Perdue picks Nick Ayers to head RGA

From the Atlanta Business Chronicle:

Gov. Sonny Perdue has picked Nick Ayers, the 24-year-old manager of his successful re-election campaign, to head the Republican Governors Association as its youngest executive director ever.

Perdue on Dec. 1 officially moved up from vice chairman to chairman of the national fundraising group, succeeding Massachusetts governor and potential presidential candidate Mitt Romney.

He also tapped Paul Bennecke, executive director of the state Republican Party, to serve as the RGA’s new political director under Ayers.

Here’s the full article, “Perdue campaign manager to lead RGA”, and as long as little Nicky doesn’t drink & drive, we’re cool.


  1. Installing your 24 year old campaign manager — who has just been charged with DUI — when it is widely acknowledged that really Sonny runs his campaigns and strategy mostly himself — as the director of a national organization tasked with saving Republican governors from further defeat is not the logical action to take for a sober man.

    But Nick has a history of Georgia governors bailing him out of trouble and then somehow being promoted to even more responsibility.

  2. Bull Moose says:

    I still think it’s interesting that it went without mention that Georgia Power’s chief lobbyist is now the Chief of Staff for the Governor.

    You’d have thought the environmental lobby would have raised an issue here or there, but I guess those folks aren’t really welcome in the Governor’s office anyway…

  3. ugavi says:

    hardcore – Taylor got smoked – get over it. Nick is a talented guy. He was with Sonny in 2002. He was with Handel in 2003, and Sonny this year. Pretty strong track record if you ask me.

  4. rugby_fan says:


    MS also has a race–albeit safe GOP. In LA, Blanco is vulnerable even within her own primary next year so that shall be interesting too.

  5. RuralDem says:


    If Representative Gene Taylor runs for Senator Cochran’s seat, I would take it away from the safe category and put it in the “toss-up” category. Taylor is the rated as the most conservative Democrat in the house. He could garner support from both sides of the aisle.


    I was under the assumption that all the candidates run on one ballot and then the top two regardless of party make it to the next ballot.

  6. RuralDem says:

    Oops forgot to add:

    I’d say Blanco’s seat is vulnerable as she will face heavy competition from both sides. According to some political blogs I visit, Senator Landreau’s brother who recently lost the mayoral race to Ray Nagin is rumored to be throwing his hat into the ring, as well as Nagin. Also, former Senator John Breaux is rumored to enter as well. From everything I have read, Representative Bobby Jindal will be the front runner on the Republican side.

    Breaux was and still is very popular in Louisiana, and Mitch Landreau’s got the family name. I either one of them could beat Blanco. If the Democrats want to keep the seat, another Democrat needs to beat her.

  7. Adam Fogle says:


    Louisiana has a “non-partisan” primary, held on the day of the general election. The top two, regardless of party, usually end up in a runoff unless someone pulls more than 50% during the primary.

    Thus, if someone wins said majority, then the primary is actually the general election.  But if not, then the runoff is the general (and can be between two candidates from the same or different parties).

    It’s the only state to use this system, hence the name “Cajun Primary.”

    But they’re switching to a closed primary starting in 2008 for Congressional races.

  8. mercergirl says:

    I’m sorry (hell no I’m not) but I think this could have been a stupid choice- I could be proven wrong and I hope to God I am. Perhaps someone will help the party… I’m just taking in a deep breath.

  9. JasonW says:

    I don’t like it. And i’m a republican who vote for Sonny. I just dont think that we will be good in there position, and I think they will be typical peter principal people.

  10. Bulldog Politik says:

    Outgoing RGA E.D. Philip Musser

    Former Vice president of The Dutko Group Companies. A deputy director in organizing the G8 Summit, in Sea Island, GA.

    Deputy chief of staff to Secretaries Alphonso Jackson and Mel Martinez at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

    Senior staff member for the 2001 Presidential Inaugural Committee.

    Lead advance representative for the Bush-Cheney campaign in 2000.

    Assistant vice president to Dutko’s state and local lobbying firm, KNP, Jan. 1998-Aug. 2000. Worked on Dole for President.

    B.A. in History from Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio.

  11. atlantaman says:

    Well he managed a successful re-election campaign for Governor in one of the largest states in the union.

  12. Bulldog Politik says:

    Nick is replacing Phil Musser, an experienced senior business executive and lobbyist who worked in the federal government and on several campaigns.

    Nick seems like a friendly and ambitious kid but he is way out of his league.

  13. susanbc says:

    I agree, Nick is a young, friendly, and ambitious kid to folks that don’t know him well. I’ve known him since he was 7. He was “40” at 7. He will go far. Watch him…

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