Former Republican National Committee chair and Montana Gov. Marc Racicot issued an open letter to current RNC chair Ronna McDaniel on Sunday slamming the committee’s censure of Reps. Liz Cheney (R-WY) and Adam Kinzinger (R-IL).
Racicot’s letter, which was published by the Billings Gazette in Montana, took aim at the RNC’s reason for censuring the two Republicans: The fact that they’re on the House Jan. 6 Committee trying to get to the bottom of the Capitol insurrection that ex-President Donald Trump incited.
Racicot defended Cheney and Kinzinger, saying they were “honorably performing their investigative duties and searching for the truth as members of a duly constituted investigative committee,” not trying to “destroy” Trump, as the RNC resolution claimed.
“In the Republican National Committee’s search for power for its own sake and its obsession with winning at any cost, you have sacrificed, by your proclamation and its revelation of the presently existing soul of the party, the allegiance of a great many, and a growing number, of your most ardent and long-time supporters,” the former RNC leader wrote.
Racicot ended his missive with a plea for McDaniel to reverse the resolution.
“I urge the pursuit of this remedy with the understanding that we’re human, that politics is a competitive enterprise and that sometimes we make mistakes,” he wrote. “But I also believe in such a situation the final measure of our character is whether we have the insight and courage to humbly and honestly correct them.”
The former RNC chair, who led the committee from 2002 to 2003 before he was tapped as George W. Bush’s reelection campaign chair, has publicly criticized Trump in the past and even announced during the 2020 election cycle that he was voting for Democratic candidate Joe Biden.
“I’ll have disagreements [with Biden], I’m certain,” Racicot said at the time. “But the content of a man’s character or a woman’s character to serve in that capacity is more important than any other issue that I have to consider as a matter of conscience.”
The RNC’s censure, which characterized those who helped Trump fuel the insurrection as “ordinary citizens engaged in legitimate political discourse,” set off a firestorm a little over a week ago even within the GOP itself. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) spoke against the measure last week, asserting that the RNC shouldn’t be “singling out members” and that the Capitol attack was in no uncertain terms a “violent insurrection.”