NewsReport: Prospective RNC employees being asked, ‘Was the 2020 election stolen?’

Report: Prospective RNC employees being asked, ‘Was the 2020 election stolen?’

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“If you say the election wasn’t stolen, do you really think you’re going to get hired?”

Michael Wyke
The Republican National Committee’s newly elected chairman, Michael Whatley, and co-chair, Lara Trump, in Houston this month. Michael Wyke / Washington Post

By Josh Dawsey, Washington Post

March 27, 2024 | 10:59 AM

Those seeking employment at the Republican National Committee after a Trump-backed purge of the committee this month have been asked in job interviews if they believe the 2020 election was stolen, according to people familiar with the interviews, making the false claim a litmus test of sorts for hiring.

In recent days, Trump advisers have quizzed multiple employees who had worked in key 2024 states about their views on the last presidential election, according to people who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe private interviews and discussions. The interviews have been conducted mostly virtually, as the prospective future employees are based in key swing states.

“Was the 2020 election stolen?” one prospective employee recalled being asked in a room with two top Trump advisers.

The question about the 2020 election has startled some of the potential employees, who viewed it as questioning their loyalty to Trump and as an unusual job interview question, according to the people familiar with the interviews. A group of senior Trump advisers have been in the RNC building in recent days conducting the interviews.

The questions about the 2020 election were open-ended, two people familiar with the questioning said.

“But if you say the election wasn’t stolen, do you really think you’re going to get hired?” one former RNC employee asked.

“Candidates who worked on the front line in battleground states or are currently in states where fraud allegations have been prevalent were asked about their work experience,” RNC and Trump spokeswoman Danielle Alvarez said in a statement Tuesday. “We want experienced staff with meaningful views on how elections are won and lost and real experience-based opinions about what happens in the trenches.”

RNC staffers were told en masse in early March that they were being let go but could reapply for jobs, and the application process has included an interview with the Trump advisers. The Trump advisers this week are vetting both former employees and some laid-off employees – whose last day is Friday – to decide how many can either return or stay with the RNC.

Doug Heye, a longtime GOP strategist who worked as communications director at the RNC, said the party had long expected staffers to mimic the positions of its presidential candidates. “You’re there for that specific reason,” he said, “to back the candidate up and go along with the worldview.”

But nominees other than Trump wouldn’t make such outlandish claims, he said, or put employees in such an uncomfortable spot.

“The problem with Trumpism is that despite bringing in very smart and very capable people,

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