Tthe Republican National Committee (RNC), under the stewardship of Ronna McDaniel, has been exposed for its extravagant spending habits. A bombshell report has unveiled that the RNC has splurged millions on private jets, limousines, luxury entertainment, and more.
As the RNC reportedly seeks a new credit line to navigate out of a financial quagmire, the details of its spending over the past five years have come to light, painting a picture of extravagance that seems at odds with the party’s message of fiscal conservatism.
Late last week, RedState received a report from October 7, 2022, reviewing the RNC’s spending for 2021-2022. The report outlined expenditures exceeding $500,000 on private jet services, $64,000 at clothing stores, and $321,000 on floral arrangements.
The report outlined an eye-watering $3.1 million on private jet services, $1.3 million on limousine and chauffeur services, and a staggering $17.1 million on donor mementos.
But the spending spree doesn’t stop there. The RNC also forked out $750,000 on floral arrangements, $80,000 on alcohol-related expenditures, and $400,000 on luxury entertainment, showcasing a penchant for lavishness that has left many party supporters and the general public in disbelief.
The revelations are particularly damning when considering these expenditures came during the 2022 election cycle, a period marked by a disappointing midterm.
RedState spoke with current vendors, state party officials familiar with the workings, former staffers (some from McDaniel’s tenure, and some who worked for prior chairs), and several current RNC members to verify numbers and dates. Most were only willing to discuss the matters on background, and all were promised anonymity to avoid potential retaliation.
It is difficult to accurately categorize all of the expenditures because a significant number of transactions seem to be misclassified. For example, nearly $5,000 spent in 2022 at Lululemon, a luxury athletic apparel brand, was classified as “office expense,” as were two expenditures totaling $9,300 at Madison Square Garden in 2017.
Nearly $400,000 has been spent on event tickets and other entertainment activities, including $30,000 for a private box at a Las Vegas Raiders game, $13,000 for Broadway shows, $9,400 at Madison Square Garden, and $43,000 at Top Golf locations in Texas, Nevada, Virginia, and Maryland.
According to a senior staffer, the private box Raiders game was part of a retreat for senior staff members. RNC funds were also used to fly the senior staffers and their plus-ones first-class to Las Vegas, and for their hotel rooms, food, and alcohol, the staffer says.
Senior staff retreats were also held at the Salamander Resort & Spa in Virginia in 2021 and 2022, according to another staffer. A national committee member says that at the 2021 retreat, held from March 19-21, 30 senior staffers and their families attended, and the RNC paid for Katie Walsh and Mike Shields to speak to the group. FEC reporting shows that the RNC paid $260,000 to the resort in 2021 and 2022, classified as travel expenses and venue rental and catering.
McDaniel, who serves as the Chairwoman of the RNC, has been the subject of considerable critique from members of her own party, especially in the wake of less-than-stellar results in recent elections. Detractors claim that under McDaniel’s stewardship, the party has not achieved the electoral successes it had hoped for.
Notable party figures, including former Republican presidential hopeful Vivek Ramaswamy and Arkansas Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders, have expressed their discontent openly. Ramaswamy has even initiated a campaign for McDaniel’s removal, blaming her for the party’s electoral defeats and its inability to appeal to younger voters.
Nonetheless, McDaniel secured re-election for a fourth term, despite opposition to her continuation in the role from some state-level Republican organizations.