The first lines were drawn last week when strategists outside of the RNC noted that under Chairman Michael Steele’s byline, the committee sent out two memoranda touting the RNC’s success — even before Tuesday’s elections.
“When I ran for chairman, I pledged that the RNC would be a full partner with states having elections in 2009. I also pledged that the RNC would invest in Republican candidates on the ballot from the courthouse to Congress in every region of the country,” Steele wrote in a memo sent out last Friday.
On Tuesday night, Steele took pains to appear at victory parties with both Bob McDonnell, the GOP’s nominee in Virginia, and Chris Christie, the candidate in New Jersey. Steele flew by private jet from Richmond, where McDonnell gave his acceptance speech, to northern New Jersey, where Christie addressed his supporters.
And in a Wednesday morning press conference, Steele repeatedly took credit for the $13 million the RNC spent on both races and the thousands of volunteer hours it donated.