Potential candidates for chairman of the Republican National Committee will take questions at a panel discussion in Washington on Wednesday afternoon, and they'll be ranked on their humility, fairness and managerial skills, among other things.
The Republican National Conservative Caucus, a group of 26 RNC members, is organizing the panel, along with FreedomWorks, the group founded by former House Majority Leader Dick Armey (R-Texas).
Former RNC Political Director Gentry Collins, former RNC Co-Chairwoman Ann Wagner, Connecticut Republican Party Chairman Chris Healy, former Michigan Republican Party Chairman Saul Anuzis and Maria Cino, the CEO of the 2008 Republican National Convention, have confirmed they’ll participate in the panel, said caucus Chairman James Bopp Jr., a committeeman from Indiana.
RNC Chairman Michael Steele, who has not formally announced his re-election bid, had not said whether he would participate.
Bopp said the panel will use 13 leadership criteria, which focus not on policy but on management ability. For example, the caucus said it seeks a visionary who can raise money, represent the party publicly as a good spokesperson and empower RNC members. The first criterion on the list is “a positive attitude and vision for the growth and success of the Republican Party with practical ideas to achieve their goals.”
The other criteria are laid out below and include a handy ranking system.
Here are the “13 Leadership Criteria for RNC Chairman Candidates,” as outlined by the conservative caucus hosting the panel:
"A Candidate for the position of RNC Chair should have:
1. A positive attitude and vision for the growth and success of the Republican Party with
practical ideas to achieve their goals; including using the mechanism of the 2012
Republican National Convention, and focusing the executive office of the RNC to promote
our mission, our message, and our candidates. (Vision)
2. Appreciation and support for the solid base branches of social, fiscal and foreign policy
conservatives in the Republican Party; and actively work with the Tea Party activist that
with this base make up the freedom movement in this country. (Promote Unity)
3. A thorough comprehension of and solid support for the conservative principles expressed
in the Party Platform. (Support Platform)
4. The highest ethical standard of behavior in the Judeo-Christian tradition as demonstrated
by reputation both private and public. (Integrity)
5. Such a trustworthy character and winsome personality that he/she is capable of winning
the confidence of donors to use their money wisely. (Fundraising ability)
6. A high level of management and organizational experience preferably but not limited to
successful private sector business. (Managerial ability)
7. Skills and professional presence to articulate the Republican message accurately, clearly
and persuasively without superseding it with divergent personal views. (Good
8. Respect for the primary process and will not promote or support or be linked to any
presidential candidate prior to the nomination. (Fair-minded)
9. Limits on personal ambitions while serving the RNC and its members along with the
humility to work to achieve the goals of the Party regardless of who gets the credit.
10. The physical stamina, intellectual ability, and spiritual maturity to withstand the pressures
of the position without being corrupted. (Well-balanced)
11. Respect for the autonomy of the states and respect for their committee members and
chairs as partners in the political process to be encouraged and empowered for success.
12. A finely tuned understanding of the political process that positions him/her to stay above
and ahead of the competition in terms of cutting edge strategy, long range planning, and
ability to be flexible in the face of rapidly changing realities. (Political savvy)
13. The respect of the various leadership members of the Republican Party, including
Republican Congressional leaders and Republican Governors, to secure a seat at the table
when high level discussion takes place. (Respect)
"Scoring System- Matching words with deeds and records
"3 points-excellent ability
2 points-fulfills requirement
1 point-weakly fulfills requirement
-1 point-does not meet requirement"
The panel will be held from 2 to 4 p.m at the Washington Hilton. The event is open to the public but limited to the first 200 people who reserve space. It will be streamed live online here.
On Thursday, members of the Republican National Conservative Caucus and of the larger RNC Conservative Steering Committee will have a chance to interview prospective chairmen privately.
Bopp said there are some who have committed to take part in private discussions Thursday but have not committed to participating in the public panel Wednesday.
Pete Ricketts, an RNC committeeman from Nebraska and a member of the caucus, said he would attend the panel Wednesday. He said he’s trying to keep an open mind about who to support for chairman.
“I would say that I’m not likely to support Chairman Steele, but I wouldn’t rule it out,” he told Roll Call on Monday. “I think one of the big things we need to do is improve our big donor program.”
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