presidential elections, he said.

Priebus was the keynote speaker at the event, which also featured other prominent state Republicans such as Ohio Republican Party Chairman Matt Borges, U.S. Rep. Bill Johnson of Marietta and Ohio Supreme Court Justices Sharon Kennedy and Judith French.

Priebus said that though he thinks Republicans will do well in the upcoming midterm elections, especially in the Senate, they have to carry that momentum over into presidential elections. The party has lost the last two, both to President Barack Obama.

“We have to be a party that’s good at winning presidential elections,” Priebus said.

Priebus said one of his main goals in getting ready for the 2016 presidential election is improving the party’s use of electronic and social media in elections. He also said he wants to tone down the rhetoric among candidates in some of their primaries because sometimes a bruising interparty brawl can carry over into the fall against a Democratic opponent.

“We’re killing each other all over the place,” Priebus said.

Priebus said party members at the grass-roots level are important for the digital push he wants to make because they are the ones closest to voters and can gather their information to be used to recruit members and voters. He said he wants to bring back the “precinct captain” concept to local parties, where every precinct has a captain who will coordinate information gathering and get-out-the-vote efforts.

In the last two presidential elections, Obama has been able to carry Ohio, and both times it was close. Priebus said to swing the state into the GOP column in 2016, Republicans need to be active in the state for an entire year, not just the four months of the election cycle, and he also wants candidates to do a better job of connecting with minority voters in Ohio.

He also said a candidate who comes off as a “regular guy” could help.

And he had someone in mind.

“We need to put someone on the ballot that people want to have a beer with. People like [Gov.] John Kasich,” Priebus said.

In an email response to Priebus’ visit, Meredith Tucker, communications director for the Ohio Democratic Party, said Democrats already have a proven strategy in the state while Republicans are lacking in ways to reach out to Ohio voters. She also mocked him for predicting a Republican victory in the 2012 presidential election.

“We’re sure to hear a lot of bravado about the Republicans’ plans for a new ground game in Ohio,” Tucker said in her statement. “So while they start from scratch, we’re building on our successful, already proven get-out-the-vote strategy. Reince was wrong on Ohio then, and he’s wrong on Ohio now.”


1andersonathan(682 comments)posted 1 year, 6 months ago

Well when the "R's" can get on the same page and start making some sense then decide to follow through and make the changes that need changed, people might respond and OH can get back to a red state.

Secure our boarders. once and for all. And take a aggressive stance on immigration.

5 years and billions in dollars for Obama Care on a broken system tear the bill apart, scrap most, keep any good, billions and years wasted on this

Term Limits no more McCain's Palosi's Reid's

Push and pass The Fair Tax through.

Take a hard line on Islam We do not want it in any way and let the world know it. Stand with Israel. Dis own the Muslim Brotherhood

Complete voter registration ID for the country Obama Care needs one so we can use their guidelines to eliminate and racism on the ID part.

Limit the EPA power that is a cesspool of corruption.

Address the moral issues marriage abortion with a hard line not a wimpy red line.

Recognize the Tea Party as a "R's" best friend take in the the older voters who in reality just want America back And when we are called terrorist stand by our side because in the end you need us more than we need you because we will stay home and watch you go down in flames again and again. Until you take us seriously. So crunch your numbers from 2012 and poll the stay home R vote

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