First, from Breitbart.com.
The report proposes shortening the primary calendar for the next presidential cycle and holding a series of regional primaries that would be a series of "super primaries." Critics claim it is heavy on process, metrics, and outreach to celebrities and minorities while being short on conservative substance—which, they fear, would ensure more Mitt Romneys are nominated over insurgent Tea Party and grassroots candidates like Ted Cruz.
Brent Bozell, chairman of ForAmerica, said there was not much that excited him about the report and accused the Republican establishment of being "obsessed with identifying problems and solutions from the top-down instead of from the bottom-up."
"It's the exact same thing as (GOP strategist) Karl Rove saying they're going to pick candidates. That ensures that establishment candidates are the only ones with a chance," Bozell told The Hill.
Jenny Beth Martin of Tea Party Patriots said the RNC fails to understand that Republicans lost because they "failed to promote our principles," and the party does not need to wait on the "RNC to promote our winning principles at places like CPAC, and across the country."
Iowa GOP Chair A.J. Spiker told Politico that the report was an "really an attempt to get rid of what the base of the party wants" and the RNC membership would "object" to that. John Brabender, who had been Rick Santorum's chief strategist, said he was "troubled" by a system that would "undoubtedly give an advantage to establishment backed candidates and the wealthiest candidates."
Greg Mueller, formerly a chief adviser to Pat Buchanan, who carried on a 1992 primary challenge of sitting president George H.W. Bush, told Politico the new rules seemed like "a system of the establishment, by the establishment, and for the establishment."
David Bossie, president of the non-profit group Citizens United, said the report was "not a good thing for the party and I definitely don’t think it’s a good thing for the conservative movement."
Bozell worried the new proposals would nominate more losers—moderates like Bob Dole, John McCain, or Mitt Romney—rather than Republican candidates who run on a conservative message like Ronald Reagan.This is key, and is reminds me of what happened at the GOP convention when an effort was made successfully (and against the popular opinion) to push out grassroots activists. I often wondered how much effect that had in souring potential voters on Romney. Potential voters meaning they could have voted in November, but stayed hone or voted for someone like Gary Johnson, because the GOP essentially told the grassroots they only wanted was their vote, not their input.
Then, I read what Anne Sorock wrote at Legal Insurrection about African-American "outreach." She and I met at BlogBash last Thursday and discussed the candidacy of Paul McKinley in Jesse Jackson Jr.'s vacated seat which she has been covering. McKinley has made in-roads in the black community in Chicago, being associated with "the Broke Party," that has highlighted the broken promises of the infamous, corrupt Democrat machine in Chicago towards the black community. Despite McKinley's successful inroads into this community, the GOP has (to their stupidity) all but ignored his campaign.
These findings and recommendations (in the GOP report) strike me as shallow: more bureaucracy in the form of hires and programs, girded by platitudes that essentially say, “they really belong with us so let’s hire some of them and support them in running for office.” Not exactly groundbreaking stuff.
We at LI know what’s groundbreaking: not a superficial hire at the RNC but a candidate like Paul McKinley who’s carrying the load of the tired Republican brand into his community and rejuvenating it. His complete non-support, and in the case of the Illinois GOP, downright abandonment, by the Republican powers-that-be is worth studying more than this entire report’s “findings” on African American outreach.
Wake up, RNC. There’s a revolution going on and your brand isn’t going to stick around with recommendations like “hire some of the minorities.” This ought to be a party about ideas, ideas that you seem to have forgotten are more important than embracing the left’s separation of our American populace into demographic interest groups. You don’t need focus groups, you need a complete cleaning of house.Her colleague at LI and the blog's founder, Prof. William Jacobson, highlights another deficiency in the report. Not once does it mention bloggers in its 100 pages. Compare that with how Democrats reach to out liberal bloggers and far-Left activist groups. That is a problem. I recall last year, when the Romney bus showed up at Obama's appearance at Centreville High School, I went on board and spoke to one of the PR people and gave them my card. Not once did the Romney campaign send e-mails or do any kind of blogger outreach that I'm aware of. The McLame Campaign in 2008 was worse.
If the GOP wants a new way forward, let me make one suggestion that won't cost them a dime to research. It was made at CPAC in 1977 by someone who (with two huge landslide victories) showed the party that conservatism was, and is, a winning message.
The New Republican Party I envision will not be, and cannot, be one limited to the country club-big business image that, for reasons both fair and unfair, it is burdened with today. The New Republican Party I am speaking about is going to have room for the man and the woman in the factories, for the farmer, for the cop on the beat and the millions of Americans who may never have thought of joining our party before, but whose interests coincide with those represented by principled Republicanism. If we are to attract more working men and women of this country, we will do so not by simply "making room" for them, but by making certain they have a say in what goes on in the party. The Democratic Party turned its back on the majority of social conservatives during the 1960s. The New Republican Party of the late ’70s and ’80s must welcome them, seek them out, enlist them, not only as rank-and-file members but as leaders and as candidates.
The time has come for Republicans to say to black voters: "Look, we offer principles that black Americans can, and do, support." We believe in jobs, real jobs; we believe in education that is really education; we believe in treating all Americans as individuals and not as stereotypes or voting blocs -- and we believe that the long-range interest of black Americans lies in looking at what each major party has to offer, and then deciding on the merits. The Democratic Party takes the black vote for granted. Well, it’s time black America and the New Republican Party move toward each other and create a situation in which no black vote can be taken for granted.
The New Republican Party I envision is one that will energetically seek out the best candidates for every elective office, candidates who not only agree with, but understand, and are willing to fight for a sound, honest economy, for the interests of American families and neighborhoods and communities and a strong national defense. And these candidates must be able to communicate those principles to the American people in language they understand. Inflation isn’t a textbook problem. Unemployment isn’t a textbook problem. They should be discussed in human terms.
Our candidates must be willing to communicate with every level of society, because the principles we espouse are universal and cut across traditional lines. In every Congressional district there should be a search made for young men and women who share these principles and they should be brought into positions of leadership in the local Republican Party groups. We can find attractive, articulate candidates if we look, and when we find them, we will begin to change the sorry state of affairs that has led to a Democratic-controlled Congress for more than 40 years. I need not remind you that you can have the soundest principles in the world, but if you don't have candidates who can communicate those principles, candidates who are articulate as well as principled, you are going to lose election after election. I refuse to believe that the good Lord divided this world into Republicans who defend basic values and Democrats who win elections. We have to find tough, bright young men and women who are sick and tired of cliches and the pomposity and the mind-numbing economic idiocy of the liberals in Washington.All that above did not come from some Karl Rove, high-paid consultant type. It came from being close to the grassroots and the activists. If we had people leading the GOP who wanted to win, instead of those who oversaw a losing Presidential election, those steps would be taken.