Republican State Leadership Committee
The Republican State Leadership Committee describes itself as “the only national organization whose mission is to elect down-ballot, state-level Republican officeholders.” The RSLC focuses on lieutenant governor, attorney general, secretary of state, state judiciary, and state legislator positions. However, as Politico notes, the Republican Attorneys General Association split off from the RSLC in January 2014 due to “internal tensions” and “a sense among the party’s attorneys general that they deserved greater independence and financial control in the 2014 cycle and beyond.”
The RSLC additionally runs the “Future Majority Project,” focused on recruiting and electing minority candidates, and the “Right Women, Right Now” initiative. According to the RSLC, those two projects combined to receive $6 million in direct support from RSLC in 2014; OpenSecrets notes the group spent nearly $40 million total that cycle. Also under the RSLC is the Judicial Fairness Initiative, a program to elect conservatives to state-level judicial branches. The RSLC additionally administrates the .gop domain level, selling .gop domains to interested candidates and groups, such as StopHillary.gop, which the site features.
The single largest contributor to the RSLC since its formation after 2002 has been the US Chamber of Commerce, which has given $18,231,810 from the 2004 through the 2014 election cycles. Another major donor has been Sheldon Adelson’s Las Vegas Sands Corporation, which contributed $1,150,750 during the 2014 election, the third highest contribution that year. The Koch brothers’ Koch Industries contributed a total of $640,540 in the 2012 and 2014 cycles, during which it was a major donor (Koch was a contributor at smaller levels in previous cycles, as well). Other contributors include oil & gas companies, the pharmaceutical industry, and major energy/utility companies.
The RSLC’s president is Matt Walter, who formerly worked for the New York State Republican Party. Its chairman is former Florida Attorney General and Congressman Bill McCollum. Former Republican National Committee chair Ed Gillespie serves as Chairman Emeritus after stepping down from his role as chair in a failed bid for a Senate seat in Virginia in 2014.