Republicans’ Ground Game in the States: Strapped, Sputtering, and Shuttered

It’s been an awful week for Donald Trump and the GOP as headline after headline has come out revealing how Republicans’ ground game across the country is skeletal, struggling for cash and shutting down offices.

“Under Trump, MAGA Republicans’ disorganization and chaos are leaving their infrastructure and ground game in the dust, but that’s no surprise considering these are the same extremists that are making election denialism a litmus test for employment,” DNC spokesperson Rhyan Lake said. “Coupled with their extreme agenda to rip away Americans’ freedoms and drag our country backward, the GOP has a losing message and flailing operation. The contrast couldn’t be more stark as Democrats in critical battleground states and beyond are unified, fortified, and ready to defeat MAGA Republicans once again.”

Take a look at the latest:

AP: Trump slow to invest in states that could decide election as some in GOP fear ‘skeleton’ campaign

“The Trump campaign and its partners at the Republican National Committee haven’t yet made significant general election investments in the state, according to Michigan Republican Party Chairman Pete Hoekstra. The national committee, he said, hasn’t transferred any money to the state party to help bolster its operations heading into the general election. There are no specific programs in place to court voters of color. And there’s no general election field staff in place.

“We’ve got the skeleton right now,” Hoekstra said. “We’re going to have to put more meat on it.”

“It’s much the same in presidential battleground states across the country, according to Republican operatives and party officials involved in campaign planning elsewhere.

“Indeed, just six months before the first early votes are cast in the general election between Trump and Biden, Trump’s Republican Party has little general election infrastructure to speak of.”

Axios: Trump’s RNC struggles in swing states as Biden’s team grows

“The Trump-led Republican National Committee is scrambling to boost staffs and give loyalty tests in seven battleground states at a time when several GOP state parties are plagued by dysfunction and disarray.

“Why it matters: Less than eight months before the Nov. 5 election, significant parts of the RNC’s get-out-the-vote operation in states likely to decide the election are playing catch-up after Trump’s team ousted 60 staffers in its recent takeover.

“The big picture: Many Republicans fear the RNC upheaval — and unrelated chaos in state parties, particularly in swing states Michigan and Arizona — is a setback for a party that for years has tried to get more volunteers to recruit support in their neighborhoods.”

MSNBC: Trump’s RNC arrangement could suck the life out of state GOP chapters

“Over the last couple years, several local Republican Party chapters have fallen into financial ruin, in many cases after squandering their money promoting Donald Trump’s bogus allegations of fraud in the 2020 election.

“Now the former president’s new fundraising arrangement with the Republican National Committee could worsen the GOP’s financial woes at the local level, according to NBC News

“So state parties will be last in line to receive funding. And that’s bad news for the many state-level GOP chapters — including several in potential swing states — that have struggled to get their finances in order and looked to the RNC for help ever since 2020. Those include the Michigan GOP, the Arizona GOP, the Colorado GOP and the Minnesota GOP, just to name a few.”

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: RNC’s former Hispanic outreach center in Milwaukee soon to become an ice cream shop

“If the Republican National Committee wants to reopen its Hispanic outreach center in Milwaukee this cycle, it’s going to need to find a new space.

“The center’s former location will soon be an ice cream shop.

“The RNC in January told the Journal Sentinel it planned to reopen the Milwaukee center after quietly closing it and others across the country following the midterms. In recent weeks, however, several media outlets reported former President Donald Trump’s campaign threw out the plans to open new minority outreach centers and revive previous locations. 

“An RNC spokeswoman declined to answer questions about the status of its plans for the Milwaukee Hispanic center. She did not respond this week when asked if the committee was searching for another Milwaukee location now that a new tenant leased its former space.”

The Detroit News: Michigan Republican Party office was ‘stripped down to the bare bones,’ new leader says

“The new leader of the Michigan Republican Party says his administration is having trouble taking control of the state GOP’s website and tracking down computers that are reportedly worth $113,000, seven months before a pivotal presidential election.”

“After months of internal divisions and fundraising struggles, members of the Michigan GOP’s state committee voted to unseat Karamo as the party’s chairwoman on Jan. 6.”

Axios: The AZGOP is selling the headquarters it bought 9 months ago

“After just nine months, the Arizona Republican Party’s new headquarters is about to become its old headquarters.”

“The big picture: The AZGOP has been plagued by dysfunction and poor fundraising over the past few years, just as it attempts to fight back against recent Democratic political gains.”

Albuquerque Journal: RNC closed Hispanic community centers in District 2, but hasn’t given up on flipping the congressional seat

“In August 2022, the Republican National Committee opened with fanfare a “Hispanic community center” in the South Valley.

But the center quietly closed after Election Day 2022, when Yvette Herrell narrowly lost her reelection bid to current Congressman Gabe Vasquez.”

CT Mirror: Will RNC reopen Black, Latino community center in CT? It’s unclear

“But shortly after the end of the midterm elections season, the RNC wound down many of the centers, with only a handful remaining open. The RNC’s Black & Hispanic Community Center in New Britain shut down at the end of 2022, apparently one of the casualties.