Sharon Day, RNC co-chairman with Aaron Lawlor, Chairman of the Lake County Board

By Nancy Thorner – 

LIBERTYVILLE – Sharon Day, co-chairman of the Republican National Committee, often speaks on behalf of the RNC “to get the Republican message out,” she said Wednesday. While she is usually asked to speak at political events, she hesitated to talk politics at Republican Bob Dold’s 10th CD campaign headquarters.

Ms. Day played an instrumental part in the recount in Florida in 2000 in the election of Al Gore and George W. Bush. After the 2000 election, she says the RNC knew that the way it was doing business had to change. Dealing only with eight battleground states was a losing issue. 

Because of this policy the “farm team” was being lost in every state, specifically those candidates that gain experience making up school boards and county commissions. The Republican Party had to become a party of 50 states and go to places where it had never been before – such as to minority communities and college campuses. 

As related by Ms. Day, the Republican Party has the “right message,” but it fails in widely disbursing that message. The Republican Party had allowed the Democratic Party to far outpace it in technology. To counter this advantage, the RNC recently spent $10 million on technology, such as up-to-date computers like the ones in Bob Dold’s office. The new “high tech tools” were purchased by the RNC to use in the 10th CD. The RNC’s goal is to have more computers across Lake County (where Dold’s office is located) and throughout Illinois. The RNC wants to make every one of the state parties strong by providing similar tools to win elections. 

Such technology as provided by the RNC helped David Jolly defeat Alex Sink in a special race in Florida and Kevin Faulconer to win over David Alvarez as mayor of San Diego.  Ms. Day remarked: “Why be a candidate if you get no support from your state party?” 

Tony Esposito has been assigned to Illinois by the RNC to be the Political Director of the Illinois Republican Party. In his job he appears with candidates at political events and was at the Dold’s event featuring Ms. Day on Wednesday. Esposito took charge of the event and was competent in doing so, although the candidate Bob Dold didn’t appear.

The campaign of Bob Dold is crucial to the RNC because he is trying to reclaim the House seat he lost in 2012 to Rep. Brad Schneider.  The 10th CD seat is also a high priority to the Democrat Party. Neither party wants to lose and will be pulling out all the stops to win come November.

For this reason, Day said, the Dold event caught the attention of the RNC that was already in Chicago for its convention. Accordingly, Day was sent to the Dold headquarters to get the RNC message out to its campaign workers and to other Republican politicians on hand. 

When asked how the RNC intends to reach out to conservatives in Illinois, Ms. Day’s commented, “The RNC will partner to supply the tools to win elections, but it doesn’t involve itself with politics.”

The RNC is gathering Thursday and Friday at downtown Chicago’s Westin Hotel.