Zeldin not challenging McDaniel for RNC chair but urges her to 'make room' for new leader

The RNC under McDaniel's leadership lost the House majority in 2018, the White House in 2020 and failed to retake Congress in 2022.
Lee Zeldin, Jan. 2020

New York GOP Rep. Lee Zeldin said Wednesday morning that he does not plan on challenging Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel for her leadership, but he urged her to step aside and not run for a fourth term. 

"I won't be running for RNC Chair at this time with McDaniel's reelection pre-baked by design, but that doesn't mean she should even be running again," Zeldin tweeted.

His statement comes one day after disappointing results for Republicans in Georgia's Senate runoff with the defeat of nominee Herschel Walker.

Republicans has in the past three election cycles under McDaniel, handpicked in 2017 by then-President Trump to lead the RNC, have not done well.

They lost the House majority in 2018, the White House in 2020 and failed to capitalize on a shaky economy and historical term to take control of Congress on a so-called "red wave."

 Trump lawyer Harmeet Dhillon and My Pillow CEO have already committed to challenge McDaniel's leadership.

Zeldin was encouraged to run for the post following his highly competitive bid for governor in heavily-Democrat New York.

He appeared to calculate in his Twitter post that McDanial already has enough votes from RNC members to win a fourth term, calling the situation "pre-baked."