Missouri Republican Party ‘refocusing’ structure on grassroots, voter contact

  

The Missouri Republican Party is rolling out a “streamlined” business model aimed are refocusing its resources on grassroots development and voter contacts.

Announced at the state committee meeting Saturday, the changes were spurred by two major factors: an initiative at the national party level and a tornado that decimated its headquarters.

Getting “basically kicked out of” the office due to the tornado that swept through Jefferson City in May resulted in Executive Director Jean Evans and Chairwoman Kay Hoflander getting together to reassess. With a temporary headquarters in Jefferson City through the end of the year, they decided it would be best not to look for a permanent place and save those resources to spend on 2020 victory efforts.

Overview of the damage to the Missouri Republican Party (PROVIDED/JEAN EVANS).

“Some people may look at it as a loss to not have the office anymore, but we are looking at it as an opportunity to streamline our business operations and have a greater impact at the grassroots level,” Evans told The Missouri Times.

The Missouri Republican Party will continue fulfilling its “constitutional responsibilities,” which includes the state caucus, selection of GOP delegates, and attending the National Republican Committee Convention. The state party is also responsible for turning out Republican voters.

“I would say we are refocusing,” Evans said. “We are streamlining our business and cutting our overhead to focus our resources more on grassroots development and voter contacts.”

Project GROW: Growing Republican Organizations to Win

In January 2019, the National Republican Party (NRC) unveiled Project GROW: Growing Republican Organizations to Win — and the Missouri Republican Party is joining the program.

“The RNC is offering our resources and assistance to help state parties win the election. This goes way beyond fundraising,” Ronna McDaniel, RNC president, said during a speech in January.

The program focuses on the nuts and bolts of the party with the aim of winning elections from the ground up.

Any state party can participate in the program, which covers volunteer training, voter contact and registration, and more. Those in the program are required to meet performance metrics — adapted to the political conditions of each state — and will get addition national resources as goals are met.

“We are working with the RNC and the Trump team on the GROW program; we are building from the ground up in county committees throughout the state,” said Evans

Grassroots and voter contacts

The refocusing of the Missouri Republican Party is designed to make development and voter contacts the focal point of efforts — with staffers spending more time on the ground as opposed to being based in a physical office in the capital city.

“The Missouri Republican Party is really the voters — the people in every county across the state who attend meetings, put up yard signs, and vote for candidates. That is who the Missouri Republican Party is … we are focusing our efforts on reaching out to them and empowering them to have a greater voice in government,” said Evans. “So you’ll see us doing more of a focused effort on our grassroots and out voters — having more direct contact with them through personal meetings, events, and digital communications.”