NRCC names new comms director

WASHINGTON: The National Republican Congressional Committee has tapped a new communications director, veteran campaigner Steve Schmidt, to oversee the communications programs needed to defend its perilous five-seat majority in the upcoming 2002 elections. He succeeds Jim Wilkinson who recently moved from Capitol Hill to Pennsylvania Avenue.

WASHINGTON: The National Republican Congressional Committee has tapped a new communications director, veteran campaigner Steve Schmidt, to oversee the communications programs needed to defend its perilous five-seat majority in the upcoming 2002 elections. He succeeds Jim Wilkinson who recently moved from Capitol Hill to Pennsylvania Avenue.

WASHINGTON: The National Republican Congressional Committee has tapped a new communications director, veteran campaigner Steve Schmidt, to oversee the communications programs needed to defend its perilous five-seat majority in the upcoming 2002 elections. He succeeds Jim Wilkinson who recently moved from Capitol Hill to Pennsylvania Avenue.

Schmidt most recently served as communications director for the House Commerce Committee and previously served as communications director for the 2000 presidential campaign of former Tennessee governor Lamar Alexander (RTN).

This year will require a different communications strategy given that Bush is in the White House and, if history serves as precedent, the party in power should lose congressional seats in the coming midterm election.

Schmidt has already started pitching an alternative view, arguing that 'infighting' among the Democratic wings will 'inhibit' a unified message in 2002.

Meanwhile, Wilkinson is now White House deputy communications director overseeing planning and reporting to veteran Bush communications operatives, counselor Karen Hughes and her deputy Dan Bartlett.





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