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Ronna McDaniel Out At RNC After Trump Urges Her To Resign

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OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.


After a series of election cycles where Republicans either did not win key races or the party underperformed generally, Ronna McDaniel will leave as head of the Republican National Committee after former President Donald Trump urged her to do so last week.

The 50-year-old McDaniel said her resignation will become official on March 8, a day before the Super Tuesday primaries, the New York Post reported.

McDaniel’s announcement comes after weeks of speculation she could be ousted and about a week after Trump asked her to step down. She was also facing mounting criticism from Republican candidates and party members for the GOP’s poor election performances since 2018.

McDaniel, in a statement, said it had been “the honor and privilege of my life to serve the Republican National Committee for seven years as chairwoman to elect Republicans and grow our party.” Among her list of achievements, she said her proudest moment was “firing Nancy Pelosi” as House speaker.

“I have decided to step aside at our spring training on March 8 in Houston to allow our nominee to select a chair of their choosing,” she said. “The RNC has historically undergone change once we have a nominee and it has always been my intention to honor that tradition,” she added.

Trump personally selected McDaniel to head up the RNC. She is the niece of two-time Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney.

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The Post noted further:

But criticism ramped up over the past few years over her handling of the party’s finances and failed grassroots efforts to attract voters after Republicans lost Senate seats and governorships in 2022.

At the same time, the RNC had just $8 million in cash on hand as of Dec. 31 — the lowest since it had just over $5 million cash on hand at the end of 2014, according to Federal Election Commission filings.

In contrast, the Trump campaign finished off 2023 with $42 million cash on hand.

Trump hinted a week ago that McDaniel should probably step aside after the party posted a decade-low fundraising figure in a presidential election year.

“I think she knows that, I think she understands that,” Trump said during a Newsmax interview when he was asked if she should step down after three consecutive election cycles where Republicans underperformed.

Trump also suggested in a Truth Social post that he’ll be “making a decision the day after the South Carolina Primary as to my recommendations for RNC Growth,” calling McDaniel a “friend” and lauding her for her work in Michigan in 2016, where he defeated Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.

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He added that he believes “she did great when she ran Michigan for me” and “she did OK initially in the RNC.”

But, “I would say right now there’ll probably be some changes made,” he told Fox News earlier this month.

Trump will reportedly back North Carolina GOP Chairman Michael Whatley as a replacement for McDaniel. He has served as a general counsel for the RNC and has worked on and supported voter integrity laws.

In addition, Trump is expected to nominate daughter-in-law Lara Trump to become RNC co-chair, with “top campaign aide Chris LaCivita” to be “the party’s chief operating officer,” The Post reported.

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If she’s elected, Lara Trump has said that “every penny will go to making sure Donald Trump is the 47th president, to ensuring that we have great candidates, to expand our lead in the House and to take back the Senate.”

Over the weekend, Trump’s sole remaining significant primary challenger, Nikki Haley, said her choice to run the RNC “wouldn’t be a family member or a candidate.”

“I would hope that the people in the RNC know that they have the responsibility to put in people in the RNC who are going to look out in the best interest of all the Republican Party, not just one person,” she told ABC News.

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