PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — Bob Asher, Pennsylvania’s longtime Republican national committeeman, announced last week he will not seek re-election in an effort to smooth over what he says he thinks has become a “destructive process.”
Asher, from Montgomery County, has been Pennsylvania’s representative on the Republican National Committee since he was appointed by Governor Tom Ridge in 1998.
But on Monday, he sent an email to the state Republican committee announcing he is no longer seeking re-election to the post, but will remain involved in fundraising for the Trump campaign and for his political action committee, the Pennsylvania Future Fund.
In his email, Asher said the “infighting” for committeeman “has become a destructive process,” so he’s decided to back out of the race and focus 100% on fundraising.
Pollster and public affairs professor Terry Madonna said presidential campaigns aren’t as reliant on state parties as they used to be, but a move for unity can be beneficial.
“There is a sense in which they can help provide a basis for unity. That doesn’t always happen for sure,” he said. “Parties can break apart and have their own internal wars. But depending on the leader, the unity aspect of it certainly has a relevance.”
Madonna believes through Asher’s fundraising, he will remain a player.
“That ratchets up the influence of the political money makers and there’s no doubt about that,” he said.
In May, the state committee said there was a deal in place to allow Andy Reilly to be elected to the post but then to give Asher a few more months to get through the presidential election. Asher says he would never agree to something like that as he believes the party works best when it’s ground up.