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Entries in Republican Party (24)

Tuesday
May282013

Republican Party Names New Hispanic Outreach Director

Comstock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- The Republican National Committee is tapping veteran GOP strategist Jennifer Sevilla Korn to lead the party's effort to become competitive again with Latino voters, it announced Tuesday.

Korn will hold the titles Deputy Political Director and National Field Director for Hispanic Initiatives. Her selection comes as the GOP is looking for ways to rebuild its credibility with Latino voters after taking a shellacking in the 2012 presidential election, when President Obama won over seven in ten Latino votes.

RNC Chairman Reince Priebus said in a statement that Korn "will play a key role in directing our Hispanic engagement efforts to ensure that Republicans are building new relationships in the Hispanic community."

The GOP's failure to attract more non-white voters has become more magnified as the nation's electorate grows more racially and ethnically diverse. The RNC commissioned a 97-page post-election autopsy report this year, which acknowledged that the party has alienated some of the fastest-growing voter groups in the country: African-Americans, Hispanics and Asian-Americans. The party has launched a project to spend $10 million on outreach to these voters.

That report called on the party to change its perception among Latino voters, in part by changing its hardline approach to immigration policy.

"We are not a policy committee, but among the steps Republicans take in the Hispanic community and beyond, we must embrace and champion comprehensive immigration reform," says the report. "If we do not, our party's appeal will continue to shrink to its core constituencies only."

Korn served as Hispanic vote director on George W. Bush's 2004 reelection campaign, the last Republican presidential bid that attracted enough Latino voters, 40 percent, to win an election.

She also worked in the Bush White House as Director of Hispanic and Women's Affairs. During the 2012 election, Korn worked as Executive Director of the Hispanic Leadership Network, an offshoot of the center-right political group American Action Network.

"We have been successful in the past, and I know we can be successful in the future," Korn said in a statement. "I intend to work arduously to reach new heights in growing the Republican Party."

The RNC's last Hispanic outreach director, Bettina Inclán, now works at the National Republican Congressional Committee.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Saturday
Mar232013

Biden: 'No Leadership' in GOP

Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Vice President Joe Biden said Saturday that the Republican Party is struggling with an identity crisis, with “no leadership” and “the tail wagging the dog.”

“There is no leadership,” he told donors for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee at the St. Regis Hotel in New York City, according to the pool report. “There is nobody you can sit across the table from and shake hands, make a deal with."

“The problem is we have the tail wagging the dog in the Republican Party,” he added.

Biden led negotiations with Republican leaders in Congress in what resulted in the fiscal cliff deal earlier this year. While he did not cite the specific negotiations, the vice president said that in at least five instances, House Republicans took back an offer they had agreed to, calling Biden to say, “What we agreed to Joe, we can’t do.”

“The reason this is so dysfunctional now — with whom do you make a deal? With whom do you speak to get something done?” he said.

But Biden had kind words for one Republican senator, Rand Paul, calling him “a fine man, he’s a decent man.” When talking about Rep. Paul Ryan, his former opponent in 2012, the vice president got laughs from the crowd, saying “The Ryan budget is absolutely — the Ryan budget.”

The vice president thanked the crowd of 250 people at the DCCC conference for supporting him and other Democratic candidates in recent years.

“When I first ran, you just hoped that I’d turn out the right way,” he joked, adding that “some of you may still not be [convinced].”

And the vice president made light of his now infamous moment where a hot mic caught him calling President Obama’s healthcare plan a “big f***ing deal.”

“Thank God my mom’s not alive – can’t trust those microphones,” he joked.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Sunday
Sep092012

Joe Biden Calls GOP a 'Different Breed of Cat'

ABC News(PORTSMOUTH, Ohio) – Vice President Joe Biden often proclaims how different the Republican Party is from generations ago, but in Portsmouth, Ohio, Sunday, he had a new way to describe them – a “different breed of cat.”

“They’re not bad guys. It’s just a different, as my brother would say, different breed of cat,” Biden said at Portsmouth High School.

In nearly every speech, Biden cites the transformation of the GOP with Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan now at the helm of the party, telling audiences, “This is not your father’s Republican Party.”

Biden, whose son Beau is an Iraq war veteran, stressed the importance of acknowledging the sacrifices and contributions made by U.S. troops, a talking point he’s focused on since Romney failed to mention Afghanistan in his convention speech in August.

“Folks, folks, let me ask you: How many of you, like me, had a son or a daughter who went to Iraq or Afghanistan? How many of you have a brother or sister. How many of you know somebody who’s gone? You all know, you all know, we owe these young women and men an incredible debt to them, we owe those families an incredible debt,” he said.

“Those of you who have people deployed, you know — five, ten times a day, it just flashes through your mind. Folks we owe so much,” Biden later added. “This is going to go down, when we record this 9/11 generation, as the second greatest generation in the history of this country.”

On NBC’s Meet the Press Sunday, Romney continued to defend his omission of Afghanistan from his speech at the Republican National Convention, saying that policy is more important than words.

“I have some differences on policy with the president. I happen to think those are more important than what word I mention in each speech,” Romney said.

A crowd of 700 gathered at the local high school to listen to Biden, who has campaigned in the state over the weekend and will return to the state Wednesday. The vice president expressed his comfort level campaigning in an area similar to where he grew up in Pennsylvania.

“If you know northeast Pennsylvania, you’ll not be surprised. It’s not a whole lot different than southern Ohio, or actually a lot of parts of Ohio,” Biden said. “I feel really comfortable here. I’ve been here a lot. I plan on coming back a lot.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Monday
Jun042012

Santorum Expected to Announce Future Plans on Friday

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(VERONA, Pa.) -- Rick Santorum sent a teasing tweet on Monday that offered few details: “@RickSantorum: I have a big announcement coming on Friday! Stay tuned!”

Longtime Santorum adviser John Brabender tells ABC News Santorum will announce what he’s doing next after his failed presidential bid, but he wouldn’t reveal much more. The former presidential candidate has written in fundraising emails to supporters that he will let them know what’s next for him as soon as he is able to retire his campaign debt. After the last reporting period, the Santorum campaign owed $2.2 million.

Brabender said Santorum will not announce that he’s running for another elective office.

Two other insiders familiar with Santorum’s thinking said the announcement could have more to do with the issues that Santorum plans to pursue through his political action committee.

Last month Santorum’s super PAC, the Red, White, and Blue Fund, became a hybrid political action committee that will also work as a traditional leadership PAC to push Santorum’s message, support his political travel, cover administration costs and donate money to candidates he supports with similar views. No matter what the announcement, it’s likely this newly formed organization will be running the operation.

Could Santorum announce he’s campaigning with his former rival, Mitt Romney? During their May meeting the two did discuss it and Brabender said at the time “exciting the base” was an issue that came up.

“They both have different states they won, different targets,” Brabender said on May 4th, referring to the different parts of the party from which the two got support. “I think it was more how can we combine what we both learned to make sure we win in the fall. Clearly Rick Santorum is a champion in the social conservative realm, with blue collar Republicans, and he wants to keep that energy going in the fall.”

On Monday, Brabender said it was too early to tell where and if they would be campaigning together, saying there is “nothing scheduled” and the Romney campaign has put in “no official request” for Santorum to rally supporters on Romney’s behalf. Brabender did say the campaign asked Santorum to make videos for state conventions calling on supporters to “unite behind Romney,” which he did.

Friday will be a busy day for the former Pennsylvania senator. He is also headlining a fundraiser in Dallas for the Tea Party candidate in the Texas Senate race, Ted Cruz.

Two weeks ago Santorum backed Cruz, who is now in a runoff race with Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst. Dewhurst, who is backed by Texas Gov. Rick Perry, did not get 50 percent of the vote on May 29, ensuring a Cruz-Dewhurst face-off on July 31.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Jan312012

The Super PACs Report: Romney’s Group Dominates

ABC(TAMPA, Fla.) -- Mitt Romney isn’t just beating his rivals in the number of delegates he needs to win the nomination. He’s also creaming them in the financial support the candidates have from the so-called super PACs.

Hours before the deadline to report their financial standings, the super PACs supporting every candidate detailed how much money they raised in 2011 and how much they spent.

The PAC supporting Romney, Restore Our Future, raised almost $18 million between July and December, and as of Tuesday had spent more than $17 million. The PACs’ filings that were reported Tuesday night don’t reflect any money raised in January, whereas the amount spent is current up to 24 hours.

At the end of the reporting period, Restore Our Future had more than $23 million cash on hand.

The group supporting Romney’s main Republican rival, Newt Gingrich, reported raising just over $2 million, though that doesn’t include a $10 million donation in January from Sheldon Adelson, a Las Vegas casino tycoon, and his wife. That super PAC, Winning Our Future, has so far spent almost $9 million.

Winning Our Future was created in the middle of December, and the $2 million it reported raising came in just more than two weeks.

Super PACs can raise and spend unlimited amounts of money, and they don’t have to disclose their donors until the filing period every three months. Donations to candidates, on the other hand, are limited.

The other Republican candidates still in the race aren’t getting as much support from their super PACs. Ron Paul’s main super PAC, Endorse Liberty, raised just over $1 million last year, though it has spent more than $3 million, meaning it got millions of dollars in contributions in January that won’t be reported for another three months.

And Rick Santorum’s super PAC — Red, White & Blue — raised $729,000 last year and has spent almost $2 million.

The other super PAC to watch is President Obama’s. Priorities USA Action, which was started by two former White House aides, raised more than $4 million last year. It’s spent just more than $300,000 so far.

The PAC’s strength isn’t what Democrats expected it to be when the two aides, Bill Burton and Sean Sweeney, left the administration to form it. The super PAC also represented a hint of hypocrisy to critics, as Obama has repeatedly claimed that he doesn’t accept outside money for his campaign, which is what a super PAC does.

Burton told ABC News that the super PAC’s figures “won’t be anywhere near what the Romney super PAC and Crossroads put on the board,” referring to American Crossroads, a “527″ group that acts like a super PAC and is the brainchild of Republican Party gurus Karl Rove and Ed Gillespie.

2011 “was a year of organization and establishing ourselves,” Burton said, while 2012 “is about being the countervailing force to Karl Rove and Mitt Romney’s friends on Wall Street.”

Obama himself, meanwhile, has demonstrated that he can still raise enormous amounts of cash for his campaign. In the last quarter of 2011, he raised almost $40 million, and the president, the first lady and Vice President Biden were expected to raise more than $5 million on Tuesday alone at a smattering of fundraisers.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Nov022011

Poll: Democratic, Republican Parties Struggling for Popularity

Comstock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Favorable views of the Democratic Party have fallen to their lowest since the Reagan landslide of 1984.  Even fewer Americans see the Republican Party positively, and Americans by a 2-1 ratio say they’d welcome an independent alternative for president.

Sixty-one percent of people surveyed in the latest ABC News/Washington Post poll respond positively to the idea of an independent running for president against the two major-party nominees, while 32 percent say no thanks.

The results of the poll, produced for ABC News by Langer Research Associates, underscore the level of interest in alternatives, and the extent to which the two main parties are struggling for popularity a year from the 2012 election.  The public now divides 48 percent to 46 percent in favorable vs. unfavorable views of the Democratic Party.  It's even worse for the GOP: Fifty-three percent see it negatively, 40 percent favorably.

The Democratic Party’s rating is its lowest in polls since November 1984, days before Ronald Reagan’s landslide re-election, when it hit 47 percent favorable.  The Republican Party is better off than its historic low in popularity -- 31 percent in 1998, upon the impeachment of Bill Clinton -- but still eight points below the Democrats according to that poll.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun292011

GOP Hopeful Fred Karger Calls Republican Platform ‘Despicable’

ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- Fred Karger has launched his long-shot Republican presidential bid with a unique distinction: He claims to be the first openly gay man to seek the presidency.

On Tuesday, Karger told ABC News’ Top Line about his challenges in “trying to change the Republican party to the Republican Party I grew up with.”

“The Republican Party, you know, and the party platform is just despicable.  It’s 27 pages of trying to drive people away,” said Karger, who worked on Republican presidential campaigns for much of his career before dedicating himself to activism for gay rights.

Karger said he’s gotten a warm welcome to the presidential field by Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus and other party officials.  But he acknowledged some “bumps in the road,” such as Iowa GOP National Committeeman Steve Scheffler’s vow to “work overtime to help ensure that your political aspirations are aborted right here in Iowa.”

“The parties and the state parties have been very welcoming to me as the first openly gay candidate,” he said.  “I think that it’s important that it be -- that that barrier be broken by a Republican, because this is the Republican Party of old.”

Karger cited the party’s history, including Abraham Lincoln’s freeing of the slaves, and Theodore Roosevelt’s welcoming of African-Americans into his White House.

On the subject of history, Karger criticized his fellow presidential candidate, Rep. Michele Bachmann, for saying that John Quincy Adams’ opposition to slavery qualifies him as a Founding Father who worked “tirelessly” to eliminate slavery. (The nation’s sixth president was just shy of his ninth birthday on July 4, 1776.)

“The compromise was counting black slaves in the South as three-fifths of a person.  Well, as a gay American I sometimes feel like that too,” Karger said.  “We need to correct this, and we need to correct the facts.  And I hope Michele Bachmann will be doing her homework.  And you know, she's kind of a phenomenon, but I look forward to debating her and some of the others and talking about real issues.”

And while he’s a candidate himself, Karger said he’s still not thrilled with the presidential field.

“I'm like a lot of the American public -- 70 percent of Republicans are not happy with the current field, and I guess that includes me,” he said.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Jun212011

Despite GOP Encouragement, Thune (Still) Not Running for President

Win McNamee/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., spent a good portion of the day denying that he is rethinking a bid for the Republican nomination for president. And he wants everyone to know...for right now, he’s not running for president.

“I am where I am and my focus is on the United States Senate,” Thune said on Fox News Channel Tuesday evening.

Conservative commentator Bill Kristol told C-SPAN Monday that Thune is rethinking a presidential run, reenergizing the questions of whether Thune is really out of the race for good.

“He (Thune) was sort of the more establishment favorite of the senators,” Kristol said, adding that he’s been told Thune is rethinking. “I think a lot of this depends if there is a huge vacuum. If Romney seems to fall through, if Pawlenty doesn’t take off, if neither Perry nor Bachmann seem like they’re getting majority support. There will be a big vacuum in September. Someone could get in. And Thune would like to do it.”

Thune admitted, though, that some in his party have recently been encouraging him to reconsider.

“I’ve had some encouragement to reconsider where I was when I announced that I won’t be running this time around,” Thune said, “And it may continue to happen. I think that’s partly based on the field as people dropped out of the race and people thought, ‘Well we need more people in there,' you know, 'Thune took a pass but maybe he’d think about reconsidering.'”

What about a vice presidential consideration if asked?

“You never say never,” Thune said. “But my view is there is plenty of work for me to do in the Senate. I like what I’m doing and I have not changed my position with regards to the issue in national office. I just think right now I just need to be focused on trying to get spending and debt under control and trying to get policies enacted that would create jobs in this country.”

Thune said that he is not sure that the Republican field is set yet and that he anticipates it will widen in the days and weeks to come.

Thune, the current chairman of the Senate Republican Policy Committee, entered the Senate in 2004, defeating Democratic Leader Tom Daschle.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Sunday
Jun192011

John McCain Chastises 2012 Republican Field for Isolationism

ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- Former Republican presidential nominee Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) took aim at his party for what he called its growing movement towards isolationism, chastising the current GOP presidential field for not supporting U.S. military intervention in Libya and calling for speedy troop withdrawals from Afghanistan.

"This is isolationism. There's always been an isolation strain in the Republican party, that Pat Buchanan wing of our party," McCain told Christiane Amanpour, anchor of ABC’s This Week. "But now it seems to have moved more center stage."

At the first major Republican presidential primary debate held recently in New Hampshire, several candidates criticized U.S. military involvement in Libya, while on Afghanistan former Mass. Governor Mitt Romney said, "It's time for us to bring our troops home as soon as we possibly can" based on the advice of military commanders.

"I wonder what Ronald Reagan would be saying today?" questioned McCain, saying the isolationism is a stark departure from traditional Republican foreign policy positions. "That is not the Republican party that has been willing to stand up for freedom for people for all over the world."

McCain says he’s confident though, that the party will find the right candidate for th 2012 election.

While McCain is best known as President Obama's rival during the 2008 presidential election, he has been a strong proponent of Obama's intervention against the regime of Libyan President Moammar Gadhafi, who McCain described as "crumbling."

"If we do not continue this effort in Libya, if Gadhafi remains in power, it could have profound consequences," McCain warned.

McCain said he disagreed with Republican candidates like Michele Bachmann who said at the GOP debate that the U.S. had "no vital national interest" there.

"I strongly disagree with her and others," McCain said. "The fact is our interest are our values. And our values are that we don't want people needlessly slaughtered by the thousands if we can prevent such activity."

With President Barack Obama's July deadline to begin troop withdrawal in Afghanistan approaching, McCain said the U.S. cannot give up recent gains through a swift withdrawal, saying he would support a "modest withdrawal" of five to ten thousand support troops in the coming months.

"We abandoned Afghanistan once and we paid a very heavy price for it in the attacks of 9/11," McCain said. "We do need to move into the eastern Afghanistan and finish this fight with one more season."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Sunday
Jun192011

Perry Addresses Republican Conference, Still No Hint of 2012 Run

Governor[dot]State [dot]Tx[dot]us(NEW ORLEANS) -- Amid chants of “Run, Rick, Run,” Texas Gov. Rick Perry sounded like a candidate at a speech in New Orleans Saturday, as he revved up a crowd with talk about social conservative values and criticism of President Obama.

“That mix of arrogance and audacity that guides the Obama administration is an affront to every freedom-loving American and a threat to every private sector job in this country,” Perry told the crowd at the Republican Leadership Conference. “They clearly think that they know best.  And let me tell you I vehemently disagree.”

Perry introduced himself as a leader grappling with how to solve the problems afflicting the country. 

“It doesn’t matter what your zip code is or where you’re from. We’re all facing the same challenges in America. I stand before you today a disciplined conservative Texan, a committed Republican and a proud American, united with you in the desire to restore our nation and revive the American dream.”

Perry bragged about the economic success in Texas -- from creating nearly half of all new jobs in the country in the past two years to balancing its budget -- along with reinforcing social conservative values such as strengthening right-to-life legislation.

During his speech, Perry asked attendees to text a phone number with the word “Forward,” which resulted in a reply text routing users to Perry’s website featuring a video entitled “Moving America Forward.” 

The Texas Tribune reported that Perry 2012 buttons were a hot ticket item at the booths at the convention this weekend.  An adviser for Perry told the Texas Tribune Saturday that a decision about a presidential run is still weeks away. Perry did not give any hints about a 2012 run during his speech but stressed the importance of electing Republican officials across the board.

Perry received multiple standing ovations during his speech and left the room to chants of “Run, Rick, Run” and “Perry 2012.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







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