PLURIBUS NEWS: D.C.-based GOP groups branch out to influence state legislatures
January 23, 2023 -- Organizations aligned with sometimes sparring factions of congressional Republicans are pushing beyond the beltway to build closer relationships in state legislatures.
The Republican Main Street Partnership wants to help state legislators it refers to as the most interested in governing to create their own groups and to collaborate on legislative priorities.
“They’re probably the most conservative group that Main Street has ever had, to be honest with you, and that’s where the country’s going and that’s great,” said Sarah Chamberlain, the group’s president.
Chamberlain said state lawmakers who have reached out to the group want to establish similar partnerships within their legislatures or work closely together. She sees the effort as a way to groom candidates for federal office as Main Street Republicans seek other offices or retire.
“We’re pretty excited about that because we need to build a conservative farm team, which Main Street has never done before,” Chamberlain said. “So this is really our first endeavor into this area.”
When asked about the freedom caucus project, Chamberlain said it was a good idea, which is why they are working on their own project.
She downplayed the risk of any tension with the U.S. Freedom Caucus and said that most members of the two groups work together and agree more than they disagree. But she stressed that the Main Street Republicans outnumber the U.S. Freedom Caucus Republicans.
She said their goal is to elect more Main Street Republicans in Congress to reduce gridlock.
“It’d be nice to have more people who want to get to ‘yes’ elected,” Chamberlain said. “So that’s what we’re trying to do in identifying the candidates."
”Congress has to work, and I think the American people want Congress to work,” Chamberlain said. “And that’s what we’re trying to do.”