Despite losses, emails show RNC members lauding Reince Priebus

Alex Pappas Political Reporter
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Despite Republican losses at the polls, members of the Republican National Committee are privately lauding RNC chairman Reince Priebus for strengthening the party’s national organization as he ponders another two-year term.

The Daily Caller obtained internal emails among members that appear to suggest that Priebus would have strong support if he decides to run again.

“There’s work to be done, even here in Red Nebraska, but we’re confident it will get done with Reince at the helm,” Mark Fahleson, the chairman of the Nebraska Republican Party, wrote in a mass email chain to the 168-members of the RNC on Thursday.

“We need you to reload right along with the rest of us,” Henry Barbour, the Mississippi national committeeman wrote on Thursday, addressing Priebus. “Here’s to a mid-term sweep in 2014.”

Last week, Priebus told TheDC he is considering another term. “Just spending a few days with the family and will likely make a decision within a week or two,” he said.

A RNC spokesman did not immediately return a request for comment on Thursday.

Miriam Hellreich, the Hawaii national committeewoman wrote on Wednesday that Priebus has “done an outstanding job as our RNC Chairman.”

“We all look forward to working with you to continue to build our party organization in all states and territories,” Hellreich wrote. “Thank you for the tremendous energy and commitment it took to do this job. Aloha.” (RELATED: RNC chairman to decide soon on re-election)

“I totally agree,” Kirby Wilbur, the Washington state GOP chairman wrote. “Reince was and is the right man at the right time in the right place.”

John Sigler, the Delaware chairman, wrote that Priebus has “done a fantastic job.”

“The work that you and your team have done and the things that you and they have accomplished are truly incredible,” he wrote. “Thank you!”

“I would like to personally thank you, along with many of my fellow GOP friends in CA, for all that you have done and I look forward to an opportunity to work with you again toward future success for the GOP,” wrote Linda Ackerman, a national committeewoman from California.

Matt Pinnell, the chairman of the Oklahoma GOP, started the email chain by sending a Washington Post opinion article that included praise of Priebus.

“As we discussed on our conference call yesterday, we are all very thankful for a standout like Reince leading this Committee,” Pinnell wrote. “It’s clear from this article that those nationally have taken notice too. Well done again, Chairman. We still own this country, and we can still take it back. Onward.”

The Washington Times cited sources claiming at least 42 of 168 RNC members have pledged to support Priebus. House Speaker John A. Boehner and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell also privately support a second term for Priebus, according to the report.

At least one Republican — however — is not praising Priebus: his predecessor, Michael Steele.

In a conference call last week, Steele — who in 2011 was defeated by Priebus amid complaints of his leadership of the committee — suggested he had a better record than Priebus as chairman.

“What was the mess I left behind?” Steele said Monday in response to a question from The Daily Caller during a conference call organized by his firm. “Winning.”

“My point is get out of those weeds and look at what the results are, look at what the party is doing, how it’s branding itself, how it’s reaching new voters, how it’s expanding its base, how it’s appealing to people, and look at what that response is,” Steele said.

“And that should be the criteria and the judgment on RNC leadership,” he said. “Period.”

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