January 5th, 2010
02:09 PM ET
5 years ago

Outgoing Florida GOP chair hammers party purists

Jim Greer (left), the outgoing chairman of the Republican Party of Florida, said his opponents want to 'burn the house down.'
Jim Greer (left), the outgoing chairman of the Republican Party of Florida, said his opponents want to 'burn the house down.'

(CNN) – Florida Republican Party chairman Jim Greer announced his resignation on a conference call with reporters Tuesday, accusing his conservative critics of being purists who are "shredding and tearing the fabric" of the GOP.

For months, Greer has been assailed by GOP activists accuse him of mismanaging party finances and favoring Gov. Charlie Crist in his Senate primary bid against Marco Rubio, the more conservative former House Speaker.

Greer said his opponents want to "burn the house down and destroy the Republican Party."

"I am not a purist," he said in describing his vision for the party. "I have never been a purist. I believe that our party stands for principles and values and that anyone who has an interest in our party should be able to participate."

Greer, who was appointed to his post by Charlie Crist in 2007, stressed that he has worked to create a more inclusive party in Florida and urged the GOP "to stop the fight between moderates and conservatives and put the focus on electing Republicans in 2010."

Greer avoided criticizing Rubio during his salvo.

"At the end of the day, the voters will decide what the Republican Party should look like," he said.


Filed under: Charlie Crist • Florida • Marco Rubio
soundoff (45 Responses)
  1. todd

    As long as the republicans insist on being the party of the tea baggers and birthers, they will always be a regional party at best.

    January 5, 2010 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  2. Jamie

    GOP is tattered beyond repair. Rip and shred away!!!

    January 5, 2010 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  3. Jacq

    Interesting,can we say wigs

    January 5, 2010 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  4. hongli

    This is what life is in the Republican Party. This is a DOG EAT DOG PARTY.

    January 5, 2010 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  5. Real American

    "burn the house down and destroy the Republican Party."??? That would be awesome! The far-right wing of the Repug party should splinter off and rename themselves the Fascist Tea-bagger Party. And "I believe that our party stands for principles and values and that anyone who has an interest in our party should be able to participate."??? HAHAHAHAHAHA! That is hilarious nonsense!

    January 5, 2010 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  6. Josh

    The GOP is a self-cannibalizing entity. Like white blood cells destroying the whole body. Anytime a moderate (more practical) member of their party speaks out in any rational, non-fanatical manner, they are alienated and assailed. Being a liberal it fills me with delight. Being an American it both saddens and concerns me. Regardless of differing points of view, rational debate is essential for a healthy democracy. We currently do not have a healthy democracy.

    January 5, 2010 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  7. Rorschach

    Ah, the Republican quest for Party Purity.

    "We shall unite with any comrade if he abides by the Party's Programme, Constitution and decisions."

    Mao Tse-Tong, "On Coalition Government" (April 24, 1945)

    –How incredibly ironic.

    January 5, 2010 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  8. Angie

    If being a purist means less govt. intervention in our lives, more personal responsiblility, and getting back to what our founding fathers envisioned then I will vote a "purist" everytime. They are not Republican purists.....but American purists!!!

    January 5, 2010 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  9. Marcelle

    As a Florida resident, I will be voting for Mr. Meek or whichever democrat gets into the primary. I will not vote for either of these men.

    January 5, 2010 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  10. Mary in Toronto

    The GOP is counting on the Americans to have a short term memory. They hope the American parents will forget how many of their children died in Iraq on a lie, how many southerners died in Katrina, how many business people died in 911 on the Bush watch, how many men, women and children died from lack of health care, how the GOP gave tax cuts to the top 1% only while jobs were disappearing faster than lightening and the troops went to fight without adequate equipment and the vets lost benefits. If you're thinking of voting Republican please bend over. Further.

    January 5, 2010 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  11. Henry Miller, Libertarian

    The neo-con nuts drove me out of the Republican Party years ago–I hope the GOP will get the message, evict the American Taliban, and go back to real conservatism.

    As things stand now, both major parties are exponents of authoritarian Big Government, and neither has the slightest sense of fiscal responsibility. And both, given their way, would ruin both the American culture and the American economy in just a few more decades, or even years.

    January 5, 2010 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  12. dd

    Greer is right. The republicans are beginning to resemble a cast of fanatical nutcases, none of which have any solutions to anything, just criticism.

    January 5, 2010 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  13. People's Voice

    The cannibals are on the loose within the GOP. HAHA.

    January 5, 2010 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  14. dblzap

    GOOD, RIP the GOP

    The Party of greed and corruption

    January 5, 2010 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  15. Drew

    GOP's stop the fighting and do what the people elected you to do, and that is to mingle and help this country. Ha Ha Ha

    January 5, 2010 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  16. Still a Republican

    One of the few good republicans resigning. Not a good sign. 2010 will not be the year many of my fellow party members believe it to be. At the rate that the GOOD republicans are being pushed from the fold, we will have only one kind of candidate representing republicans, hitler/stalin dictators, who force upon you their prehistoric and retarded christian teachings, and dealing with NOTHING of the nations primary concerns.

    The GOP of today is a sickening and disgusting group of putrid slime.
    The stench coming from my party, primarily the leaders, is foul beyond description.

    It saddens me to see my once proud party, that stood for the people, ALL of the people, reduced to this wretched group of immoral domestic terrorists.

    January 5, 2010 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  17. Mike S., New Orleans

    Voters have already decided what the Republican party looks like: Rush Limbaugh, Sarah Palin, Ann Coulter, Sean Hannity, Mike Huckabee, and the last bastion of right wing neocon nutjobs too stupid to get off of a sinking ship.

    January 5, 2010 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  18. Stephan

    It wasn't his purity that resulted in his termination – it was his attitiude, mismagement, corrupt nature and feeling that he was "the" GOP of Florida.

    He's just trying to cry like a victim – after all those he's vicitimized took action against him. He cries like a child.

    January 5, 2010 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  19. James Napoli

    Nice to hear straight realistic talk. The conservatives are more wedded to idealogy than practical compromised solutions for Americans. This approach has greatly hurt the Republican party - on the nationla level it has reduced them to the Party of NO, which is another way of saying the party of status quo.

    January 5, 2010 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  20. Pel

    I sure hope the Repugs do not listen to Greer. The supposedly God like purist will sure ruin any hopes for the repugs in 2010 & 2012. Keep at it you crazy repugs .

    January 5, 2010 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  21. George

    Good for him. He is a republican that wants to help America, not destroy it. These teabaggers who go to demonstrations, carry rifles, scratch their crotches and say : I'm a man" are the death to America.
    There are good republicans out there and many of them are my friends even tho I'm a dem. These good people want o help Obama, not destroy him and our country.
    You normal republicans better take charge of your party before it is too late.

    January 5, 2010 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  22. JES

    Don't let the door hit you on the way out.

    January 5, 2010 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  23. Al-NY,NY

    A clear thinking Republican...how refreshing. Too bad the "purists" he refers to now run the party and are working on renaming it the American Taliban. Their motto "swear alligience to the Oxycotin addict, quitter Alaskan governer, former VP (Darth Vadar) as well as the rest of the talking heads/Faux news or you are not welcome" And these fools think they are going to take back Congress???

    January 5, 2010 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  24. sara

    "Purist"?......you mean hypocrites and crazies, right?

    January 5, 2010 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  25. Kyle, Virginia

    The GOP is a dying breed.

    January 5, 2010 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
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