- The Washington Times - Friday, January 30, 2009


Ken Blackwell and Saul Anuzis have dropped their bids for GOP chairmanship. The field has been narrowed down to two entering the sixth round of voting.

South Carolina Chairman Katon Dawson has jumped into the lead with 62 votes in the race to be the Republican National chairman.

Former Md. Lt. Gov. Michael Steele is in second place with 60 votes. Michigan Chairman Saul Anuzis is in third place with 31 votes, and former Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell still has 15 votes.


Incumbent Robert M. “Mike” Duncan has just dropped out of the race to be the Republican National chairman. He received a standing ovation from everyone.

Former Delaware Republican Chairman Terry Strine, who is not a voting member but is there observing, said he thought former Md. Lt. Gov. Michael Steele would likely pick up Mr. Duncan’s votes in the next ballot.

The second round of balloting of the election for Republican National chairman has the incumbent Robert M. “Mike” Duncan and former Md. Lt. Gov. Michael Steele tied with 48 votes.

The next closest is South Carolina Chairman Katon Dawson’s 29 votes, followed by Michigan Chairman Saul Anuzis with 24 votes. Bringing up the rear is the other black candidate, former Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell, with 19.

Eighty-five out of the 168 votes available are needed to win. It was not expected that the race would be so closely contested.

Mr. Duncan has pulled out all stops in his bid for reelection. Mr. Steele has been the target of “dirty tricks” by anonymous sources, some of which has been rumored to be representing Mr. Duncan.

On Thursday night, members found under their doors a flier that depicted a unfurling roll of toilet paper with the words, “Soft: Good for toilet paper but not for a Republican National Chairman.” It targeted Mr. Steele as being soft on moderates and not really a conservative.

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