GOP grapples with divisions, de-Romneyization as RNC meets in Charlotte
On one end of the spectrum are those who stress the GOP’s failure to appeal to Hispanics and other minorities, arguing that the party must make fundamental changes to broaden its appeal. On the other end are those who stress the GOP’s failure to master even the basics of voter turnout in the last election, along with the flawed candidacy of Mitt Romney, arguing that the party does not need to change its principles or message so much as learn the turnout and messaging techniques used so successfully by the competition. …
The bottom line is that RNC members know something is terribly wrong. Some point out that chairman Reince Priebus — who is expected to be re-elected in an uncontested ballot Friday — cannot come before the committee and say, “We were out-spent” or “We couldn’t match the resources of the other side.” The party’s problem is more fundamental than that — simply put, Republicans have either a basic identity problem or an equally basic competence problem — and demands more fundamental answers.
Members will also discuss the degree to which the 2012 presidential failure was the fault of the Romney campaign, or whether the RNC shared some significant portion of that blame as well. Some Republicans believe the RNC ceded too much control of the party’s message to the Romney campaign, which was happy to run the show in the confidence that Romney would soon be elected president. The result was catastrophic. There will be some members urging the party not to give itself over so completely to a presidential campaign in the future.