Ronna McDaniel, the R.N.C.’s Top Official, Plans to Step Down on March 8

Ronna McDaniel, the R.N.C.’s Top Official, Plans to Step Down on March 8

Ronna McDaniel, the chairwoman of the Republican National Committee (R.N.C.), has announced her decision to step down from her position on March 8, setting the stage for a new leadership election within the party. This move comes as former President Donald J. Trump aims to exert influence over the selection of the party’s leadership ahead of the upcoming general election.

McDaniel had previously informed Trump of her intention to resign shortly after the South Carolina primary, which took place on Saturday. Her departure will trigger an election process within the R.N.C., where Trump-backed candidates for chair and co-chair will vie for support.

Trump has publicly endorsed Michael Whatley, the chairman of the North Carolina Republican Party, to succeed McDaniel as chair, while expressing his desire for his daughter-in-law, Lara Trump, to become the next co-chair.

The former president’s remarks regarding R.N.C. leadership coincided with the South Carolina primary, where he secured a significant victory over his main opponent, former Gov. Nikki Haley.

McDaniel stated that her decision to step down aligns with the tradition of the R.N.C. undergoing changes following the nomination of a presidential candidate. She reaffirmed her commitment to winning back the White House and electing Republicans in the upcoming November elections.

As the first woman to chair the R.N.C., McDaniel expressed gratitude to Trump and other Republicans for their support. During her tenure, she highlighted achievements such as focusing on early voting and establishing an election integrity unit following the 2020 election.

Trump and his associates have emphasized the importance of election integrity in the lead-up to the 2024 general election, despite the absence of evidence of widespread fraud in the 2020 election. The former president has called for increased efforts by the R.N.C. in this regard.

Despite financial concerns within the committee, McDaniel’s tenure has been relatively free of legal controversies compared to Trump and some of his allies. While the R.N.C. allowed Trump’s lawyers to use its headquarters for a press conference, the party did not participate in the dissemination of false claims about voting systems.

McDaniel’s departure comes amid pressure from Trump’s allies in the right-wing media, who blamed her for the party’s performance in the 2022 elections. However, she received praise from several Republican officials for her leadership and contributions to the party’s electoral success.