GOP needs 'new ideas' to succeed – but will McDaniel listen?

GOP needs 'new ideas' to succeed – but will McDaniel listen?

GOP needs 'new ideas' to succeed – but will McDaniel listen?

While she admits being disappointed that Ronna McDaniel has been elected to a fourth term as chair of the Republican National Committee, a former GOP leader sees a silver lining on the party's horizon.

McDaniel (pictured above) won the race handily on Friday, receiving 111 votes compared to 51 votes for lead challenger attorney Harmeet Dhillon, four for MyPillow founder Mike Lindell, and one for former New York Congressman Lee Zeldin. During a victory speech from the podium, McDaniel – whom Donald Trump tapped as RNC chair in 2016 – vowed that "with all of us united, the Democrats are going to hear from us in 2024."

McDaniel's victory margin didn't seem to be affected by the last-minute endorsement of Dhillon by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who said the GOP has had disappointing results in 2018, 2020, and 2022.

Cathie Adams, a former chairman of the Republican Party of Texas, contends the amount of money McDaniel has brought in during her tenure played a major role in her reelection.

"Personally, I'm quite disappointed [McDaniel was reelected]. I think for the nationwide vote, the establishment has a lot of sway," she tells AFN. "And when you look at the amount of money that the incumbent has been able to bring in, I think that you're also looking at a lot of power that goes with that – and they do have a very big say with all of the members."

Adams, Cathie (TX Eagle Forum) Adams

That said, Adams is hopeful Harmeet Dhillon's challenge will have a positive impact on the party moving forward. The Texas Republican argues "a very exciting thing" comes out of every challenged election.

"And that is the challenger brings new ideas to the forefront – and the incumbent has got to hear them," Adams emphasizes. "I think Rona McDaniel is smart enough to have heard them and to make changes that are absolutely going to be necessary in order for the party to win in the future."

In the aftermath of Friday's election, both McDaniel and Dhillon alluded to a conciliatory approach. "I look forward to working alongside conservative leaders, including Harmeet and Mike, from across our party to deliver on our promises to the American people," said McDaniel. And Dhillon urged those who supported her campaign to "rally around our party and its candidates" to win elections and deliver results.

According to Adams, the RNC must figure out why the GOP is so popular among the grassroots and yet isn't seeing it at the polls.