UPDATE 5/8: Please check below the fold for new revelations in the case of New York Republican Representative Vito Fosello, whose actions have suddenly put yet another GOP congressional seat into play. [end update]
In light of his lackluster Q1 fundraising, the MN-01 Republican congressional candidate endorsed by his party at the end of March stated that he thought national party leadership would come to his aid financially.
A flurry of recent articles suggests that scenario could be growing increasingly unlikely.
Yesterday, Politico reported GOP leaders warn of election disaster. Dire news for incumbent House Republicans included such gems as:
Shellshocked House Republicans got warnings from leaders past and present Tuesday: Your party’s message isn’t good enough to prevent disaster in November, and neither is the NRCC’s money. . . .
. . .And in a closed-door session at the Capitol, National Republican Congressional Committee Chairman Tom Cole (R-Okla.) told members that the NRCC doesn’t have enough cash to “save them” in November if they don’t raise enough money or run strong campaigns themselves. . . .
. . .Cole’s overall message was clear, said members who sat through the meeting: “If you’re not out doing your own work, and you’re waiting for the NRCC to come in at the last minute and save you, it ain’t gonna happen.” That’s how one lawmaker characterized Cole’s talk, adding that the NRCC is “not going to have the resources” to help all members “and Democrats will have a lot more money.” . . .
If the NRCC can't help its endangered incumbent members who are unable to put together sufficient war chests, we can only wonder about pie-in-the-sky thinking on the part of a candidate who faces a primary battle with thousands of dollars less than his better known primary opponent. Neither Republican still standing had a cash on hand balance approaching $100,000 at the end of March, while Walz had $1 million in the bank and no debts.
And then there's today's report, House GOP rallies at White House:
Seeking to put a spate of bad news behind them, House Republicans headed over to the White House on Wednesday morning, as members gathered for a rally with President Bush. . . .
. . ."It was a lovefest," said Rep. Steve LaTourette (R-Ohio) of the meeting with Bush.
Bush was introduced by House Minority Leader John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) and then took questions from members for about 45 minutes, according to GOP aides.
Given that George W. Bush is proving to be the most unpopular American president of modern times, we're hoping word of the bonding spreads from Preston to Pipestone, from Lake City to Luverne and all points in between. That nice picture of Boehner and Bush should help.
CQ Politics reports in GOP tries to regroup:
Losses in two recent special elections combined with prospects for a tough contest next week sent House Republicans scrambling for change — both in words and deeds.
Minority Leader John A. Boehner told his caucus behind closed doors Tuesday that Americans won’t vote for Republicans until they fix their “brand” and convince voters they will fix Washington, according to members who were present.
An open question is whether that effort might also include changes at the National Republican Congressional Committee, which is led by Rep. Tom Cole of Oklahoma.
Boehner has been unhappy with candidate recruitment and fundraising and angry about the embezzlement of funds by an insider.
Earlier this year, the NRCC discovered unauthorized wire transfers and belatedly learned that audits had not been conducted on its accounts for several years.
The committee ended 2006 with about $990,000 less than its balance sheet showed and ended 2007 with $740,000 less. The FBI is investigating.
Meanwhile, incumbent members have resisted paying their dues to the committee, and many retiring members have been slow to offer to transfer their excess cash — both signs of a lack of faith that victory can be had in November.
The trail of special-election defeats has fed discontent with the NRCC, the bluntest of which came from Newt Gingrich (1979-99), the former Speaker who helped win a Republican majority in 1994 for the first time in 40 years. . . .