Already a member? Log In

The Ronna McDaniel Mutiny

Ronna McDaniel
Ronna McDaniel appears to have the inside track in the R.N.C. race. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc/Getty Images
Tina Nguyen
December 7, 2022

It’s been a busy week for Ronna McDaniel, the embattled Republican National Committee chair, as she fends off various threats to her leadership. McDaniel, of course, came in for her fair share of finger pointing last month  after the G.O.P.’s underwhelming midterms performance, dragged down in part by the plummeting stock of her close ally, Donald Trump. Nevertheless, she appears to have the inside track in the R.N.C. race, successfully swatting down former congressman and New York gubernatorial hopeful Lee Zeldin, who had been quietly talking to R.N.C. members and sizing up his chances for a coup. McDaniel also has the upper hand against Harmeet Dhillon, an R.N.C. member who recently declared that she would challenge her for the job. (A third challenge, from MyPillow C.E.O. Mike Lindell, is unanimously viewed as an absolute nonstarter.) 

Support for McDaniel has ebbed since her election in 2017; a fourth term would make her the longest-serving party chair in a century. But with 104 members on her side, any mutiny will be difficult. “Say what you will about Ronna and the way she runs the R.N.C. (though no one criticizing her has any specific complaints), but she’s always maintained very close relationships with the 168 [voting members],” a G.O.P. insider told me.