Multiple Republican sources said that a number of prominent GOP strategists and operatives are trying to persuade the RNC’s leadership to end the party’s monopoly of the list by creating an arrangement whereby a new, non-party group could have access to the list in exchange for improving it.
Among those Republicans said to be pushing for the move are former Republican National Committee Chairman Mike Duncan, former White House Political Director Karl Rove and Barry Jackson, a top aide to Speaker John Boehner (Ohio).
Duncan, who is chairman of the board of American Crossroads, one of the non-party groups credited with helping Republicans win the House last year, adamantly opposed the move when he chaired the RNC but now favors it. Rove is also heavily involved in American Crossroads.
Numerous former RNC staffers described the voter file as the committee’s “greatest asset” and argued that by giving up control of the file, which the RNC shares with state parties, the committee would be agreeing to diminish its power dramatically.
Others downplayed the risk, arguing that the RNC must never and will never “give up the list” but can allow private entities access to it. The more the list is used, they argued, the more it would be “refreshed.” And, they added, only the parties can pay for federal get-out-the-vote efforts, thereby guaranteeing the RNC an important role in campaigns.
Tuesday, March 29, 2011
American Crossroads and The List
At Roll Call, Stuart Rothenberg reports on discussions about the RNC's extensive voter files: