The chairman of the Republican National Committee said today that a red state/blue state analysis of national politics is a “road to nowhere” for the party’s future.
Reince Priebus, in Seattle to listen to party activists and spread his message of growth and renewal, said that no state is permanently blue and the Republicans should not cede any to the Democrats, as they did in the 2012 election by concentrating just on eight swing states.
Had GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney not written off Washington state, Priebus said, Rob McKenna would be governor today.
“Local candidates suffer when the national camp doesn’t come into a state to compete,” Priebus said. “Rob was rowing alone.” McKenna, a moderate, lost to Jay Inslee by about three percentage points in November.
McKenna stood with Priebus for a brief news conference following what the chairman described as a spirited conversation with state GOP leaders about how the party could improve. Priebus, 40, has been touring the country over the past few weeks, including meetings with black leaders in Atlanta and Hispanic and Asian-American leaders in Los Angeles.
President Obama beat Romney in just about every demographic except white males. Priebus said the GOP has to become more open and inclusive of new members. It also has to build permanent outreach and get-out-the-vote operations and not just mount campaigns in the six months before an election.
“We are in a world of permanent politics,” Priebus said.