For all the talk of retrofitting their brand for the future, national Republicans are still finding fundraising success in their past. As it turns out, George W. Bush is still worth a buck or two to his party.
The National Republican Congressional Committee last month launched an online engagement and fundraising effort centered on the dedication of Bush’s presidential library, hoping the former Republican leader would elicit enthusiasm and donations from the party’s base. And the committee says it was a success.
The House Republican committee is still using Bush's likeness; in one such ad, the ex-president is seen wearing a T-shirt and cowboy hat, with the words “To Defend Our Freedom” plastered underneath. Contributors are asked for a $5 donation.
And Bush gets clicks, too. Per an NRCC aide, the committee’s top two most popular Facebook posts this year each congratulated Bush on his library dedication – each reaching about 1.3 to 1.4 million people (four times the size of the NRCC’s Facebook audience at the time). “We launched this effort when President Bush unveiled his library, and given its success and popularity both on Facebook and with fundraising, we have kept it running,” said Daniel Scarpinato, NRCC spokesman.