January 19th, 2010
04:50 PM ET
8 years ago

Steele: RNC worked behind-the-scenes in Massachusetts

Michael Steele is talking up the RNC's efforts in Massachusetts.

Michael Steele is talking up the RNC's efforts in Massachusetts.

Washington (CNN) - The polls haven't closed yet in Massachusetts, but the Republican National Committee distributed a memo to committee members and reporters Tuesday boasting about their under-the-radar efforts to help Scott Brown defeat Martha Coakley in the Senate race.

The memo, written by RNC chairman Michael Steele, asserts that the national party "has been working very diligently behind the scenes" in Massachusetts along with the state Republican Party and the National Republican Senatorial Committee.

Steele said that because Democrats wanted "to make an issue of 'national Republicans" interfering in this race ... we have stayed out of the limelight while supporting the Brown campaign and the Massachusetts Republican Party."

But Steele said the RNC has been on the ground for more than two months, having dispatched staffers to Massachusetts immediately after big GOP wins in the Virginia and New Jersey gubernatorial elections last November, in addition to sending an additional 32 staffers to the Bay State along with busing in 160 volunteers as Election Day approached.

An RNC official would not say how much money the party spent on the race. (UPDATE: Alex Castellanos, a consultant to the RNC, told CNN's Wolf Blitzer that the national party sent roughly $500,000 into Massachusetts, in line with what the National Republican Senatorial Committee spent on the race.)

Steele said that with the help of "innovative" voter identification technology and get-out-the-vote programs implemented by the RNC, almost two million voters were contacted before Tuesday's vote.

Despite the cheerleading, the memo acknowledged that a Brown victory is not yet a certainty.

"Win or lose, Scott Brown has run an excellent campaign, a campaign focused on the great issues of our time, and a campaign that we can all be proud of," Steele wrote.

Story updated at 5:45 p.m. EST with RNC money figure.

Filed under: Martha Coakley • Massachusetts • Michael Steele • RNC • Scott Brown
soundoff (121 Responses)
  1. Pilgrim

    Oh yes! It must be an evil Republican plot if Brown gets elected! It couldn't possibly be because we people who live in Mass have already elected him to public office once and liked what he did well enough to move him up into the big leagues. Oh Woe Is Me! How could we Bay-Staters possibly have known how stoopid we obviously were to elect a guy that the rest of the country doesn't think we should have! -Look-Brown didn't just materialize one day, take the hayseed out of his mouth and drawl "vote fer me fer national office ya dumb rubes"-he actually has a track record here that apparently most of us in ths state approve of. Imagine that! we voted him into state office-had a few years to watch what he did-and we liked it! And guess what? We're voting for him again!

    January 19, 2010 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  2. Jim

    Americans will die under republican public officals – look at the wars. Ma you are killing americans if you vote Brown.

    January 19, 2010 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  3. Democrats Are Too Comfortable - Fire Someone

    The Republican party is good at obfuscating the truth. They outmanuver the Democrats in "branding" ... Remember how the word "Conservative" became a positive and "Liberal" a negative.

    I seems that just like last summer (July & August), they may have spun enough "bumper sticker" simplicity to turn the simple minded people against Ms. Coakley.

    Given the Democrats 2008 much touted advanced technology (Twitter, Facebook, Text messaging, YouTube) edge ... it is unacceptable that the Republicans could mount a "get-out-the-vote" effort anywhere close to making this race competitive.

    Someone (in the DNC) should be fired over this if true. I think it should also put heat on David Axelrod. During the Presidential campaign, along with Plouffe, he was all over stuff like this.

    In the end, this type of inepptitude makes it impossible for President Obama to be the transformation figure he could be and that this nation needs.

    January 19, 2010 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  4. ICARE

    Cant wait for Brown to play basketball with Obie! I am sure it'll be pretty intense...

    January 19, 2010 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  5. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Under the radar, under the table, you say potato I say potatoe. More of the same, Americans WANT MORE OF THE SAME. THIS TIME WE ACTUALLY WANT TO SWIRL DOWN THE TOILET BOWL NOT TEETER ON THE EDGE. We deserve what we get. We have no memory of a year ago when this country almost bottomed out. Now we want to elect more of them to the Senate. Go figure!! Dolts!

    January 19, 2010 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  6. Pedro

    Adorro a la familia Pailian.
    I love the Pailin family. I know they will win in 2012 if she runs.

    January 19, 2010 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  7. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Oh yeah, I almost forgot: stick a potatoe in it Steele!

    January 19, 2010 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  8. Who said the Mayans were wrong?

    Sounds like uncle Mike cant wait to shine his own apple and try to save his job,how cute.Wake up Mike,it wont be long before they throw you under the bus and are done.You could always stand out front of a cigar store.

    January 19, 2010 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  9. Bonnie in Texas

    Isn't the DNC backing his opponent? Why wouldn't the RNC support Brown?

    January 19, 2010 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  10. Speaking for Liberals

    Coakly or whatever her name is DOES NOT DESERVE TO WIN!
    She was a crappy candidate and it is sad that the Dems could not find a better candidate.

    January 19, 2010 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  11. state government

    Hmmm, I don't doubt that the RNC has been involved (both parties have been actively campaigning–Obama, Clinton...), but it seems like a silly idea to publicize it the day of the election.

    Although I wouldn't doubt that the story is media ploy to get more democrats to vote.

    January 19, 2010 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  12. ICARE

    To Pilgrim

    You have a point. We'll see real soon if he stands for the people.

    He better have plans and common sense plans to fight against $300.00 a pill, otherwise, he's just one of those PEANTU-EATING AND FEASTING elephants.

    I just we had more politicians that were willing to do the right thing.

    January 19, 2010 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  13. Obama Victim

    repubs working secretly?? would this be like the dems negoiating health care behind closed doors?? no wait, they were on C-span

    January 19, 2010 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  14. John D.

    This guy has the brains of an ostrich. It is too bad he pulled his head out of the sand to spout this bull. What a real stratagist!

    January 19, 2010 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  15. Franky, Land of Lincoln

    I don't know how much effort they put or how much money they spent but this is a crucial race. Coakley ran a weak campaign, and that's based on reports and assertions made about her. I heard good things about Brown so is no surprise it can be close than expected.

    I don't know mass but I do know how its people think. I do want them to send a message and if Coackley losses, she's gonna look back and see the lil mistakes she made because she thought it was already in the bank. Nothing is a guarantee, especially in politics.

    I want her to lose, I do. I'm getting tired of their liberal and egoistic agenda.

    January 19, 2010 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  16. Sniffit

    "Why is showing off a truck and playing basketball more important for a US Senator than working to reduce the budget deficit and downsize every federal agency?"

    Same reason that calling Shilling a Yankees fan and some dumb techy mispelling Massachusetts in your advertisement merited more news than Coakley's policy positions:


    January 19, 2010 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  17. Steve (the real one)

    Come on CNN! As others have stated the DNC has worked this election too. This is nothing new! A much better question would be "has ACORN worked behind the scenes as well"?

    January 19, 2010 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  18. JMikey54

    It is making me sick.

    January 19, 2010 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  19. Steve (the real one)

    Angi's mom January 19th, 2010 5:02 pm ET

    Watergate was behind the scenes too.
    So is this healthcare bill!

    January 19, 2010 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  20. LacrosseMom(the real one)

    As an Independent-who-leans-Left & campaigned for President Obama, I know that we can not CHANGE EVERYTHING that IS wrong with our Nation in........ ONE year! People need to take a deep breath.

    I am praying that Coakley wins, because we can not afford to have Healthcare demolished. Americans need healthcare, everyone who has healthcare now, can LOSE their healthcare at the whim of Big Insurance.

    So, Massachusetts, we need YOU to go vote and to choose a Democrat again! We can not go back and hand the Congress to the GOPers again...... they did way too much damage!

    January 19, 2010 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  21. tom

    This guy doesn't get it. I ama conservative and I don't like the Republicans either. Let me make one thing clear, this is about getting rid of the idiots of both parties, so don't claim victory for anything.

    January 19, 2010 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  22. RTB

    Easy does it.

    The Chairman is running his mouth a bit ahead of himself.

    Perhaps Mr, Steele could teach Scott Brown how to speak that silly jive-hip-ghetto like vernacular that he believes is the way to get votes.

    January 19, 2010 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  23. Garrett

    Hey Mike Steele...stop trying to cash in on Brown's surge as if you really did something. You're incompetent and there is no way you orchestrated this. Yet, you always seem to show up when something goes right in an effort to take credit. You're a hack!

    January 19, 2010 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  24. RNC = DNC = politics as usual

    I am shocked!!!! RNC had "voter identification technology and get-out-the-vote programs" – horrible.

    Oh wait – that's like ACORN.

    January 19, 2010 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  25. chapin

    I hope dem wins nomore wars we need new ins police

    January 19, 2010 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
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