DeMint giving White House candidates 'room to change'
September 1st, 2011
12:11 PM ET
3 years ago

DeMint giving White House candidates 'room to change'

Columbia, South Carolina (CNN) – South Carolina Sen. Jim DeMint said Wednesday he's withholding his coveted presidential endorsement while he waits to see which candidate shows leadership when a deficit reduction plan is presented by Congress' so-called "super committee" debt-limit panel.

DeMint, a tea party booster, said he thought the candidates were "too quiet" when he and other members were voting on raising the nation's debt ceiling earlier this summer.

"They left us hanging out there," said DeMint, speaking to a group of party loyalists in Greenville. "That's not who I'm looking for."

DeMint, who endorsed Mitt Romney in 2008, did not call out the former Massachusetts governor by name, but of all the White House contenders Romney received the most criticism for being slow to respond when the debate was underway in Washington.

The two-term senator said he is not ruling out candidates, including Romney, who re-scheduled an appearance at a New Hampshire tea party to appear at the DeMint's Labor Day Freedom Forum.

"I'm taking a fresh look at the candidates. I'm giving them room to change," said DeMint.

But how the White House hopefuls respond to the 12-member commission charged with coming up with a plan to reduce the deficit another $1.5 trillion over the next decade will influence the conservative kingmaker's support.

DeMint said, "You're going to find out when this super committee produces its product, whether these candidates are willing to speak up and say, that's not right, you got to stop it."

After the luncheon speech, DeMint punted when CNN asked him if he envisions a scenario in which he would consider endorsing Romney in 2012.

"Right now they've all got a lot of strength so I'm going to keep listening. I want to see how they weigh in on the tough issues," he said.


Filed under: 2012 • Jim DeMint • South Carolina
soundoff (36 Responses)
  1. Rudy NYC

    I hope someone asks Bachmann at these debates about $2 gasoline. The only way to do that is through massive federal subsidies because she cannot change the price of a barrel of oil on the world market.

    September 1, 2011 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  2. PDC

    Hurry up, Demint!

    I need to know who to avoid like the plague!!

    September 1, 2011 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  3. Democrat Class Warfare - Destroying the economy, destroying the country

    Their is no way to stop Congress from being ineffective if they can't work together. So they better find common ground or face the wrath.
    ==================================================================================================
    The Democrats don't want to cut spending but instead raise taxes on fewer and fewer "evil rich people and corporations". As a matter of fact, Democrats would love to INCREASE their insane spending just as they did from 2008-2010. Democrats want the biggest federal nanny state they can possibly create.

    The American people said NO to that in 2010. I do not want my elected representative to "compromise" and accept only a slightly less huge federal deficit and bureaucracy. I want them to "fundamentally transform" the way they do business and do they unspeakable, live within their means and stop bankrupting this country.

    September 1, 2011 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  4. peacelovingtroopsupportingdemocratleaningindependent

    DeMint said, "You're going to find out when this super committee produces its product, whether these candidates are willing to speak up and say, that's not right, you got to stop it."

    Does anyone else see a problem with this statement..... is he psychic? He already knows it is not right and we have to stop it?A prome example of Republicans tunnel vision on making the president fail.... So sad.... so sad.

    September 1, 2011 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  5. Name king

    Here we go folks hold on tight as we swing back into the bush deregulations and tax cuts policies that almost through our nation off the cliff. This time it will be bush policies on steroids with these bunch of lunatics. First of all they want to get rid of the stability of government and leave our faith to the corporations, who's faith is held by the international stock markets. So folks our faith is relying on Greece and italy to survive, because if none of these countries bite the dust America led corporations are going into the pit with them. So brace for this ride and I hope we'll
    come out safe on the other-side, because a man that build his house on a firm foundation, is sure to keep it but a man that build his house upon corporations and stock markets, well we see how devastating that will turn out. Repugs and your side kick teabaggers.

    September 1, 2011 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  6. zip

    Somebody tell this idiot that nothing good ever comes out of South Cooterlina. Wish they would start another rebellion. This time we would finish them permanently.

    September 1, 2011 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  7. BeverlyNC

    Demint's "coveted Presidential endorsement"?? Is that supposed to be a joke? DeMint is a good ol boy white racist with extremist clueless ideas. Seems like an endorsement from him would the kiss of death. I guess it doesn't really matter since NONE of the Republicans candidates are even close to qualified to lead ANYTHING. ALL are LOSERS.

    September 1, 2011 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  8. bb

    Jim DeMint has run his own state into the dirt, and kept it there. What has he EVER done to deserve being quoted? DeMint is one bigoted, anti-business, anti-employment, anti-education, poverty-proliferating disaster.

    September 1, 2011 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  9. MTATL67

    I remember when the candidates and parties would debate the issues and sometime you could learn something you didn’t know before. They would keep the rhetoric to a minimum and civil. The emergence of this extremist/fiscal terrorist group called the Tea party has stripped the respectability of elected officials and removed any civility towards the candidates. They do not promote diversity they promote conformity, think like we do or you are unpatriotic. That kind of extremism thinking, as history proves how some of the most oppressive governments came to power. You can believe what you want but do not ruin my life for your believes. That is why this group is extremely UN-AMERICAN they do not want to allow people to think differently they do.

    September 1, 2011 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  10. diridi

    bunch of thugs and idiots...o.k, that is what Congress stand for........................

    September 1, 2011 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  11. Woody Davis

    Do they also get pointed white sheet with eyeholes...

    September 1, 2011 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
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