In response to Dole, Priebus declares RNC 'open for repairs'
June 2nd, 2013
04:16 PM ET
10 years ago

In response to Dole, Priebus declares RNC 'open for repairs'

(CNN) - Responding to criticism from Sen. Bob Dole, Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus bluntly stated Sunday that the GOP is in fact "open for repairs."

Last week the 1996 Republican presidential nominee said his party has changed so much in the past decade that even former President Ronald Reagan wouldn't find a place in it.

Instead of operating daily in a nonelection year, the national party should focus on broader plans to rehabilitate itself after the losses of 2012, Dole said.

“I think they ought to put a sign on the national committee doors that says ‘Closed for repairs’ until New Year’s Day next year. Spend that time going over ideas and positive agendas,” the former Kansas lawmaker said on “Fox News Sunday.”

Appearing on the same program Sunday, the party's chief praised Dole as a hero but argued the party has nominated two men – Arizona Sen. John McCain and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney - who paint a different picture than "what Mr. Dole had to say. "

Priebus also pointed to the RNC's months-long review after losing the November election and its efforts to change the party's messaging strategy to reach a broader range of voters.

'We basically went around the country, we talked to 52,000 people, we have a serious project that we're working on, we unveiled it," Priebus said. "And I would say we're not closed for repairs, but open for repairs."

Priebus argued the party hasn't "decisively won" a presidential race in 24 years.

"This is not something that suddenly happened, but it is something that the national party and Republican Party, et al., have to address, which we did," he added, referring to the RNC review.

- CNN's Ashley Killough and Kevin Liptak contributed to this report.

Filed under: Reince Priebus • RNC
soundoff (298 Responses)
  1. D

    Ha! "open" for repairs. *rimshot*
    Like they'd take any constructive criticism that conflicted with their ideology.

    June 2, 2013 09:10 pm at 9:10 pm |
  2. Raj47

    GOPers can not win presidential elections. As long as their platform is exclusive, they throw roadblocks to president's governance, they remain party of NO, how can anyone vote for the They harassed Prez Clinton and now they continue to do the same to Prez Obama How can ANYONE vote for a party that is so ANTI NATION. They do not want to do what is good for America, which is let the prez govern. They want their way even when they were resoundingly defeated in national elections. Shame on GOPers.

    June 2, 2013 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  3. Harold Hervey

    There is no point in the GOP even existing as a Party if it starts to act like liberal Democrats. Unless Republicans hold fast on the few remaining conservative principles they still have (Balanced budget, traditional marriage, reducing debt and spending), then there is no reason for them to considered for the future. But true conservatives will migrate to the Conservative Party USA.

    June 2, 2013 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  4. Craig

    Step 1: stop violating every tenet of the Republican platform.
    Step 2: purge the diabolically insane from the party
    Step 3: formally apologize for 8 years of W.

    June 2, 2013 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  5. Iamnotfooled

    Closed for repairs , Stop being the Party of Stupid , Autopsy, DEAD , these are the accurate quotes.

    June 2, 2013 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
  6. Complete ignorance

    A more accurate sign would be "out of business".

    June 2, 2013 09:18 pm at 9:18 pm |
  7. Larry L

    "Appearing on the same program Sunday, the party's chief praised Dole as a hero but argued the party has nominated two men – Arizona Sen. John McCain and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney – who paint a different picture than "what Mr. Dole had to say. "
    Placing McCain and Romney above Senator Dole proves the point. Dole is a Statesman who cared about all Americans. McCain is a bitter old man who desperately works to get America into another war. Romney is a drone for the filthy rich who despises the working class. Republicans still don't get the message!

    June 2, 2013 09:18 pm at 9:18 pm |
  8. nytw

    RINO trash like Bob Dole is who stoled the GOP from WE, THE PEOPLE, in the first place. We need real conservatives to step up and lead our party not more RINO garbage like Bob Dp;e/

    June 2, 2013 09:19 pm at 9:19 pm |
  9. Odo

    Really? How about supporting equal pay and bodily autonomy for women...then I'll think about it.

    June 2, 2013 09:20 pm at 9:20 pm |
  10. danielwalldammit

    The GOP caters to their pseudo-conservative base. If and when 'conservative' stops meaning 'childish bigot' maybe those adhering to that label can play a constructive role in American politics. As it stands, they are little else than the audience for a circus side-show featuring the likes of Palin, Bachman, and a host of talking heads.

    June 2, 2013 09:22 pm at 9:22 pm |
  11. Jup June

    Rience & the GOP, it will take only 2 changes to turn things around: 1. Be nice and 2. Be honest. If you can make these changes, I will take a close look at changing my party.

    June 2, 2013 09:23 pm at 9:23 pm |
  12. bewhiskered

    Poor GOP, sold out tot the fringe
    Now it's freedom upon which they impinge
    No more choice, no more science
    No more thought, no noncompliance
    It's enough to make a decent person cringe.

    June 2, 2013 09:24 pm at 9:24 pm |
  13. truthteller

    When it's beyond repair you condemn it

    June 2, 2013 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  14. Sven

    The Republican Party needs to join the 21st century, stop pandering to the Christian-supremacists, stop with the brazen lies and fear campaigns, and adopt a more libertarian platform. Start walking the talk.

    June 2, 2013 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  15. Smarterestest Human

    Yaaawn! They are the party of 1950's ideas. R.I.P. G.O.P

    June 2, 2013 09:30 pm at 9:30 pm |
  16. erniepf

    Hah! The Repuds cannot fix this. The party has been broken since the teabaggers infiltrated the ranks. This party has become one enormous joke.

    June 2, 2013 09:31 pm at 9:31 pm |
  17. JohnK

    You ought to start by legislating what America wants; a fair and balanced tax code that removes corporate welfare, an economic engine started with spending on infrastructure which will create construction jobs, making education affordable so our future workers and entrepreneurs are skilled, supporting universal health care and a public option which will drive profit and greed out of the health care industry and focus more on delivery, and last but not least end the continual drama and one ups man ship that only serves to delay positive movement in legislation to move this country forward. Fail to deliver on this and the GOP will eventually rot from within by a minority interest that is undermining the party of Lincoln.

    June 2, 2013 09:31 pm at 9:31 pm |
  18. Realist76

    We've heard this before in 08', and again in 10', and yet again in 12'. GOP policies have either failed or harmed us for the past 70 years and it's getting worse. The only thing that GOP voters and politicians have in common is that they hate the democrats. A new party is on the way folks.

    June 2, 2013 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  19. fiscaltiger

    this is a funny story:)

    the gop is not prepared to make changes to win in america. that would require they stop placing the rich and israel ahead of america

    June 2, 2013 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  20. Jason

    The appropriate quote should be " Gop ready for the cremation (please donot bury it as it will come back as a zombie). looking at how inhuman these neocons are, even purgatory would spit them out

    June 2, 2013 09:34 pm at 9:34 pm |
  21. sunnyjim

    to fix the GOP you would have to flush all these loony tunes and hopefully you could get back at least to the Reagan and doles. but that isn't gonna happen. extinction is the only thing that will make them see it now. the sooner the better for the people of this country and the rest of the world

    June 2, 2013 09:35 pm at 9:35 pm |
  22. Marshal Right

    I like how CNN reports the HELL out of this, but not a WORD about the IRS targeting the Tea Party. Not a word about Obama's criminal activities regarding Benghazi. Only things that make the right look bad. Well, that has been noted and it WILL be used.

    June 2, 2013 09:35 pm at 9:35 pm |
  23. Joe

    RINO's are a joke. They are nothing but moderate progressives that are determined to hold on to personal wealth while abandoning everyone else.

    June 2, 2013 09:36 pm at 9:36 pm |
  24. FlaEMT

    The repairs are simple if the GOP wishes to implement them.

    1. Concentrate on fiscal responsibility and stop trying to control peoples' lives. (abortion, gay marriage, etc.)
    2. From this point forward, consistently and unequivocally refuse to associate with birthers and other fringe groups, to the point of actively kicking them from the party.
    3. Admit that compromise is the way to get things done in a nation with as wide of a variety of views as this nation has.
    4. Stop treating "Moderate" like a dirty word.

    I can guarantee that if the Republican party does these things, more than enough moderates like myself will come (back) to the Party and compensate for the far right freaks that leave or get kicked out. In fact, enough of us will come (back) over to more than win the next election.

    June 2, 2013 09:36 pm at 9:36 pm |
  25. getalife

    Lets close the gop for good and all you have to do is show up and vote against the gop in 14.

    June 2, 2013 09:36 pm at 9:36 pm |
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