According to a report at Politico, rank and file House Republicans are in a war with the Trump White House over a new online fundraising initiative that is supposed to funnel small-donor money to their campaigns.
The report states that delayed launch of WinRed program, designed to counter Democratic fundraising, has become a bone of contention over complaints about data-sharing — with incumbents desperate to hold onto their seats in what is expected to be a high-turnout election.
Politico reports, “During a testy exchange on the first day of the House GOP’s annual retreat, members expressed misgivings with WinRed,” and that “Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y) specifically raised concerns about data sharing, while other lawmakers were confused with how the operation works and pressed operatives for more information about the fundraising tool, according to aides and lawmakers who were present.”
GOP lawmakers are concerned with how that data will be protected, expressing concern “that once information is shared with the RNC’s clearinghouse for voter information, Data Trust, other people — including primary opponents — can access it.”
“Trump’s political team and Republican congressional leaders hope WinRed will compete with ActBlue, which has given Democrats’ a massive small-donor money advantage ahead of the 2020 election, and have been putting pressure on rank-and-file members to integrate with the vehicle,” Politico reports. “The RNC has even threatened to withhold support from party candidates who refuse to use WinRed.”
Another concern is over who is profiting by forcing all the members to use WinRed.
“Since launching, WinRed has come under fire from critics who have questioned who stands to profit from the donations it gathers, forcing RNC Chairwoman Ronna Romney McDaniel to defend the platform during a heated meeting with GOP officials,” the report states. “And the RNC, along with the party’s Senate and gubernatorial campaign arms, has threatened legal action against a rival donation vehicle – a move that illustrates how Republican leaders are waging a determined campaign to make WinRed the sole provider of its small donor infrastructure.”
You can read more here.