During the Republican debate last week, Vivek Ramaswamy made headlines when he used his opening comments to attack Republcian National Chairwoman Ronna Romney McDaniel, a major Trump ally, demanding that she step down after another round of electoral losses incurred by the GOP.
I’m sick and tired of this Republican Establishment that has made us a party of losers. Where is the accountability for years of losing: 2018, 2020, 2022 and now last night? I’m calling on @GOPChairwoman to resign tonight. pic.twitter.com/8hxVqWGlwL
— Vivek Ramaswamy (@VivekGRamaswamy) November 9, 2023
The upstart candidate also blasted the RNC for selecting NBC News to host that night’s debate and characterized the Republican Party as one of losers under McDaniel’s leadership. Ramaswamy’s concerns didn’t go unnoticed, including by some members of the GOP who told the Daily Caller they agreed with his criticism on the direction of the debates and the RNC’s leadership.
“I would be remiss, I would be lying to you if I haven’t seen literally hundreds of people come through my mailbox and tag me demanding [McDaniel’s] resignation. I think [Ramaswamy] is speaking for a lot of people. He’s the only one who was bold enough to say what he has seen from the base and the base is our primary voters,” Tyler Bowyer, an Arizona national committeeman, told the Daily Caller.
Following the debate, the Daily Caller reached out to the several RNC national committee members as well as RNC state chairmen for their reactions. The state leaders who the Daily Caller originally spoke to were split in their views on McDaniel, with some backing the presidential candidate’s call out while others found his comments “inappropriate” and disappointing.
“I think he was on point with a lot of things that he said about the debate and the host of the debate, and I think he was in he was communicating what a lot of primary voters have been saying. And the problem, I don’t know if the problem is the chairwoman of the party, but there’s frustration in our party with the fact that we keep losing big races,” Evan Power, vice chairman of the Republican Party of Florida, told the Daily Caller.
This morning, Vivek upped the ante against McDaniel, launching FireRonna.com, a petition to unseat the Republican National Committee chairwoman.
McDaniel told Stuart Varney on Fox Business that it was understandable that Ramaswamy would be attacking her. He has no other choice because his poll numbers are collapsing. “Listen, he’s at 4%, he needs a headline,” she said on Thursday.
Mrs. McDaniel explained that the national GOP “doesn’t do state races.”
“We’re a federal committee, so we weren’t involved in those races on Tuesday. I know Vivek’s kind of newer to the party. He voted for Obama, so he may not know that,” she continued.
Despite losing the last three elections, McDaniel has remained in charge of the GOP because she has the backing of former president Donald Trump.
Trump made Ronna Romney RNC chair.
He bragged about it recently. Trump's words: "I was instrumental in getting her to head of the RNC."
— Pedro L. Gonzalez (@emeriticus) November 8, 2023
Under her leadership, the RNC has used some of its money typically spent on campaigns to pay millions of dollars in legal bills stacked up by Trump over the past few years.
The party was forced to stop the practice once Trump announced he was seeking a second term for president late last year.