Lee Zeldin is big reason why Republicans won a House majority in an election that largely disappointed the GOP nationwide, as his coattails helped the party take four seats from the Democrats and retain an open seat in a district Joe Biden carried by nine points just two years ago. He’s a natural to be the next chairman of the Republican National Committee.
He understands how to campaign, and the essentials of fighting on all fronts — including a robust early-voting effort, something that all too many local Republicans rejected merely because Donald Trump doesn’t like it. (Which is crazy: Even if you oppose early voting in principle, not getting your people out when the Dems are doing it is just electoral suicide.)
While Zeldin didn’t quite pull off a win in deep-blue New York, he came closer than any GOP gov candidate has in decades. He also beat a Democratic incumbent to win his own House seat back in 2014, and fought several tough campaigns to keep it.
He’s a mainstream-conservative Republican who should be acceptable to every wing of the party — and he has a record of not wasting money on overpriced consultants.
None of which is to dump on incumbent RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel, except that the party hasn’t exactly flourished under her leadership; it just got slammed in her home state of Michigan.
The party could use a good national spokesman, where McDaniel’s been almost invisible. Zeldin has plenty of experience dealing with hostile liberal media.
Bottom line, though: The RNC’s job is helping GOP candidates win; only Florida’s Ron DeSantis did nearly as well as Zeldin at that this year, and he’s likely got another next job in mind. The New Yorker is Republicans’ best bet.