November 24th, 2009
06:16 PM ET
5 years ago

RNC resolution won't 'handcuff' Steele, co-sponsor says

 RNC members have drafted what's being described as a 'purity' resolution.
RNC members have drafted what's being described as a 'purity' resolution.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - One of Republican National Committee members who helped draft resolution that would prevent moderate candidates from receiving party money said Tuesday that the measure is not intended to challenge to the leadership of Michael Steele, the RNC chairman.

"I think it's sufficiently broad so as not to handcuff him," Nebraska committeeman Pete Ricketts said of the so-called "purity" resolution, which first leaked to reporters Monday.

The resolution, sponsored by Indiana committee member Jim Bopp Jr., proposes a ten-point ideological platform for the Republican party and would require GOP candidates to adhere to at least eight of those points. If not, a candidate be prohibited from receiving financial assistance from the RNC.

Bopp told CNN Monday that the resolution will help Steele avoid criticism from the right-wing of the party. "This resolution will establish standards so that he won't feel obligated to support every Republican and not feel criticized," he said.

Ricketts said the resolution was sparked in large part by the contentious special election in New York's 23rd congressional district, in which a third party candidate, Doug Hoffman, entered the race as an conservative alternative to the moderate Republican candidate, Dede Scozzafava. Conservative activists nationwide rallied to Hoffman's side, eventually driving Scozzafava from the race, which was ultimately won by Democrat Bill Owens.

"NY-23 crystallized for us some of the issues the Tea Party people had with Republican party," said Ricketts, one of the resolution's ten co-sponsors. "We felt like we needed to send a message that we are the party of conservative values. This resolution is one way to demonstrate that we mean what we say."

Ricketts disagreed with the suggestion that the measure is an attempt to purge moderate voices from the GOP.

"It's just the opposite," he told CNN. "What it says is that we are a broad party, that we understand people are not going to agree with us on every issue."

He said the resolution, which could be introduced at the RNC Winter Meeting in Hawaii come January, is still "a work in progress."


Filed under: Michael Steele • Popular Posts • RNC
soundoff (296 Responses)
  1. all the news that's fit to omit

    As a Republican this ticks me off a bit, I understand the need for what happened in NEW YORK to never happen again, but why put this out there it will just open you to ridicule.

    The ONLY person I agree with a 100% of the time is me, but don't handcuff yourself too much.

    Sorry Obamabots, the facts are that we are a center RIGHT Country and there are more Moderate thinkers that lean REPUBLICAN, but you will find that out next year BIG TIME.

    CNN, how about a story on the polls that show REGULAR folks against Obambicare 56 to 38 percent or a story about how the lying corrupt liberals are being exposed in ClimateGate?

    Nah, keep up with the Palin non-stories, the sheep care more about that.

    November 24, 2009 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  2. Anonymous

    The GOP keeps comparing Obama's plans and policies to that of Adolf Hitlers and then they go and do something like this? A "purity" resolution. Now I know that this isn't as extreme as Hitlers movement, but the hypocrisy is almost laughable. The GOP is becoming a joke. They are going to single themselves out even further by ignoring members of their own party that aren't as insane and non-partisan? Between this and Sarah Palin, it sounds like the GOP is trying really hard to screw themselves over when it comes to the next election.

    November 24, 2009 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  3. Jack

    It wasn't until Democrats realized they had to move towards the center that they began winning elections. The Republicans will have to learn this same lesson. Until then, they can sit in their small, self-absorbed, and self-righteous corner and feel good and pure as they see election after election go down the tubes. It's fun to watch but sad to see this Grand Ole Party highjacked by an ideological fanaticism akin to Stalinism. Let the purges begin.

    November 24, 2009 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  4. redWHITEblue

    Purity.....
    i think steele will be gone in less than 3 months.

    November 24, 2009 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  5. N

    This is silly. Purity laws? If 2006 and 2008 taught us anything, it was that the far right folks are not in a position to lead. Just like the fringe left folks will bring the GOP roaring back in coming years, we can't let ourselves initiate another pendulum swing by going too far to the right.

    November 24, 2009 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  6. Dan D

    I thought we lived in America where we have the right to choose.

    Why do republicans have the right to tell people what makes a good American ? Why would anyone want to be a republican if they are always telling you what to think and to believe in ?

    Democrats believe in all those things too but if you choose not to, we don't lable you un-American or un-qualified to be in any political party.

    November 24, 2009 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  7. Tyler Henderson

    Hehe. Limiting the people in your party. This is a great move... for the Democrats. ^_^

    Keep up the good work!

    November 24, 2009 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  8. cjr

    this reminds me of Hitler's Germany purity tests, etc pretty soon they will only want blue eyed blonds! and they try to portray Obama as Hitler – Ta!

    November 24, 2009 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  9. Big Ed

    If you have to explain it, you missed the mark.

    Is that all the Republican Party can do? Issue decrees and statementsYou guys broke it, now quit talking and fix it!

    November 24, 2009 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  10. Josh

    As a former republican, I just cannot understand the apparent mistakes my old party continues to make. The takeaway they had from the NY-23 race is that they weren't conservative enough?

    .....momentary bafflement....

    No matter what the result of anything, they take that as the message I guess.

    November 24, 2009 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  11. Splat!~

    Force the poor to bear unwanted children and then deny them access to health care. Is it any wonder that the Christian right insists on having 'In God We Trust' on our coinage?~

    November 24, 2009 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  12. Tom St. Paul

    The GOP is reaping what it had sown 30 years ago when they courted the evangelical crowd. It's like watching a slowly sinking ship, and no one is throwing any life ropes to those on board.

    November 24, 2009 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  13. Randolph Carter, I'm no expert but...

    Good. I hope the conservatives and republicans split. That will insure that neither runs anything for decades. Maybe then we can undo the damage from 30 years of trickle down free market nonsense (which destroyed the middle class) and ancient superstition about a big invisible man in the sky (do you believe in the tooth fairy as well?) Good riddance to them. Have a nice day!

    November 24, 2009 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  14. voter

    the thugs still have not learned their lesson. people don't want the fanatic, lunatic right-wingers running the goverment. did they not receive the message last year and this years ny-23 and ca-10.

    November 24, 2009 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  15. Dave

    So, why do Republicans need politicians at all? Couldn't they just have their list of conservative viewpoints, and have votes placed accordingly?

    Or better yet, how about a Conservative robot?

    This just goes to show you that conservatives really don't believe in evolution, and things should never change.

    November 24, 2009 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  16. disgusted in minneapolis

    Stalin, Hitler, and Mussolini could not have said it better. Thank you RNC for revealing yourselves.

    November 24, 2009 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  17. Tom in Desoto, Tx

    Purity huh? Where's the headquarters? Hayden Lake, Idaho? or 1933 Berlin? Sounds like either skinheads or the "Great" Aryan race Hilter envisioned. Or, they're just run of the mill republicans.

    November 24, 2009 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  18. janeydotcom

    "which was ultimately won by Democrat Bill Owens...."
    I think this ideological pogrom within the Republican Party is a great idea. Even the Republicans who don't personally disgust me with their hypocrisy and rantings usually vote in favor of their bad policy. And we'll win lots more elections!

    November 24, 2009 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  19. Tony

    Nothing like the Big Tent policy of the American Taliban......

    November 24, 2009 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  20. Carl

    I agree. Repubs should do everything they can to limit the size and scope of their party. 20% and shrinking, sounds good to me.

    November 24, 2009 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  21. Bluebonnet

    He needs to be silenced!

    November 24, 2009 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  22. Cecil

    This is almost cartoonish!

    November 24, 2009 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  23. Dustin

    Sounds like a party without an identity.

    November 24, 2009 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  24. gary

    Those Republicans are so smart. What could go wrong?

    November 24, 2009 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  25. Mississippi Girl

    Sounds like they found a loop hole to discriminate against their OWN. How sad. Oh, I forgot; if you are not with us you are against us.. LMAO

    November 24, 2009 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
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