Donald Trump on Monday endorsed North Carolina Republican Party Chairman Michael Whatley as the next chairman of the Republican National Committee (RNC) and his daughter-in-law Lara Trump as co-chair, seeking to consolidate his control over the organization in as he approaches the nomination in the presidential elections, writes Reuters.
Eric and Lara TrumpPhoto: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images/Profimedia
Lara Trump, the wife of Eric Trump – the third child of Donald Trump -, is one of the most active supporters of his father-in-law. She is a frequent presence on conservative news shows and has flirted with a run for a US Senate seat in North Carolina in 2022. Trump has worked closely with his daughter Ivanka and other family members during his tenure in the House as well White.
Trump, the favorite to become the party’s nominee and face Democratic President Joe Biden in November’s presidential election, said he needs the RNC to run “flawlessly” and be “a good partner” to his campaign for the election. from 2024.
“My very talented daughter-in-law”
The move to endorse Michael Whatley follows weeks of media reports indicating that Trump has grown disaffected with incumbent Ronna McDaniel over the party’s poor fundraising and polling performance.
Sources told Reuters last week that McDaniel wants to retire after the Feb. 24 primary election in South Carolina, where Trump is the favorite, even though it is the state where his only opponent, Nikki Haley, was governor.
During McDaniel’s tenure, Trump was defeated in 2020 and the party performed worse than expected in the 2022 midterm elections.
- “I think my friend Michael Whatley should be the next leader of the RNC. Michael has been with me since the beginning, he has done a great job in his home state of North Carolina.
- “My very talented daughter-in-law, Lara Trump, has agreed to run for co-chair of the RNC … She told me she wants to take on the challenge and that it would be wonderful,” said Donald Trump.
Party rules require that there be a man and a woman in the two top roles.
As part of the Republican leadership reshuffle, Trump said Chris LaCivita, a co-manager of his campaign, will serve as the RNC’s chief operating officer. LaCivita is a longtime political operative who also worked at the RNC during the 2016 race, helping to thwart a challenge to Trump’s nomination at the Republican Convention.
McDaniel will continue to work to defeat Biden this fall, an RNC spokesman said Monday after Trump’s statement, adding, “Nothing has changed and there will be no decision or announcement regarding future plans until after South Carolina”.
Steve Scheffler, a member of the Iowa Republican National Committee, said he expected the Trump-backed leadership slate to be approved by a majority of the body’s 168 members, who are responsible for formally selecting the party’s chairman.
In his statement, Trump said he expects the RNC, which plays a vital role in mobilizing resources and attracting voters, to also act to “ensure fair and transparent elections” — a veiled hint at his false claims according to to whom he lost in 2020 due to fraud.