October 13th, 2009
05:15 PM ET
12 years ago

With a few stumbles out of the gate, RNC launches revamped site

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/10/13/art.gopsite1013.gop.jpg caption="The RNC relaunched GOP.com Tuesday."]
WASHINGTON (CNN) - The Republican National Committee debuted its newly redesigned online portal GOP.com Tuesday - but not without a few technical headaches, including some that left the site completely unavailable for parts of the day.

“Due to a high volume of web traffic, our new website experienced a few technical difficulties, but we are working out the glitches to bring it back to full working order,” the RNC's Director of Media Affairs LeRoy Coleman said in an e-mail to CNN.

The new version of GOP.com, which prominently features images of women and ethnic and racial minorities, plugs the party's involvement in social networking sites. A section on the homepage allows users to see posts on the GOP's Facebook page, where roughly 93,000 people have connected with the RNC. From the new site, users can also view the RNC's Twitter feed along with YouTube videos and a flickr slideshow.

The party says new site will also act as a Web platform that will play host to applications which the party is encouraging conservative online activists to build for the site. It also hosts eight new blogs, including a blog written by Steele, entitled "What up?"

"The Internet has been around for awhile, now," Steele writes in his first blog post on the revamped site. "Today, I want to begin to better connect with Republicans everywhere."

But not all Republicans are happy with the new approach, as the site faced some early criticism from conservatives. A blog post on the conservative portal townhall.com called GOP.com a "(Red) Hot Mess" and "downright embarrassing."

"Playing into all the medias' favorite stereotype, the RNC seems so desperate to avoid being labeled the party of 'old, white men,'" writes conservative Meredith Jessup.

"After sitting and clicking for a while, it becomes embarrassingly apparent how the RNC is seemingly desperate for female and minority voters. Instead of showing pictures of all different kinds of people, the RNC has singled-out these people and, more specifically, their votes - a petty political maneuver and one of many reasons disillusioned Republicans are so fed up with the party in the first place."

The Democratic National Committee almost immediately took gleeful note of the round of glitches that plagued the site today, including the inadvertant posting of password and administrative instructions on some areas of the site; the apparent absence of content in several sections, including the "Future Leaders" page; and failure of Web pages on the site to load. At times, GOP.com was completely unavailable for access.

Steele shot back in defense of the site. "It's a beta site, meaning that there - we're working out a lot of the kinks and the bugs," he told Fox News. "So the Dems can have their fun. Go play with it, have some fun with it. ...But the reality - but the reality of it is, it is a new tool to communicate the new GOP."

Filed under: GOP • RNC • Social Media • Social Networking
soundoff (54 Responses)
  1. Stu - Las Vegas

    I just looked at the GOP website. YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME!

    A fifth grader can build a website better than that. AND YOU CLOWNS WANT TO RUN THIS COUNTRY..........NOT!

    October 13, 2009 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  2. Peter s

    oops! do they ever get anything right????

    October 13, 2009 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  3. Patti

    Oh my God. What an obvious pander.
    Epic FAIL.

    October 13, 2009 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  4. Liberal4Obama

    Wow it looks even worst than the CarlyforniaDreamin mess from Carly Fiorina.

    October 13, 2009 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
  5. Mitch

    What up???? Um......certainly not your chances at the polls. Watching Steele act hip hop is like watching GWB look compassionate. Nobody is or has bought into it.

    The GOP can't cover it's deep problems with a gimmicky website. You can't paint over crumbling walls and call it a new home.

    October 13, 2009 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
  6. suzyku

    Unless they revamp their entire attitude and the members of their party, who cares! Useless bunch of wingnuts!

    October 13, 2009 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  7. inofritzn

    I try to stay in the middle, but you libs really get under my skin when you cherry-pick events to support your arguments, while ignoring the events that debunk your arguments. Both sides are bad, but the libs on here are evil without justification. Grow up please

    October 13, 2009 06:35 pm at 6:35 pm |
  8. mac from Texas

    I think it is a good idea. Maybe this will help to separate real Republicans from those right wing nuts that spout hate. Those people are not representative of the Republican Party. It is about time that we started to get organized and find some leadership in a way that puts our party forward in a positive way instead of just trashing the opposition.

    October 13, 2009 07:07 pm at 7:07 pm |
  9. Larry

    Trouble due to a "High Volume of Traffic"


    They probably only "thought" it was broken because there was NO traffic

    Who gives a HOOT about a Fox news takeoff site ...

    More lies and twisted truths ...

    October 13, 2009 07:07 pm at 7:07 pm |
  10. Keeth in California

    A black man as the face of the new GOP?!? They're joking, right?

    October 13, 2009 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  11. Ralph Wiggum

    Behold the folly of our two party system.

    The Republicans overreached and overspent and were ushered out.

    Now the Dems are overspending and overreaching and the Republicans will come to the "rescue" and make all the same mistakes that they made before.

    The fact that we all accept this Pepsi vs Coke political system is very sad.

    October 13, 2009 07:17 pm at 7:17 pm |
  12. Erin

    I miss the GOPers when I don't hear from them in awhile. They entertained me all summer with their teabagging and town hall craziness, their birther movement and their general warfare against socialism, Communism and all the rest of the scary isms! It's nice to know they haven't given up on the tinfoil hat movement!

    October 13, 2009 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  13. GI Joe

    What Up???

    To whom is this right-wing nutjob speaking?

    That is NOT proper English. Geeeeez.

    Proud of him Republicans? You picked him.

    October 13, 2009 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  14. I am Newt's ex wife

    What up????? I tell what up.....GOP is the biggest bunch of whiners I have ever seen. Obama has been in office 9 months and you would think that he caused all the economic woes and troubles we have. The GOP is full of hypocrites and "godly" folks who say one thing and "do" another.

    Another 8 yrs of another W and I can see the end of the US as we know it

    October 13, 2009 07:24 pm at 7:24 pm |
  15. C. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    What ! The RNC need to redesign a leader because they don't have one in Michael Steele who always "stumbles out the gate".

    October 13, 2009 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |
  16. m smith

    Thank God our President has more class than to have a web site called What up. How degrading . Not all black people speak that way. This pandering to blacks and minoritys is an insult. You are the party of fat ol white guys. !!!!

    October 13, 2009 08:38 pm at 8:38 pm |
  17. Anne

    WHAT UP?...Seriously, WHAT UP? Okay, Steele, we get it. You're sooo with it.

    October 13, 2009 08:40 pm at 8:40 pm |
  18. gl, Pittsburgh

    The party says new site will also act as a Web platform that will play host to applications which the party is encouraging conservative online activists to build for the site. It also hosts eight new blogs, including a blog written by Steele, entitled "What up?"

    Steele is the black male verious of Sara Palin. Stupid and a joker.

    October 13, 2009 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  19. Mark in CA

    So they finally figured out what that strange box with the little tv screen on their desk actually does, Hmmm! Anyone can cut and past alot of pretty pictures on a web site, doesn't mean they actually believe it.
    Steele is nothing more than a tool without a clue. I try to keep an open mind when I listen to Steele but his attacks on democrats and defense of republican ideoligy is weak, tastless and without any intelligent thought what so ever. Then like a fool he thinbks he's kool with the teens. Get Down!! I think I'm going to barf.

    October 13, 2009 08:52 pm at 8:52 pm |
  20. EJ in Texas

    if the GOP wants to reach out and become more diverse they are going to have to do more than show pictures of black people on a website. And Mike Steele being there doesn't help anymore either. In fact after some of the things he and Alan Keyes have said about President Obama I doubt if they would be welcome into too many black communities. The far right wing of this party is run by the folks that wear teabags on their heads and listen to Rush, Glenn, Sean and FoxNews and I doubt if they really care if the party becomes more diverse or not.

    October 13, 2009 09:04 pm at 9:04 pm |
  21. wg

    Who cares there irrelevant anyway....always crying about something.

    October 13, 2009 09:06 pm at 9:06 pm |
  22. Carl Justus

    The republicans have only two goals. To keep cutting taxes so there are none and then how will they pay for all the military they think we need. The other goal is let the rich make the poor beg for food or sell themselves into slavery to live.

    The republicans do not have to worry they will be taken care of by the rich who are now filling their pockets for no taxes, special consideration for they want and desire.

    The republicans do not realize when they give all to the rich they will be in the same line as the rest of us begging to give our all to some rich person so we can eat and sleep a little bit under their trees or maybe a barn or shack.

    October 13, 2009 09:08 pm at 9:08 pm |
  23. not alone

    Web address should be hate-your-fellow-American.com.It's all they seem to be able to do to us hard working americans other then say no or sell everything in America to foriegh nations.Least thats the only thing they have to show for the last 3 presidents they had in office.Think america has finially seen the true colors of the repulican party and maybie it's time for a new for America party.
    Least we forget it was a Repulican congress and senate that passed NAFTA that BIll Clinton sighen into law as well as fast track trade athority,also was Repulican congress and senate that passed LAFTA and free trade with China that Bush sighned in to law. So what side are the Replicans really on?Obvoisly not America.

    October 13, 2009 09:08 pm at 9:08 pm |
  24. Buddy Gilmour

    The cognitive dissonance of the GOP is now, well, deafening 😉 First they pursue a "southern strategy" of sly appeals to southern white's baser (sic) instincts. That works and gets them multiple presidencies. But recently that strategy has become a losing proposition and so now they want to siphon some minority support away from the Dems. Thats going to be tough sell with Rush, Joe, and company always kicking mud on our President. And it shows the GOP's total disdain for the common man, who they view as a mindless pawn who can be easily swayed.

    October 13, 2009 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  25. Jeff

    A new RNC website...that's my big laugh of the day. I think I call it the Paranormal Activity website...scares the you know what out of me. Danger, danger.

    October 13, 2009 09:34 pm at 9:34 pm |
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