Contenders bob, weave in 6th Congressional District forum _lowres

Advocate Photo by MARK BALLARD -- Paul Dietzel, a Baton Rouge businessman, spoke Tuesday, July 8, at a forum for Republican candidates for the 6th Congressional district.

WASHINGTON — Paul Dietzel II, the LSU graduate who unsuccessfully ran for Louisiana's 6th Congressional District seat in 2014, has emerged as a central figure in a fight brewing over the Republican Party's efforts to modernize its small donor fundraising efforts, according to a new report.

The Republican Party, with the Trump administration's backing, last month launched its new WinRed online fundraising tool, which its website describes as "designed to combat" the Democratic Party's successful ActBlue platform.

Politico reports that the GOP, along with other campaign arms including the Republican Governors Association and the National Republican Senatorial Committee, have threatened legal action against Dietzel, the grandson and namesake of the late LSU football coach, over his rival fundraising platform GiveGOP.

RNC chief counsel Justin Riemer wrote in a cease-and-desist letter to Dietzel that Give.GOP had to stop using the party's logo and needed to provide information for how it would transfer donations to the party. Any failure “to comply with the demands and requests described above in a timely fashion may force the RNC to consider a legal remedy," Politico quoted from the letter.

Dietzel, who launched the non-partisan Anedot online fundraising platform in 2010, said in a statement to Politico that GiveGOP is superior to WinRed and that the party shouldn't try to monopolize a single platform.

“We will review the letter from the RNC in a timely manner and respond as appropriate,” Dietzel said. “Give.GOP empowers grassroots donors and has no competition in the market. Nothing like it exists. Why are people who are supposed to be helping the president fighting so hard to prevent him from saving millions of dollars through innovation?”

Baton Rouge-based Anedot has been used as a fundraising tool by GOP candidates, as well as nonprofits, colleges and religious groups.

Read more about the GOP online fundraising platform fight here via Politico.

Email Elizabeth Crisp at ecrisp@theadvocate.com and follow on Twitter, @elizabethcrisp.