The Republican National Committee is feeling confident that an overhaul of its election data program that was made before the 2016 election also will lead the party to success in the 2018 midterm elections, according to The Hill.
"We are pretty confident that we know what the electorate is going to do," said RNC senior adviser Katie Walsh.
"We have the foot to the gas on this and we will keep moving forward to make sure that in '18, we run a better program than we did in '16. And in '20, we run a better program than in '18," she told the Hill.
The president's party historically faces difficulty in the midterm House of Representatives elections, and President Donald Trump's controversies could play into that.
After President Barack Obama was re-elected in 2012, then-RNC Chairman Reince Priebus revamped the Republicans' data program. The party's voter data puts voters into categories, then distributes that information around the party, pointing out which voters Republicans should put their focus on, according to the Hill.
Justin Johnson, the RNC's political director, said the data operations team "is able to tell us down to a specific voter, identify people moving away from us and decide what message we can deliver to them to have an effect."
Sasha Issenberg, an author and campaign data expert, told the Hill that the question remains to be seen whether Trump's win will result in local victories. "The question is, how much, despite Trump's victory and the apparent top-level success about the RNC's data in the campaign … trickles down to a state legislative caucus, to a gubernatorial election in another state, to other races."
Aides for the RNC are confident in the data to predict success in the field by focusing on the voters who supported Trump. "We can identify those people down to the individual and we can work with the political department to develop a plan to re-engage over the next year," Liam O'Rourke, the RNC's deputy chief data officer said.
Both parties' data will be tested in the 2018 midterms. Issenberg pointed out that the key is to make sure local campaigns know how to use the data. "How many people in the party's ecosystem, who are out on the front lines of campaigns next year, are sophisticated users of what the data department in Washington is producing?"
Hillary Clinton criticized the Democratic National Committee's data operation in a Wednesday interview. The Republican Party noted her statement in a tweet.
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