NRCC launches site to protect incumbents

House Republicans' campaign arm launched an online hub on Thursday to protect GOP incumbents heading into the 2012 elections.

The National Republican Congressional Committee's (NRCC) new website,, went live to help advance its "Patriot Program" — the division responsible for protecting 80-some House Republicans' jobs in next fall's elections.

The website lists 10 members of the Patriot Program so far, all of them freshmen with the exception of Rep. Tom Latham (R-Iowa), who, due to redistricting, will have to challenge Rep. Leonard Boswell (D-Iowa) in an incumbent-versus-incumbent matchup.

Two of the freshmen, Reps. Mike Fitzpatrick (R-Pa.) and Charlie Bass (R-N.H.), had previously served in Congress, and the other seven are true freshmen in tough districts heading into 2012.

The new site is intended to bring under one roof news, messaging tools and contribution opportunities to members of the Patriot Program. NRCC Chairman Pete Sessions (Texas) and Deputy Chairman Greg Walden (R-Ore.) are personally supervising the effort. The site will be home to the added incumbent members of the program.

Already the NRCC collected $1.5 million at a fundraiser to benefit these incumbents, and the committee says it will dole out cash on a "need + merit" basis.

"The Patriot Program website is a tool for offense in a campaign playbook built on setting benchmarks and accountability for winning campaigns," said Emily Davis, the NRCC spokeswoman for Sessions. "Chairman Sessions and Deputy Chairman Walden are committed to defeating Democrats and returning Republican Members through the Patriot Program, and that means utilizing every resource available to spread our message and raise the support we need for victory next election.”

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