Posts Tagged ‘Jim DeMint’

Let the Republican Civil War Begin

Saturday, November 6th, 2010

The cracks in Republican unity are already beginning to show.

Even before the election, Politico reported that the Republican establishment was working to try to find a viable alternative candidate to defeat Sarah Palin in the 2012 primaries for president.

Increasingly, it seems that Palin would have a good shot at the nomination, starting with a win in Evangelical dominated Iowa, followed by a tougher, but not impossible race in New Hampshire, and then another good chance in South Carolina. But John Heilman’s recent piece on how she could actually win the presidency relies on the idea that New York mayor Michael Bloomburg would run, split the electoral college vote and send the election to the House of Representatives (where the Republicans would elect her president, even though she failed to win the election outright). The fact that he needs to rely on so many “ifs” for Palin to win the general election shows how difficult this would be.

Sister Sarah fought back hard on the Politico article, using her favorite Republican tactic of blaming the media, calling out Jim VandeHei and Mike Allen by name and telling them to ”man up.”   The woman’s a treasure.

Meanwhile, another intra-party skirmish has broken out in the wake of the Republicans underperformance in the Senate elections. To be sure, a 6 seat pickup is nothing to scoff at, but there’s a clear case to make that two more Senate seats (in Delaware and Colorado) would have shifted to the Republican column and a plausible case that Sue Lowden could have succeeded in Nevada where Sharron Angle failed, effectively tie-ing up the Senate and elevating Joe Biden’s official role of presiding over the Senate to more than ceremonial duty.

The day after the election, the divide was in full effect, with prominent Republicans Lindsey Graham stating the obvious:

Candidates matter,” said Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.). “It was a good night for Republicans but it could have been a better one. We left some on the table….If you think what happened in Delaware is ‘a win’ for the Republican Party then we don’t have a snowball’s chance to win the White House,” he said. “If you think Delaware was a wake-up call for Republicans than we have shot at doing well for a long time.”

An anonomously sourced “high-profile” Republican senator was even more direct, saying of Senator Jim DeMint, the biggest supporter of GOP ideological purity, “It’s like you’re on the five-yard line ready to score and the quarterback calls the play and some member of your team tackles one of your members and keeps you from scoring…We came tantalizingly close to a majority.”

Fox talking head Mort Konracke was just as withering, pointing the finger at Palin and DeMint specifically:

The people who got slapped the hardest in this election — besides Nancy Pelosi and Barack Obama — are Jim DeMint and Sarah Palin…Jim DeMint and Sarah Palin are responsible for the fact that the Senate did not go Republican. They’re the ones who are responsible for Christine O’Donnell. They’re the ones who are responsible for Joe Miller in Alaska. They’re the ones who are responsible for Ken Buck in Colorado. They’re the ones who are responsible for Sharron Angle in Nevada.

Kondracke also said of Palin,  ”She’s a joke even within her own party. The idea that she would be the presidential nominee is unthinkable.”

The fight between the old country club Republicans and the Tea Party nuts is going to be a fun side show over the next couple of years.