RNC back in black in 2012

posted at 12:50 pm on February 16, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

It’s been a year since the RNC had to clean house in the midst of a fiscal collapse, installing Reince Priebus as chair and attempting to address a mountain of debt.  One year later, the deficit has disappeared, and the RNC now has a war chest of $7 million in cash for the 2012 fight:

When GOP kingmakers elected Reince Priebus chairman of the Republican National Committee (RNC), they had one thing on their mind.

One year later, Priebus has shown them what they wanted to see: money. And lots of it.

Republicans enjoyed a historic election in November 2010, but when Priebus took over a couple of months later, the RNC was $23 million in debt. Many donors had stopped giving to the RNC, which had been tarnished by various high-profile controversies.

Priebus has brought them back, wiping out the RNC’s debt.

The RNC has $20 million in cash against $13 million in outstanding debt for a $7 million balance, a $30-million turnaround in a single year.  In fact, the Priebus-led RNC now has a million-dollar edge on its rival DNC, which has $12.5 million in cash and $6.5 million in debt.  That’s not just impressive, it’s close to miraculous after the mess Priebus inherited.

How has he accomplished this?  Mainly, he’s kept his head down and stuck to fundraising and organizing.  He doesn’t make nearly as many public appearances and media hits as his predecessor Michael Steele, who kept a high profile but often stumbled into controversy by doing so.  Priebus also has kept a tight rein on RNC spending in order to keep debt from piling up and creating an obstacle for the GOP.  As a result, former RNC chairs Haley Barbour and Ed Gillespie credit Priebus with “restor[ing] faith at the RNC among donors and activists,” which is always Job One for major-party chairs.

What does that mean for the upcoming election?  In 2010, the financial and organizing woes of the RNC hurt the final GOTV push in the midterm elections, perhaps costing the GOP a couple of Congressional pickups in an otherwise excellent year — the credit for which went to outside groups that did the fundraising and organizing that the RNC couldn’t.  Now that the party finds itself back in the black and leading its rival — despite Barack Obama’s prodigious fundraising over the last few months — Republicans at least have a shot at out-organizing Democrats on the ground in November.


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Suggestion – spend it on getting conservatives elected.

DanMan on February 16, 2012 at 12:53 PM

RNC back in black

racist!

faraway on February 16, 2012 at 12:55 PM

Republicans at least have a shot at out-organizing Democrats on the ground in November.

Seriously doubt that’s going to happen. A one or two point swing from at least having a ground presence could be decisive though.

LukeinNE on February 16, 2012 at 12:55 PM

Maybe he should be running for president.

meci on February 16, 2012 at 12:56 PM

As a result, former RNC chairs Haley Barbour and Ed Gillespie credit Priebus with “restor[ing] faith at the RNC among donors and activists,” which is always Job One for major-party chairs.

Don’t piss that money and goodwill away by trying to prop up the party’s hand-picked candidates in contested primaries.

teke184 on February 16, 2012 at 12:57 PM

Suggestion – spend it on getting conservatives elected.

DanMan on February 16, 2012 at 12:53 PM

But be prepared for reality.

heshtesh on February 16, 2012 at 12:57 PM

Priebus has actually done well. Good decision to give him the helm.

amerpundit on February 16, 2012 at 12:57 PM

Suggestion – spend it on getting conservatives elected.

roflmao

kunegetikos on February 16, 2012 at 12:58 PM

Suggestion – spend it on getting conservatives elected.

DanMan on February 16, 2012 at 12:53 PM

I’ve had no faith in the RNC but I’ll keep an open mind with Prebius running things.

As Wisconsin chair, he helped with Scott Walker’s career and was responsible for getting Ron Johnson to run against Russ Feingold.

The guy is no nonsense. I like it.

WisRich on February 16, 2012 at 12:58 PM

Don’t piss that money and goodwill away by trying to prop up the party’s hand-picked candidates in contested primaries.

teke184 on February 16, 2012 at 12:57 PM

That ….

conservative tarheel on February 16, 2012 at 1:00 PM

This guy was a great choice. He’s been a great RNC chair.

gophergirl on February 16, 2012 at 1:01 PM

Maybe he should be running for president.

meci on February 16, 2012 at 12:56 PM

The guy is born for the job! Strike the vowels from his name, and you’ll get his exact job description: RNC PR BS.

Archivarix on February 16, 2012 at 1:02 PM

The gop leadership stinks (and I’m being charitable).

They are a bunch of big gov loving, self-castrated Progressives that live for invites to the Hamptons and praise from WAPO and the NYTimes. They also are willing to sacrifice individual liberty for the sake of “accomodation” of President Palpatine.

UGGGGGHHHHHH to the once Reagan bold colored gop.

It died when when Pastel Bush 41 took over in 1989.

PappyD61 on February 16, 2012 at 1:03 PM

Who cares about the RNC?

I’m not giving them a single damn red cent.

Aizen on February 16, 2012 at 1:04 PM

I’ve had no faith in the RNC but I’ll keep an open mind with Prebius running things.

As Wisconsin chair, he helped with Scott Walker’s career and was responsible for getting Ron Johnson to run against Russ Feingold.

The guy is no nonsense. I like it.

WisRich on February 16, 2012 at 12:58 PM

Can we change the RNC to the Reince National Committee? Seems like it would be an upgrade.

WhatNot on February 16, 2012 at 1:06 PM

Priebus is a Godsend. He worked miracles in Wisconsin and seems to be doing the same on a national level. Here’s hoping we keep him around for a long time.

Caiwyn on February 16, 2012 at 1:06 PM

Well done.

Smooth Rooster on February 16, 2012 at 1:06 PM

I still won’t send them a dime, I’ll continue to donate directly to conservative candidates I like…

OmahaConservative on February 16, 2012 at 1:07 PM

Who cares about the RNC?

I’m not giving them a single damn red cent.

Aizen on February 16, 2012 at 1:04 PM

I actually sent them some after they threw out that disgusting creep Steele. Good Sane acts should be encouraged. After that, not so much. Internet was created to donate directly, wasn’t it?

Archivarix on February 16, 2012 at 1:07 PM

racist!

faraway on February 16, 2012 at 12:55 PM

I know! It’s like they don’t realize Michael Steele is black! :mrgreen:

SouthernGent on February 16, 2012 at 1:09 PM

What up, America?

Dack Thrombosis on February 16, 2012 at 1:13 PM

I actually sent them some after they threw out that disgusting creep Steele. Good Sane acts should be encouraged. After that, not so much. Internet was created to donate directly, wasn’t it?

Archivarix on February 16, 2012 at 1:07 PM

I agree on Steele being a creep, but I’m still not giving them a dime while they keep supporting moderate and liberal Republicans.

Aizen on February 16, 2012 at 1:15 PM

They should rename the RNC, the RoveGillespieBarbour committee. This guy is a front for the sqishy bushie’s. In the last two elections they have given us Mccain & romneycare.

They may have money from corporate fatcat donors who feed off of government money but they don’t have the grassroots. case in point, look at the horrid turnout numbers.

Danielvito on February 16, 2012 at 1:16 PM


Suggestion – spend it on getting conservatives elected. to run
DanMan on February 16, 2012 at 12:53 PM

FIFY

Natebo on February 16, 2012 at 1:21 PM

i got to hear Reince speak at a local GOP fundraiser shortly after he was elected. I know some big time conservatives were hoping for someone else to win so I wasn’t particularly thrilled to see him win. I did enjoy hearing him speak. I like how he is very controlled, but not a push-over in interviews. I am glad they made some money, but I don’t know enough to comment on what else he has been able to do.

earlgrey133 on February 16, 2012 at 1:24 PM

Never another dime to the RINO National Commitee.

After the McCain debacle…..I contribute directly to candidates.

The RNC and its establishment horsesh!t can kiss my hairy conservative @ss.

Tim_CA on February 16, 2012 at 1:25 PM

The RNC has been/is invisible. How about promoting the Nations values/Americanism as a choice… in the coming elections… Do something so I can see value there and write another check. Earn the money!

BobScuba on February 16, 2012 at 1:28 PM

To add to our money woes, the criminals at ACORN still around, doing their criminal work with our tax money: Don’t Look Now But ACORN Is Alive & Well & Ready to Muck Up the 2012 Elections

slickwillie2001 on February 16, 2012 at 1:30 PM

Debbie Whatasluts will go threw her balance quickly buying all that perm solution and stuff..

hillsoftx on February 16, 2012 at 1:38 PM

Maybe, but when Michael Steele was there we were winning, what we are looking at now is a massive disaster with the presidency and major losses in the House and giving up a great opportunity to take the Senate. If it was my decision, the whole Republican National Committee would be fired

georgealbert on February 16, 2012 at 1:43 PM

To add to our money woes, the criminals at ACORN still around, doing their criminal work with our tax money: Don’t Look Now But ACORN Is Alive & Well & Ready to Muck Up the 2012 Elections

slickwillie2001 on February 16, 2012 at 1:30 PM

lol….think New-Black-Panthers with batons!

Hey, at least they don’t intimidate “dead” obama voters, or cartoon characters!

Tim_CA on February 16, 2012 at 1:44 PM

Anyone with the judgment this this RNC crew is doing a good job is really just not being observant. We are getting killed by the Dems and their PR machines

georgealbert on February 16, 2012 at 1:44 PM

Priebus also has kept a tight rein on RNC spending in order to keep debt from piling up and creating an obstacle for the GOP.

That’s ridiculous! If liberals have taught me anything these past few years, it’s that the best way to get out of debt is to increase spending…especially the frivolous kind.

BlueCollarAstronaut on February 16, 2012 at 1:45 PM

The money is just one small part of the equation but KUDOS to Preibus for turning around the mess Michael Steele left him.

What’s really going to matter is the message in 2012. The RNC, along with the RGA and other party-affiliated groups (read – NOT PACs/SuperPACs) will need to craft a positive message and vision for the country to rally behind. They need to take the best conservatism has to offer and craft it into a simple and effective messaging strategy. The Dems have theirs, ie, class-warfare, zero-sum mentality on the economy (“I lose because someone else’s success is at fault”) and soaking the rich.

Sadly, the GOP SUCKS at messaging and typically nominates people that can’t articulate the written slogan on a cereal box let alone a coherent vision of what makes America great…

powerpickle on February 16, 2012 at 1:50 PM

Credit where credit is due – but like others here, I say let’s see if they now work on electing conservatives & not RINOs/DIABLOs.

Conservatives got elected in 2009 & 2010 because of other factors completely apart from the RNC.

22044 on February 16, 2012 at 2:47 PM

RNC Chair was behind all the debates with liberal moderators and did everything they could to support Romney.

Not seeing one dime out of me until they change the way the Chair is elected since they have to be a member of the elite RNC.

PhiKapMom on February 16, 2012 at 3:42 PM

This is good news..Thank you Mr. Priebus..:)

Dire Straits on February 16, 2012 at 3:57 PM

Meh, and just what do the folks get for their buck-fifty? More gladhanding with a wink and a nod?

Limerick on February 16, 2012 at 4:06 PM

My money goes to DeMint’s Senate Conservative Fund and Paul Ryan’s Prosperity PAC. Never, ever a dime to RNC.

jb34461 on February 16, 2012 at 4:58 PM

Priebus is apparently good at staying out of the media spotlight (less chance for them to demonize him) and bringing in money for the campaign. Now let’s see if he can spend it wisely, for the maximum impact (winning the White House and the Senate).

As others have commented here, he should stay out of primaries, and let Republican voters pick their own candidates, but also try to avoid nominating sure-losers like Christine O’Donnell and Sharron Angle.

Steve Z on February 16, 2012 at 5:33 PM

I donate to the candidate, instead of the RNC…since Dole.
Mr. P is a very good man…his last name has to be changed though…it sounds like some ‘private’ part or something!

KOOLAID2 on February 16, 2012 at 5:47 PM