Incumbent Republican National Committee (RNC) Chairman Robert "Mike" Duncan led challengers during the first ballot to elect a new RNC chairman, but fell well short of securing the majority necessary to win reelection.

Duncan won 52 votes out of 168 cast on the first round of voting. 85 votes are necessary to secure a win.

Duncan was followed closely by former Maryland Lt. Gov. Michael Steele, who won 46 votes.

South Carolina GOP Chairman Katon Dawon received 28 votes, followed by Michigan GOP Chairman Saul Anuzis at 22, and former Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell at 20 votes.