February 4th, 2010
04:43 PM ET
8 years ago

Club for Growth targets Gingrich

Newt Gingrich is being attacked by the conservative Club for Growth.

Newt Gingrich is being attacked by the conservative Club for Growth.

Washington (CNN) - The conservative Club for Growth is hitting back at former House Speaker Newt Gingrich for criticizing the small government group during an appearance in Utah for Republican Sen. Bob Bennett. The Club is actively working to defeat Bennett, who is seeking re-election in November.

Several Republicans are challenging Bennett from his right flank as he seeks a fourth term, largely because of his vote in favor of the Wall Street bailout in 2008. While the Club has said they will oppose Bennett, they haven't said which candidate they will support instead.

But Bennett has the backing of the National Republican Senatorial Committee - which as a rule supports Republican incumbents - and on Wednesday Gingrich showed up in Salt Lake City to lend a hand.

"I wish the Club for Growth would spend as much time and energy to defeat liberal Democrats as they do dividing Republicans," Gingrich told a crowd at Bennett's formal campaign launch, according to the Deseret News. "I try to defeat liberal Democrats. I don't spend much time trying to defeat Republicans."

That prompted the influential conservative group to take a shot at Gingrich for backing "ultra-liberal" Dede Scozzafava in last year's special election in New York's 23rd district. The moderate Scozzafava quit the race after being harangued by conservative activists who supported Doug Hoffman. Democrat Bill Owens eventually won the race.

"Newt has proven time and again that he will support any Republican, regardless of policies and principles," said Club president Chris Chocola in a statement. "That's his right, but the Club for Growth PAC puts principles over party,"

"Newt was wrong about New York-23, and he's wrong about Utah," Chocola continued. "And pretty soon, Bennett will wish Newt never gave him the kiss of Dede."

Filed under: 2010 • Club for Growth • Newt Gingrich • Utah
soundoff (48 Responses)
  1. Wisconsonite

    Ah, the Rabid Right is at it again! Newt's got everything they hurl at him coming to him as far as I'm concerned and I LOVE to see Republicans divided!

    February 4, 2010 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  2. Erik

    Finally! It seems like some republicans actually do talk out against their idiocies... We need more of this from both parties. They're both chalk full of it!

    February 4, 2010 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  3. GI Joe

    What's wrong? Gingrich can't be "purified"???

    February 4, 2010 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  4. Peggy - TX

    The Republican Party is impoding!!!!!!

    February 4, 2010 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  5. Newt is a hypocritical RINO

    By attacking the Club for Growth and by extension, the base of the Republican Party, Newt just signed his political death warrant. Smart move Newt.

    February 4, 2010 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  6. mfhpr

    hmmmmm...and what has newt done for America, honestly?

    February 4, 2010 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  7. james

    Club for Growth used to be a reasonable organization. But if they're trying to get after Bennett because he's not a fiscal conservative, they better check the record and check themselves. He rates 83.6 out of 100 lifetime by the American Conservative Union. You don't go after a guy for one vote.

    February 4, 2010 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  8. BeverlyinNC

    I love it when Republicans nastily attack each other. It shows the voters how they will behave if they elect them to Congress. People who run nasty, unethical, in the gutter campaigns – are not going to be any different when they get to Washington. They will not serve the People who elected them. They will be spending all their time embroiled in more unethical, characterless political games where they vote NO on everything that helps the American People.

    Republicans lied to voters in 2008 and look what they have done since they have been in Washington – LIED, spread hate, fear, and have obstructed every piece of legislation to move our country forward and restore it.

    Voters need to pay attention to who they are putting in office. Look at the horrible decision MA residents made with Scott Brown. They are already very sorry they believed this typical obstructionist Republican. He won't serve MA. He will be doing whatever the Republican Party tells him to do – and that is voting NO on everything for the People.

    Keep it up Republicans. You can keep destroying each other with no leadership, lunatic teabaggers, religious nutjobs, and your laughable "purity test". Show the People your true character so we can put even more Democrats in Congress and get America back on its feet faster.

    February 4, 2010 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  9. mike

    Why do they continue to eat themselves up? Someone should tell the GoP & their right-wingnuts (aka Tea-Nazis) that cannibalism is illegal ...

    February 4, 2010 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  10. Gorbashov - Long Beach, Ca.

    Yes there is a God!

    Republicans eating their own........I never get sick of that sequel!

    Between the Tea baggers and the Club For Growth the Repugnant Party is imploding just in time for the mid-term elections!

    Yes They Will........................IMPLODE!


    February 4, 2010 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  11. Luke Brown

    Senator Bennett is a good man. The Club for Growth is really just a few rich white people with very right-wing views. No one wanted the bank bailout, but it staved off a collapse of the world's economy.

    Club for Growth = Selfish pricks out of touch with America and reality.

    February 4, 2010 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  12. Michael from Ventura

    Typical gop- they eat their own and wave the flag at the same time. What a bunch of losers! They are poster children for what's wrong in this country!

    February 4, 2010 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  13. Wild Bill

    newt who ?

    February 4, 2010 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  14. Ethan

    Conversation between Newt and Club For Growth:

    Newt: I'm better for RICH PEOPLE.
    CFG: No we are.
    Newt: No I AM.
    CFG: WE ARE.
    Newt: I AM!

    To be continued...
    ...and continued
    ...and continued
    ...and continued.

    February 4, 2010 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  15. steveg

    Once a tool, always a tool.

    February 4, 2010 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  16. gwen

    I really feel like republicans don't care about this country – they just care about getting elected and the power and wealth it brings!!! Lets face it ,it was under the republicans, starting with Reagan that they started the whole trickle down theory – we make the corporations and CEO's richer (by sending your jobs overseas for better corporate bottom line) and the riches will trickle down to the workers and middle class – well that didn't work – wake up america the republicans are white rich guys who want their white rich friends to get more powerful and richer – they just convince uneducated people that they are christians and for small government and no deficits – well what happened between 2000 and 2006 when they had congress and the white house – THEY TRIPLED THE DEFICIT and GREW GOVERNMENT!!! Wake up and stop blaming Obama for their mess!

    February 4, 2010 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  17. Charlie in Maine

    If Newt is not "Conservative" enough for you you must be a high octane moron. I swear it's enough to make the Democrats look unified.

    February 4, 2010 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  18. Franky, Land of Lincoln

    I think is fair to say that principles over party rule over any other differences, that includes people like you and I. There both passionate, from both parties but yeah, contradicting a certain belief and rationalizing it with the same argument can have major implications on ones self-esteem or image.

    I just want less government, less taxes, less spending, less back room deals, less solutions and more realistic promises, etc. But so far, I haven't seen it yet.

    I don't know what made me think that our President can accomplish that? Maybe I was drinking the Kool-Aid too much and act on emotion, maybe and I think it was. Oh and Marijuana is a hell of a drug, 🙂

    February 4, 2010 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  19. Minnesotan

    I love watching the conservatives stab each other in the back. It's only fair, since they've been stabbing us all in the back for years.

    February 4, 2010 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  20. C. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    The Republican party is desperate and in time to come they are going to show their "true colors". Scott Brown can't save them because he too will become part of the problem, these old men aren't going to change.

    February 4, 2010 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  21. harold

    You go at it . Republicans.. The last time Republicans balanced the budget was in 1930.. during theri Great Depression... then they fed us soup just like they want to do now...feed us all soup and spend less money to get us out of their Great Recessiion...

    February 4, 2010 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  22. Steve in Alabama

    EVERY GOP incumbent who voted for the bailout MUST GO!

    If they're not voting based on principle then they're voting on whim and fiat. How can you trust someone who acts without principle?

    February 4, 2010 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  23. Speck

    "Bailout Bob" isn't being attacked for one vote. He was one of the presidents party members on the banking and finance committees which wrote the disastrous bailout bill. Bob is responsible for the ensuing bonus fiascoes which Obama is attacking today. With less than 1% of his funding coming from his constituents, as opposed to banks and other interests, no wonder Bennett is a target.

    As for the partisan name calling, both sides are full of sell outs who aren't interested in their constituents nor the peoples welfare. That's why the health care bill got bogged down by earmark seeking Democrats and the people of Massachusetts chose an average Joe Republican over the Democrat establishment's option.

    Throw all the bums out and keep dumping them until they work for us instead of the corporations. Short, small, simple bills with no earmarks like Obama promised are what the Democrats need to turn this around. We can write simple bills that both sides agree get us in the right direction and leave the earmark senators in the dust.

    February 4, 2010 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
  24. rgilley

    Gingrich is a godsend....for Democrats.

    February 4, 2010 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
  25. Greg

    Utah Republican here, Newt is bad for business for sure. But candidate Egar is not a rookie, she is a plant from the GOP elitist right, and cares nothing about the people.

    Yes the GOP is getting ruined by those who've controlled it for the past 8+ years.

    We need fiscal spending on projects that create jobs, but not inflation, things like NAWAPA, MagLev Trains, renewable energy power plants, spending that increases our GDP, the GOP needs to wake up or the only people in the GOP will be a few wealthy greedy elitists.

    Browns win doesn't mean we want what we had, it means we want progress, reform, improvement, and we want jobs and opportunity not handouts or bailouts. Let the banks and corporations go belly up, they let all the individuals lose everything, guess they can't let the wealthy bank and stockholders loose.

    Cut the budget 40%, and use the money to invest in projects that provide a return, that increase production capacity, that provide high paying jobs.

    February 4, 2010 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
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