September 17th, 2010
07:02 PM ET
8 years ago

GOP must keep its word or die, DeMint warns

Washington (CNN) – Republican Sen. Jim DeMint is sounding the alarm to the GOP, warning that unless the party can come together, it won't matter if Republicans regain control of Congress in November.

"If we get the majority again, even if it's just in the House, and we don't do what we say, I think the Republican Party is dead," DeMint told CNN's Candy Crowley, host of State of the Union and CNN's Chief Political Correspondent.

"The urgency for me here is the Democrat Party - and I know this sounds partisan but - are completely dysfunctional. They're the left of Europe," DeMint added, in an interview that will air Sunday on CNN's State of the Union with Candy Crowley.

A number of establishment-backed Republican candidates lost primary battles to conservative political newcomers this election cycle, as a wave of anti-Washington sentiment swept across the country. The movement has created a rift within the GOP that some predict will make governing more difficult, even if the Republicans have a majority.

DeMint has also incensed some within the Republican Party by backing conservative candidates rather than the GOP establishment's picks. He most recently endorsed Delaware Senate nominee Christine O'Donnell, who easily beat long-time Rep. Mike Castle in Tuesday's primary.

Frustration with DeMint in Republican circles boiled over following O'Donnell's win Tuesday night. One unnamed senior GOP aide told CNN's Dana Bash Tuesday night: "I wonder who Harry Reid and Chuck Schumer are calling first tonight – Chris Coons for becoming the next Senator from Delaware or Jim DeMint for helping to make it happen."

But DeMint -who has been mentioned as a 2012 presidential candidate– is taking a more conciliatory tone, telling Crowley that Republicans must unite around common causes in order to take back control.

"The Republicans are the only one who can carry the banner of what I think millions of Americans are saying - not just Republicans, Independents and Democrats - stop the spending, stop the borrowing, stop the debt, stop the takeovers. This is kind of uniting America," DeMint said.

Filed under: Jim DeMint • State of the Union
soundoff (148 Responses)
  1. Blynne

    Could we be so lucky?

    September 17, 2010 09:17 pm at 9:17 pm |
  2. Joy

    DeMint forgot stop giving the rich preferential treatment.

    September 17, 2010 09:20 pm at 9:20 pm |
  3. Robert

    The tea baggers and Republicants are going to be in for a big surprise come November.

    September 17, 2010 09:24 pm at 9:24 pm |
  4. rightsaid

    If the GOP tries to do what teabaggers want then you'll see plenty of anger and energy from the left. We're in such a lovely cycle right now.

    September 17, 2010 09:24 pm at 9:24 pm |
  5. KJ

    Demint is a perfect example of what is wrong with Washington. Extreme views on either side will not be supported by most Americans. Demint is extremist who is looking to eliminate anyone who does not agree with his views. God help us with this nut job!

    September 17, 2010 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  6. vic, Nashville TN

    In one year lot of change this called politics Now republicans losing hope

    September 17, 2010 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  7. Albo58

    Absolutely correct, Senator!

    September 17, 2010 09:28 pm at 9:28 pm |
  8. charlie from the North

    From what I've seen of the lunatic fringe replacing it I might find myself missing the GOP. I certainly am missing the "grown-ups" who used to run the GOP. I did not agree with them much but you could count on them to put the country first.

    Honestly the Tea Party is as much a danger to the country as it is to the GOP. Democrats should not cheer the distruction of the GOP though because once they destroy the GOP they are coming after the rest of the country. All "liberals and moderates have to do to help them is not vote.

    September 17, 2010 09:35 pm at 9:35 pm |
  9. normajean

    Mr.De mint says the Democratic party is" completely disfunctional." How interesting. Just which party kept working hard all the last two years to form a health plan, help the unemployed and families who had lost their homes and tried to get the economy working again, and which party did nothing but say :NO:? You know...!!! I notice that he also does what the Repubs love to do. He says " Americans are saying"......., the people want.....,well, I've got news for these guys, including Mr. De Mint that he hasn't a clue what the people want because he's listening to echoes from his own party. I know NOBODY who has been polled. I know NOBODY who has ever been asked publicly what he wants. There are a huge number of voters whose beliefs have never been heard, but they will hear them VERY
    SOON.VERY SOON!!!!!!!!

    September 17, 2010 09:36 pm at 9:36 pm |
  10. Sagebrush Shorty

    If the Republican party dies it will be from self inflicted wounds.

    September 17, 2010 09:38 pm at 9:38 pm |
  11. Anonymous

    Yeah, something like" read my lips"...what a joker

    September 17, 2010 09:38 pm at 9:38 pm |
  12. Terry B., Lexington, Ky

    Of course we are "to the left of Europe" you putz!!! Look on a map it will confirm it to you unless like everything else your pathetic NOpublican party does is look at everything upside down. And you call us "dysfunctional"...

    September 17, 2010 09:38 pm at 9:38 pm |
  13. maf

    Democrats are the left of Europe???
    What are you smoking. Get your resume ready DeMint, you might have to go back to school with what you have been fed by your Party of NO!

    Get out to vote everyone! The only way you will stop this GObP / Tea Party boondoggle, is to not let them win any positions!!!

    It is entirely up to you. Exercise your franchise!!!

    September 17, 2010 09:40 pm at 9:40 pm |
  14. joe

    hey, i got a idea..lets give billionares more paper! w/o that extra 100 grand they may end up living under a bridge. we don't want that do we? vote tea party!

    September 17, 2010 09:41 pm at 9:41 pm |
  15. CTYank

    Funny, but he often sounds like he believes what he's saying. We do have plenty of recorded quotes of Mr. DeMint, though, showing that he flip-flops more often than the GOP alleged John Kerry did.
    Once we note that Mr DeMint is playing the old greed card as purely a means of regaining power, what more needs be said?
    Senator, once elections are done, then it's time to govern.
    "Left of Europe"? Say what? We should be so lucky, and, you don't see many emigrating from Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, France, U.K.
    Stop talking poo.

    September 17, 2010 09:43 pm at 9:43 pm |
  16. GaryB

    According to DeMint, the Democratic Party is "to the left of Europe". Which begs the question... is DeMint extremely ignorant or extremely dishonest. Neither bodes well for real conservatives if we make guys like this our standard bearer.

    September 17, 2010 09:43 pm at 9:43 pm |
  17. jim atmadison

    Too late, Senator DeMint.

    In ten years three quarters of the Tea Partiers will have died of old age.

    Nutcases like Rand Paul, Sharron Angle, Christine O'Donnell will be vague memories.

    The GOP will have discarded its center, and the party will be nothing but an amusing, annoying fringe.

    September 17, 2010 09:43 pm at 9:43 pm |
  18. Daniel

    DeMint is really crazy. I'll bet Senator Lindsey Graham (also from SC) cringes every time DeMint opens his mouth. Graham, by the way, is an actual conservative and, by contrast, doesn't really seem to hate anyone.

    September 17, 2010 09:44 pm at 9:44 pm |
  19. biglio

    I'm european and on the rightside in europe....but in the Us i will vote definitely democratic and a ton of my fellow continentals think the same.
    This guy is delusional, he doesn't really have a clue of what he's talking about. Sarkozy is on the right, Berlusconi is on the right, Merkel is on the right, Cameron is on the right, Harper in Canada is on the right.
    All of them don't even have the faintest idea of dismantling our healthcare, free education, unemployment benefits, unions, environmental protections, whihc are ten times stronger than in the US, etc. etc, etc.
    Those buffoons talking about socialism and communism without even having the faintest idea of what they are talking about make me just sick. Thos,e in Europe, we call them Fascists, and WE know what we are talking about.

    September 17, 2010 09:47 pm at 9:47 pm |
  20. Jesse in Texas

    Oh, my. I just hate going to funerals.

    September 17, 2010 09:47 pm at 9:47 pm |
  21. CathyinAZ

    I hate to break to Sen DeMint BUT THE DEMS ARE NOT THE LEFT OF EUROPE!!! They are simply trying to clean up the mess LEFT BY YOUR PARTY!
    Perhaps if you spent more time working on solutions INSTEAD OF WHINNING AND SAYING NO all the time, something might get accomplished. If Bush had paid for the 2 wars, the medicare benefits AND the tax cuts perhaps things would not be so bad – WHERE WAS YOUR OUTRAGE THEN! I do not want the GOP in power EVER.

    September 17, 2010 09:48 pm at 9:48 pm |
  22. Gary's Thoughts

    Just balance the friggin budget....cut spending, extend the Bush tax cuts and lets get to a balanced budget.

    September 17, 2010 09:48 pm at 9:48 pm |
  23. Confused?

    Can someone in the Republican party explain to me how the dems are to the left of Europe? For the record, I am a dem and a liberal and I have been frustrated to find a party in power deliver a stimulus with 1/3 tax cuts, completely watered down health care bill, republican war strategy, financial regulation reform that seems as if it was written by the banks and now talk of extending bush tax cuts, all with continuing Republican overspending [can we just admit that Clinton, a Democrat, showed fiscal restraint, while I cannot recall a Republican who did in the last 50 years]. I understand it is politics to say the Democrats are to the left of Europe, but can they at least do one thing that is left wing. In all honesty, I think it bothers me more that the strategy of saying someone is liberal or left wing works so well in spite of there being no evidence whatsoever to even sniff left wing politics. Yet they all repeat it on every newshow, every freaking week. "Obama drove us into the left ditch." HOW?!?!?!?

    September 17, 2010 09:50 pm at 9:50 pm |
  24. Voldude

    DeMint is the poster child for why the GOP should never be left in charge of anything ever again.

    September 17, 2010 09:54 pm at 9:54 pm |
  25. Kevin Cantu

    So does this mean that McCain, Collins and Snowe are going to be around after November and 2012? What about Lugar? It looks like to me that the moderates within the GOP are done. If this is the route the GOP wants to go it has a long way and what about Steele? Sen. Demitt I would be careful on how you choose your words because if its one thing independents won't tolerate is this country going to far to the right as well. It's bad enough were already to far to the left.

    September 17, 2010 09:55 pm at 9:55 pm |
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