(CNN) – Sen. Jim DeMint, the South Carolina Republican who has repeatedly bucked his party’s choice of Senate candidates this cycle, maintains he has helped the GOP's chances of regaining control of the upper chamber.
“I'll tell you this, the only - the only reason we have a chance at a majority now is in large part for the candidates I've been supporting,” said DeMint in an interview that aired Sunday on CNN’s "State of The Union."
“If the Republican Party in the Senate was now symbolized by [Sen.] Arlen Specter and [Florida Gov.] Charlie Crist, we would not have the energy behind our candidates anywhere in the country,” he continued.
DeMint has come under heavy criticism from some members of his party who say he has instead put GOP control of the Senate out of reach with his support of candidates who are not likely to win a general election in November.
The anger boiled over after Republican Christine O’Donnell’s surprise upset over establishment pick Mike Castle in Delaware last week, when one unnamed senior GOP aide told CNN's Dana Bash: "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."
Another GOP leadership aide griped to Hotline On Call that "DeMint is not interested in a majority - he'd rather establish himself as the leader on the fringe."
DeMint's Senate Conservatives Fund directed money to O'Donnell's campaign and numerous other conservative Senate hopefuls who knocked off establishment-backed candidates in GOP primaries this cycle.
In his interview on CNN, DeMint also looked to the 2012 presidential race, saying he’d support a candidate like New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.
“I'm looking for someone that's almost like a Governor Christie in New Jersey who's willing to tell people the hard truth that the federal government can't do anymore, we've got to do less if you want to save our country, and fight the fights against the union bosses,” he said.
“And so, I'm looking for a combination of Ronald Reagan and Winston Churchill, and I know he or she is out there somewhere,” he added.
I used to think Jim DeMint was an IDIOT and now I'm not only sure of it, I am convienced he is the "Evil Twin" to "Half Gov. Sarah Palin", the other half of the IDIOT FORCES.
DeMint is a very dangerous, demented man!
Someone is full of himself.
So I guess if the Repubs take the senate he will want to be majority leader.
Another arrogant politician is who more concerned about himself than the good of the country.
The Republican party has become the regression party.
Good night John Boy!.
Demint and garbage like him are killing the Republican Party.
As he awakens from a restful slumber, he recounts dreams of winning the House and Senate for the "Tea Party."
Donning his tin foil hat and carrying his Obama/Joker sign, he runs into the waiting arms of his American "dream."
Senator DeMint is a little off-base here. He won his nomination under a cloud. Millions of dollars are being spent all over the country to get conservatives elected. The TEA Party has contributed to the losses that were suffered by some very good candidates.
As I read comments from people I can see that our electorate is not well-informed. Some comments are factually wrong and others are based on rumor and not fact. The people are being stirred up but not necessarily in a good way.
There is a little racism attached to what Senator DeMint does. However, I do not see the Gop refuting anything he says. Get people elected at any cost financially and morally.
Not if the right wing nut cases that DeMint is pushing keep talking. They are scaring the heck out of many Americans who otherwise might be won over by the repulbicans! They are fruit cakes!
Vote Republican....the Republicans can and will get our country back on track....stop the liberal democrats from further destroying our great country........Vote for the Republican on November 2, 2010 and November 2012...
I applaud Jim DeMint. I wholly support his position that candidates who lack conservative party purity should not win reelection even if the GOP fails to regain the house and the senate. Go Jim go.