While running for his post in November, New Mexico GOP Chairman John Billingsley, who served as vice chairman last cycle, criticized the party’s focus on a multimillion-dollar media campaign in lieu of a well-financed grass-roots campaign. Obama scored another double-digit win in the state, and the GOP lost its bid to pick up an open Senate seat and failed to compete in the state’s most competitive House district.
“As a longtime conservative and Republican activist, I believe our party must return to the lead role in grass-roots candidate recruitment, messaging and fundraising,” Billingsley wrote in an op-ed in the Albuquerque Journal. “For too long, the party has adopted a top-down approach when it comes to communicating our message and values to voters.”
Priebus is expected to push RNC members on Friday to cease viewing the political landscape as a series of battleground states and rather build the party into a national brand that can compete in the states that have slipped off the national radar.
“Just three presidents ago, in ’88, Republicans won easily in places like California, Illinois, Connecticut and Delaware,” Priebus is expected to say. “If we make the commitment, we can win again.”
Following the speeches from elected officials, the crowd stands at long tables as they dig into BBQ, brunswick stew, cadillac rice at the Law Enforcement Cookout at Wayne Dasher's pond house in Glennville, Ga., on Thursday, April 17, 2014.