RNC Summer Meeting: "Victory 365"

With just under 100 days to the midterm elections, the theme for the meeting is “Victory 365,” where the RNC will showcase what we’re providing candidates up and down the ballot – from boots on the ground to new technology and digital and data capabilities.

When:                                August 6-8, 2014

Where:                               The Westin Michigan Avenue Chicago
                                           909 North Michigan Avenue
                                           Chicago, IL 60611

Thursday, August 7

9:45 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.    Standing Committee on Rules Meeting
2:30 - 3:30 p.m.               Rising Stars Townhall

Friday, August 8

10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.  RNC General Session
                                         (Will include remarks from Chairman Priebus and Co-Chairman Sharon Day,
                                         Committee Business and a final vote on the 2016 National Convention)
12:00 – 12:30 p.m.           Press Conference on the 2016 National Convention
12:30 – 2:00 p.m.             Luncheon with U.S. Congressman Paul Ryan (WI-1) and Gubernatorial
                                         Candidate Pete Ricketts (NE)
6:30 – 10:00 p.m.             Reception and Dinner at Shedd Aquarium with Governor Scott Walker

RNC Chairman Reince Priebus
2014 RNC Summer Meeting
Chicago, IL
August 8, 2014

[Remarks As Prepared For Delivery]

Once again, welcome to Chicago. What better way to show we’re serious about being present everywhere than to come to the president’s hometown! 
Of course, long before Illinois was the home of President Obama, it was the home of our first Republican president. And we’re proud to be here today in the Land of Lincoln.
This meeting is the last time we’re all together before November. After today, we head back to our home states and work non-stop to get our candidates elected.
 We have successful governors running for re-election. We have future governors who will bring new leadership to states where Democrats have failed.
Like right here in Illinois. I’m looking forward to a big Republican victory here, when voters send Governor Quinn packing and elect Bruce Rauner the next governor and his running mate, and our new RNC Rising Star, Evelyn Sanguinetti, the next lieutenant governor.
In the Senate races, we have so many new candidates to be proud of, who are going to help us win back the majority. Just next door, in Iowa, for example, we have a mother, a grandmother, a farmer, and a soldier. That’s Joni Ernst, who was featured in our video, and she’s going to show Bruce Braley what Iowa values are all about.
In the House, we’re not just going to protect our majority, we’re going to expand it. Across the country, Republicans are taking on out-of-touch Democrats to make that happen. Including Will Hurd, another Rising Star, who’s running in the 23rd District of Texas.
The RNC is giving our candidates access to more support, more tools, and better data than in midterms past.
And we’re working with our partners. Along with Senator John Cornyn, I’m chairing the Targeted State Victory Committee, the new joint fundraising effort between the NRSC and our state parties to help make sure our Senate candidates have the resources to win in November.
The RNC has deployed a permanent ground game unlike anything we’ve done before. We didn’t just create a few new programs. We established a new way of thinking. A national party, permanently in communities, year-round.
You know I like to quote Vince Lombardi. And he put it well when he said, “Winning is not a sometime thing; it’s an all the time thing. You don’t win once in a while; you don't do things right once in a while; you do them right all of the time.”
We’re a stronger party this year, and we’re going to have a solid foundation for 2016. We’re going to be more than a party that shows up in the fall. We’re going to be more than a U-Haul trailer of cash for our nominee.
We’re going to work every single day to share a message of opportunity with every American, especially those who don’t know they’re Republicans yet.
Our debates will be good for our candidates and for voters—not a field day for the media.
And our convention in Cleveland is going to be world-class. Don’t take my word for it. Talk to our site selection committee. They’ll tell you that Cleveland is a city ready to roll out the welcome mat and help us nominate the next president of the United States.
But before we take the White House in 2016, we have to retake the Senate in November….
On every single issue, Harry Reid’s Senate has made life harder for working families.
And that’s why we have a very simple message for America: it’s time to fire Harry Reid.
The Republican-led House of Representatives has passed over 330 bills, including 43 jobs bills, that have gone nowhere in the Democrat-controlled Senate. Harry Reid won’t let them. He won’t put them to a vote.
So if you want jobs, fire Reid.
If you want better healthcare, cheaper energy, better schools, fire Reid.
If you’re tired of dysfunction and gridlock, fire Reid.
And if you want to stop the Obama agenda, fire Reid.
It doesn’t matter what Democrat is on the ballot in your state. A vote for a Democrat is a vote for Harry Reid. And if Harry Reid is in charge, it will be two more years of his way or the highway.
Thankfully, the majority of Americans aren’t going to stand for that—because they stand with us on important issues, like opposing ObamaCare.
Here’s a tip for Democrats. Healthcare reform is not a success when it makes healthcare more expensive, doctors harder to find, and insurance harder to keep.
In the last two years, ObamaCare has caused Americans to lose their jobs, lose their doctors, and lose their plans. In November, we get to return the favor and make sure Democrats lose their majority.
But it’s not just healthcare where the Democrats have it backward. The same is true on energy.
We’re the party that says we want to use every kind of energy, wind, solar, hydro, oil, gas, coal, nuclear, all of the above. So that your electric bill is cheap and it doesn’t take half your paycheck to fill up your car.
But the Democrat Party would who rather let Canada ship its oil to China than let them send it down here to America in the Keystone Pipeline.
Democrats say they don’t want that oil because they don’t want to burn fossil fuels. So their answer is to ship the oil to China. How do you think it gets there?
When it comes to education, Democrats are in the business of taking away opportunity from kids. We’re the party that says every child deserves a good school, and every parent should have the chance to choose that school.
They’re the party that sued Louisiana to take scholarships away from disadvantaged kids, to take kids out of good schools and send them back to failing schools.
They’re the party that wants to kill the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship. And they’re the party that won’t allow a vote on a commonsense charter school bill in Harry Reid’s Senate.
Finally, we’re the party that says we need to defend the Constitution. They’re the party voting to rewrite the First Amendment. It’s up to us to stop them….
Democrats have it backward. The First Amendment is sacred. ObamaCare is not.
In the end, every issue comes back to freedom. So many problems could be fixed if we just gave Americans their freedom back. The freedom they deserve—and the freedom we’re guaranteed by the Constitution.
Freedom for religious groups to live their lives according to their conscience.
Freedom for civic groups to speak their mind without harassment from the IRS.
Freedom for parents to choose the school that’s right for their kids.
Freedom for patients to choose their doctors, without needing permission from a bureaucrat.
Freedom for small businesses to overcome outdated regulation to hire more workers.
Freedom for the next generation not to pay the debt of this generation.
And freedom for everyone,…to find a good job that pay the bills and opens the door to the American Dream…

…we’re here in the Land of Lincoln. And it was the Great Emancipator who said that the Constitution, quote, “is the only safeguard of our liberties.”
If we let liberals undermine the Constitution, our freedoms disappear.
It’s up to us to remind Democrats that the government serves the people; people don’t serve government. The Constitution tells us that ultimate power is found in “we the people.”
“We the people” are not here for government to control. We’re here to control the government, because like Lincoln said, ours is a government, of the people, by people, for the people.
And come November, “we the people” are going to say fire Reid. Stop Obama. Protect the Constitution. And get America working.
We’re going take back the Senate. Expand our House majority. Elect great governors and Republican majorities in our state capitals.
So keep up the good work. God bless all of you… 
August 8, 2014

RNC Elects 2016 Debate Committee

WASHINGTON – The Republican National Committee (RNC) announced today the members of the 2016 Debate Committee.


1.      Peggy Lambert, National Committeewoman, for Tennessee

2.      Randy Evans, National Committeeman, for Georgia

3.      Henry Barbour, National Committeeman, for Mississippi


1.      Mary Buestrin, National Committeewoman, for Wisconsin

2.      Bob Bennett, National Committeeman, for Ohio

3.      Helen Van Etten, National Committeewoman, for Kansas

Northeast Region

1.     Juliana Bergeron, National Committeewoman, for New Hampshire

2.     Ron Kaufman, National Committeeman, for Massachusetts

3.     Rob Gleason, State Chairman, for Pennsylvania

4.     Steve Duprey, National Committeeman, for New Hampshire, who will be chairman of the committee

Western Region:

1.     Solomon Yue, National Committeeman, for Oregon

2.     Jeff Kent, National Committeeman, for Washington

3.     Susan Hutchison, State Chairman, for Washington

In May, the RNC Standing Committee on Rules created a standing committee to determine when, where and on what networks GOP presidential debates will take place. The Debate Committee will be tasked with establishing a system of presidential primary debates that inform voters and give candidates a fair hearing.

“The members of the Debate Committee have an important task ahead of them. They will be responsible for implementing the new GOP debate policies in the 2016 presidential election. I have no doubt the committee, under the leadership of Steve Duprey, will give thoughtful consideration for each of the debate elements,” said RNC Chairman Reince Priebus.

“I look forward to getting this process underway and  gathering the input from the Debate Committee. I believe it is imperative we share the message of the Republican Party on a national stage in the most effective way possible so that all Americans can see the distinct differences between the two parties.”

August 8, 2014

RNC announces Cleveland as 2016 Convention City  

WASHINGTON – Today, the Republican National Committee voted to officially select Cleveland, Ohio to host the 2016 Republican National Convention.  Republican National Committee members voted unanimously to select Cleveland as the 2016 host.
Following today’s vote, RNC Chairman Reince Priebus and Site Selection Chairwoman Enid Mickelsen issued the following statements.
 RNC Chairman Reince Priebus:
“I am beyond thrilled to announce Cleveland as the official site for the Republican National Convention in 2016.  Cleveland is ready to show the country what they have to offer. The city of Cleveland has gone above and beyond and will be a fantastic host for our convention in 2016.
RNC Site Selection Chairman Enid Mickelsen:
“Cleveland is a world class city that has demonstrated their ability to provide our next presidential candidate with a launching pad to the White House. I look forward to working with Cleveland in the coming months to ensure the Republican convention is the best yet.”
August 7, 2014

RNC Announces Four New Rising Stars

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today at the RNC Summer Meeting in Chicago, Illinois, Chairman Reince Priebus and Co-Chairman Sharon Day added four individuals to the RNC Rising Stars program. This group joins the 14 Rising Stars announced at previous meetings in Boston, MA, Washington, DC, and Memphis, TN.

The RNC launched the Rising Stars program just one year ago in an effort to highlight and support Republican leaders who are making names for themselves within the party. Each star will be showcased on GOP.com and offered a national platform to share their stories and perspectives: 
Chairman Priebus and Co-Chairman Day unveiled the next group of Rising Stars in Chicago:

  • Will Hurd, Republican Nominee for Texas’ 23rd Congressional District
  • BJ Pak, Georgia State Representative
  • Amanda Pasdon, West Virginia House of Delegates
  • Evelyn Sanguinetti, Candidate for Lieutenant Governor of Illinois

“I am proud and excited to welcome Will, BJ, Amanda, and Evelyn as the fourth installment to our Rising Stars program,” said Chairman Priebus. “These four individuals embody the GOP’s message of freedom and opportunity and I look forward to working with them as we grow and strengthen our party.”
“We can all learn from the diverse stories and perspective that this group has to offer,” said Co-Chair Day. “I am continually impressed by the incredible accomplishments and talent that each Rising Star class brings to the table.”
Click here to visit the Rising Stars webpage.
Biographies of the 2014 Summer Meeting Rising Stars:
Will Hurd @WillHurd
Will is a native San Antonian with thirteen years of experience impacting some of the most challenging issues in national security and international business. Since June 2010 Will has been a Senior Advisor with the cybersecurity firm FusionX, which he joined following a decade of federal service and a run for public office in Texas. As a member of the FusionX team Will helps tackle a wide range of complex cybersecurity challenges facing large manufacturers, financial institutions, major retailers and critical infrastructure providers. Additionally, from 2010 to 2013, Will was a partner with a strategic advisory firm, Crumpton Group LLC, where he provided leadership across the full range of Crumpton Group’s service offerings—helping companies capture opportunities in international markets while managing risks to their physical assets, intellectual property and human resources.
Prior to returning to Texas in 2010, Will served for almost a decade as an undercover officer at the Central Intelligence Agency. At the CIA, he worked at the nexus of some of America’s most important national security issues leading intelligence operations on counterterrorism, cybersecurity and other critical threats. The majority of his career was spent overseas in South Asia and the Middle East where his primary mission was the recruitment of foreign assets, collection and dissemination of intelligence in support of the President and senior government policymaker’s national security decision making.
Will has the pleasure of serving on a School Advisory Committee within the Northside Independent School District (NISD) and he had the honor of being recognized as one of NISD’s “Pillars of Character” for the 2011-2012 school year. He is also a board member of the World Affairs Council of San Antonio.
A native of San Antonio, Texas and the youngest of three siblings, Will graduated in May 2000 from Texas A&M University in College Station with a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science. While at A&M, he served as the President of the Student Union and was elected Student Body President.
BJ Pak @Votebjpak
B.J. represents the 108th District of the Georgia House of Representatives,  and is the first American of Korean descent to be elected into the Georgia General Assembly, and the first Asian American Republican elected to any State Legislature in the Southeastern United States. As State Representative, B.J. currently serves as Deputy Majority Whip, as the Vice Chair of the Judiciary Non-Civil Committee, as Secretary of the Code Revision Committee, and as a member of the Health and Human Services Committee. He is also a member the Ways and Means Committee, where he serves as the Vice Chairman of the Income Tax subcommittee, and as a member of the Sales & Use Tax, and Public Finance and Policy subcommittees.  
B.J. was selected by James Magazine as one of the “Most Influential Legislators.”  B.J. is a former federal prosecutor and currently a Partner at the Atlanta law office of Ballard Spahr LLP, where he works to assist his clients solve complex business, regulatory, and criminal issues. He listed in the highly selective Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business, and is recognized as a Georgia "Super Lawyer" by Atlanta Magazine, Best Attorneys Under 40 by the Asian Pacific American Bar Association, and one of 13 attorneys to watch by the Fulton County Daily Report.
B.J. and his wife, Sandra, have three daughters and reside in Gwinnett County, GA. He earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting from Stetson University, and a Juris Doctorate, summa cum laude, from the University of Illinois College of Law.
Amanda Pasdon @Amanda_Pasdon
Amanda is the Director of Business Development and Investment for the West Virginia Chamber of Commerce, the largest business advocacy organization in the state and she is a member of the West Virginia House of Delegates.  She is the Minority Chair of the House Education Committee and serves on several other committees, including; Health and Human Services, Political Subdivisions and Banking and Insurance.
As a resident of Morgantown, she has taken an active role in her community and the state by serving on the boards of the Monongalia Child Advocacy Center, Golden Horseshoe and the Association of Chamber of Commerce Professionals and very much enjoys her involvement with Girl Scouts, Habitat for Humanity and Generation West Virginia.
Amanda has been recognized as one of The State Journal’s ‘Generation Next’s 40 under 40’, she was named by GOPAC, an organization dedicated to educating and electing a new generation of Republican Leaders, as a ‘2013 Emerging Leader’ and she is an active participant in the RNC’s ’14 in 14’ women’s initiative to build a strong network of messengers for the Republican party leading up to the November elections.
Evelyn Sanguinetti @Evelynetti
Evelyn is currently a candidate for Lieutenant Governor of Illinois. She is also an Adjunct Professor of Law at The John Marshall Law School and current City Councilwoman of Wheaton.
Evelyn’s father legally immigrated to the United States from Ecuador, and her mother entered the country as a Cuban refugee. Her parents were still teenagers when she was born in Miami, Florida, and Evelyn grew up with Spanish as her first language. Her parents often struggled to make ends meet, but Evelyn found her way through her love of playing the piano and was able to attend a top public school for fine arts in Miami.
Evelyn received her bachelor’s degree in piano performance from Florida International University and soon moved to Chicago to attend The John Marshall Law School. Following law school, Evelyn worked as an Assistant Attorney General in the Illinois Attorney General’s Office under Jim Ryan before transitioning to private practice.
Evelyn currently lives in Wheaton with her husband, Raymond, and their three children. Evelyn is also a member of the Wheaton Chamber of Commerce and the DuPage County Bar Association.
The program has now featured a total of 18 Rising Stars, including those recognized at previous meetings:
Summer 2013:
Karin Agness, Founder and President of the Network of enlightened Women (NeW)
Scott G. Erickson, Heritage Foundation Writer and San Jose Police Officer
Marilinda Garcia, New Hampshire State Representative
T.W. Shannon, Speaker of the Oklahoma House of Representatives
Winter 2014:
Chelsi P. Henry, Cabinet Aide to the Chief Financial Officer of Florida
Alison Howard, Conservative Activist
Alex Smith, National Chair of the College Republican National Committee
Kimberly Yee, Arizona State Senator
Monica Youngblood, New Mexico State Representative
Spring 2014
Amber Barno, Army Veteran, Military Advisory at Concerned Veterans for America, and Senior Fellow at Independent Women’s Forum
Veronica Muzquiz Edwards, Founder and CEO of InGenesis
Lee Jackson, Republican Youth Activist and Member of the RSU 34 Board of Directors
Clarice Navarro, Colorado State Representative District 47
Mike Pantelides, Mayor of Annapolis