State Politics

NC GOP chairman meets with Trump in Oval Office to talk ‘path to victory’ in 2018

N.C. Republican Party Chairman Robin Hayes met with President Donald Trump this week.
N.C. Republican Party Chairman Robin Hayes met with President Donald Trump this week. cliddy@newsobserver.com

N.C. Republican Party Chairman Robin Hayes met with President Donald Trump in the Oval Office Thursday to discuss the party’s efforts in upcoming elections.

The NC GOP sent out a news release Thursday evening to highlight Hayes’ visit, which also included lunch with White House chief of staff Reince Priebus and political director Bill Stepien. Hayes was joined by other state GOP chairs “from high performing states,” according to the release.

“It’s an honor to represent North Carolina Republicans in the Oval Office,” Hayes said in the release. “I took the opportunity to remind President Trump of all the hard work our state’s activists have done so far, and their continued dedication to successful Republican governance.”

Hayes is a former Congressman from Concord who has led the state party for about a year. He’s seeking another term in the leadership role at the NC GOP’s convention next month in Wilmington.

The news release says Hayes and Trump “discussed the North Carolina Republican Party’s ongoing efforts to support the Trump policy agenda and the path to victory in North Carolina in 2018 and 2020.” The two also discussed tax policy and regulatory changes under GOP leadership in the state.

“President Trump was a great partner in 2016, and we’re all committed to working hard and supporting his efforts to ‘Make America Great Again,’” Hayes said.

The N.C. Democratic Party says Hayes should have used the face time with the president to bring up North Carolina’s need for disaster relief funding. Gov. Roy Cooper had sought $900 million in federal relief for Hurricane Matthew victims, but the state has received only $6.1 million.

“President Trump and the NCGOP share a love of power grabbing, and as the administration goes into free fall over Russia, he can look to North Carolina Republicans on how to respond,” Democratic Party spokeswoman Meera Sriram said in an email. “It would have been nice if Chairman Hayes asked President Trump why he only funded less than 1 percent of our state’s Hurricane Matthew relief efforts.”

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