Texas Sen. John Cornyn, the incoming Republican whip who led his party’s Senate campaign effort this year, makes no bones about the fact that Republicans squandered a great chance to take back control of the upper chamber.
Cornyn was elected minority whip Wednesday, making him the No. 2 Republican Senate leader behind Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. Cornyn headed the National Republican Senatorial Committee during the last two election cycles.
As for the just-finished cycle, Republican candidates were inadequate, communications were inadequate, and so was polling, he told Politico
. The party obviously had a problem attracting women, minorities, and unhappy voters, which will have to change quickly to avoid more election losses in 2014.
“How can we convey what I believe is the true image, that Republicans actually do care about people of all races, ethnicities, and classes in America?” Cornyn said.
Party leaders are thinking of reversing the laissez-faire approach they took to Senate primaries this year, which ended up producing several candidates who couldn’t attract moderate support. But when Senate leaders voiced support for candidates in 2010, the grassroots showed its displeasure, voting for tea party candidates instead.
“I think the goal is to elect principled conservatives in November, not just nominate somebody in the primary that has very little chance of getting elected in November,” Cornyn said.
At their conference meeting Wednesday, several Republican senators said Democrats have bested them in the use of social media, The Hill reports. “I think the Democratic Party has really learned how to effectively use social media to reach specific groups,” said Indiana Sen. Dan Coats. “We made a zillion phone calls. I’m not sure phone calls are the way to go when the kids are texting instead of answering the phone at home.”
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