Report: Romney, RNC to build 'shadow state party' in Nevada

Mitt Romney and the Republican National Committee (RNC) will erect their own Nevada state operation to supercede Nevada's dysfunctional state Republican apparatus, according to a report from the Las Vegas Sun's Jon Ralston.

The Nevada Republican Party has long been a mess, and Ron Paul backers who have a questionable commitment to electing Romney recently took control of most of the party structure. Last week, the Clark County Republican Party, which covers two thirds of the state's population, called for RNC chairman Reince Priebus to resign.

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In response, Romney and the RNC will build out their own ground game in the state to run the get-out-the-vote and voter-contact operations the state party usually handles.

"Essentially, we're setting up a shadow state party," a GOP insider told Ralston.

RNC spokesman Kirsten Kukowski told The Hill that the RNC hasn't "made a decision and continue to work with the Nevada GOP," while Nevada Republican Chairman Michael McDonald told Ralston he planned to work with Priebus to "build a top-notch ground game to beat Barack Obama and elect Mitt Romney to the White House."

Nevada's messy Republican Party has been the biggest structural concern for the RNC and Romney. It will be interesting to see if they make any similar moves in Iowa, where Paul supporters also control the state party but have been less antagonistic toward the RNC.

This post was updated at 10:10 a.m.