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REPORT: Romney Niece McDaniel Expected to Be Trump’s Pick for RNC Chair with Priebus Support

Just four years after entering politics working on her uncle Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign, Ronna Romney McDaniel is expected to become President-elect Donald Trump’s choice for next chairman of the RNC.

Rumors and support from current Republican National Committee (RNC) Chairman Reince Priebus point to McDaniel, current head of the Michigan Republican Party, as the frontrunner to replace Priebus, who has been named President-elect Donald Trump’s Chief of Staff.

The Hill cited two sources with “direct knowledge” of the decision process who said she will be the next head of the RNC unless Trump decides to make a last-minute change. The PEOTUS has said of his cabinet appointments that only he “knows who the finalists are.” Also cited were two sources familiar with Priebus’ thinking that said McDaniel is his favored choice to replace him in the RNC. The outlet reported from one source that Priebus wants someone “that he trusts and who knows their way around the committee.”

McDaniel entered the political realm in 2012 working on Mitt Romney’s failed presidential campaign, according to the Detroit Free Press. Quickly thereafter she was chosen as just one two people that represent Michigan on the RNC in 2014. By 2015 she was made chairman of the Michigan Republican Party.

Nick Ayers has also been named as a top contender according to The Hill. Ayers is seen as more independent from the committee, but also serves as a senior aide to Vice President-elect Mike Pence. He is also a GOP strategist and once served as executive director of the Republican Governors Association.

At Donald Trump’s Friday night Thank You Tour stop in Grand Rapids, Michigan, he lauded McDaniel for helping him flip the blue wall state for a Trump win, according to the Free Press. Trump won the state with just over 10,000 votes.

“They said a Republican could never win Michigan, but I knew better, you knew better and Donald Trump knew better. Never underestimate Michigan. This victory was a movement and message that Americans are tired of being left behind,” McDaniel told the crowd, according to the local news report.

Trump did not, however, confirm Romney McDaniel’s selection as the choice for RNC Chairman during the Michigan rally.

Ultimately the choice belongs to the RNC’s 168 members, and the next RNC Chairman will need the votes of at least 85 of those to win according to a 2011 Fox News report on contention over whether Priebus would secure election at the time. It has been suggested that whomever Trump pegs as his choice will have an easy time securing the position.

Pence has supported Ayers for the position, reports The Hill. The Free Press reported that Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette and the Republican Committee of the Virgin Islands have each publicly announced support for McDaniel.

Follow Michelle Moons on Twitter @MichelleDiana 

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