President-Elect Donald Trump has announced his support for Ronna Romney McDaniel as the next head of the Republican National Committee.
This RNC position is currently held by Reince Priebus, who will become Trump’s chief of staff in January 2017. As chairperson of the organization, Romney McDaniel will be responsible for organizing the Republican party’s fundraising and election strategy.
“I’m excited to have a highly effective leader in Ronna McDaniel as RNC Deputy Chair and I look forward to her serving as the Party’s Chairman in 2017,” Trump said in a statement today. “Ronna has been extremely loyal to our movement and her efforts were critical to our tremendous victory in Michigan, and I know she will bring the same passion to the Republican National Committee.”
Romney McDaniel does not automatically assume the role, and she must be elected to it by members of the RNC in January. But it is expected that Romney McDaniel will ascend to the position without any issues.
Here’s everything you need to know about Ronna Romney McDaniel, the likely next chair of the Republican National Committee.
1. She Is Mitt Romney’s Niece
Romney McDaniel is the niece of former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, who was recently passed over by Trump for the position of Secretary of State.
Her father is Scott Romney, an attorney and brother of Mitt Romney. Her mother is Ronna Romney, a radio talk show host and former member of the Republican National Committee. Ronna and Scott Romney are now divorced.
Romney McDaniel is the third of five children that Scott Romney and Ronna Romney had together. She is married to Patrick McDaniel, and she has two children, Abigail and Nash. The family currently resides in Northville, Michigan.
2. She Studied English at Brigham Young University
After attending Lahser High School in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, Romney McDaniel attended Brigham Young University, a Mormon school located in Provo, Utah. She graduated with a B.A. in English.
Romney McDaniel did not immediately get into politics, though. Instead, she was a business manager for Mills James Productions, a company that produces political advertisements. In addition, she has worked as a production manager for SRCP Media, another organization that produces political ads, according to the Detroit Free Press.
Outside of the world of political advertising, Romney McDaniel has worked as a manager at Ajilon, a staffing firm.
She did get a taste of politics in 1994, though, when she helped out on her mother’s Senate campaign.
3. She Began Her Political Career During the 2012 Election
Ronna Romney McDaniel has only been working in politics for four years now, getting her start in 2012 on her uncle Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign. She was the chair of the Women for Mitt Michigan Coalition, and she was also a delegate at the Republican National Convention.
In 2013, Romney McDaniel continued on with the world of politics by becoming chair Mackinac Republican Leadership Conference, a conference for Michigan Republicans held every other year on Mackinac Island.
Then, in 2014, Romney McDaniel ran for the position of Michigan Republican Party chair, and she ended up winning with 55 percent of the vote. This is Romney McDaniel’s current position.
“Ronna Romney McDaniel has been a grassroots conservative activist her entire life,” the Michigan Republican Party says on its website. “[She] is widely recognized across the country as one of the premier communicators of the conservative, Republican message.”
4. She Helped Win Michigan For Donald Trump, Who Her Uncle Called a ‘Phony’ and a ‘Fraud’
Ronna Romney McDaniel and her uncle Mitt Romney clearly have some major disagreements when it comes to Donald Trump. Although Mitt Romney has called Donald Trump a “phony” and a “fraud,” Romney McDaniel supported Trump during the presidential campaign and helped him to become the first Republican to win Michigan in 28 years.
Romney McDaniel says that she and her uncle both understand one another’s position on this.
“I love my uncle Mitt and I’m so proud of him” Romney McDaniel told the Detroit Free Press in July. “We disagree on this issue, but it doesn’t change the fact that he’s a remarkable man and would have been a great president. But right now it’s Donald Trump’s turn, and I’m supporting the nominee.”
Romney McDaniel spoke prior to President-Elect Donald Trump taking the stage at a recent “thank you” rally in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
“They said a Republican could never win Michigan, but I knew better, you knew better, and Donald Trump knew better,” she said. “…This victory was a movement and message that Americans are tired of being left behind.”
Trump himself gave Romney McDaniel a shout out, saying that he was very impressed with her efforts.
5. She Helped to Stop the Michigan Recount
On December 7th, a recount of the presidential election result in Michigan was halted after the Michigan’s Board of Elections received an order from a federal judge. Ronna Romney McDaniel helped lead the effort to stop this recount from continuing.
Shortly after the recount was halted, Romney McDaniel praised the decision and said that the effort was a waste of money.
“This is a victory for the taxpayers and voters of Michigan who can be assured that their vote will count when the state’s electors meet on December 19th,” Romney McDaniel wrote on her Facebook page. “…Jill Stein’s 1% temper tantrum cost Michigan taxpayers millions of dollars and would have cost them additional millions of dollars if not for the actions of President-elect Donald J. Trump, the Michigan Republican Party, and Attorney General Bill Schuette.”