Republican Party Chairman Tim Rave will not seek another two-year term as the party leader. Rave confirms that he is handing over the reins to somebody else.
His successor will be chosen by party officials, but typically the governor’s choice gets the nod.
Rave had a pretty successful tenure. Start with the Legislature. The party managed to keep a solid hold in both chambers, pretty much duplicating the outcomes of the 2010 election. Most people, including me, were betting that Democrats would pick up a few seats. Didn’t happen.
The party was also successful at defending two Public Utilities Commission seats. Both seats were vulnerable because they were appointed by the governor. One seat in particular, Kristi Fiegen’s, was thought to be particularly vulnerable, but she won with ease.
Then there was the prized race of the cycle: Kristi Noem won her first re-election by a larger margin than most observers thought. She overcame an energetic, though lesser known opponent. Her margin of victory had to be padded some by the GOP’s GOTV effort.
Finally, the state Republican Party maintained a healthy financial position. A chairman’s main responsibility is to raise money for the party, and that continued to happen under Rave.
“I couldn’t have put it in an envelope two years ago and written a better script,” he said.