May 17th, 2009
12:20 PM ET
14 years ago

Cheney, Limbaugh, Gingrich not hurting GOP, Boehner says

WASHINGTON (CNN) – As the Republican Party struggles to right itself after being caught up in rough political seas, House Minority Leader John Boehner said Sunday a slew of recent and sometimes controversial comments and media appearances by a trio of high-profile Republicans is helping his struggling party.

“Having these voices out there, it doesn’t hurt us, it helps us,” Boehner told CNN’s John King on State of the Union when asked about former Vice President Dick Cheney, former Republican House Speaker Newt Gingrich, and conservative radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh.

“If we’re going to show the American people that we’ve got a better way forward, having a chorus of voices out there, I think is helpful to our effort,” added the Ohio Republican.

The GOP congressional leader had no illusions about how much work his party has to do.

“We’ve got a long way to come back. We’ve had two disastrous election cycles.”

And Boehner praised the National Council for a New America, a recent GOP effort spearheaded by House Minority Whip Eric Cantor that is intended to rebrand the GOP and help it reconnect with voters.

“All the wisdom in America isn’t found here in Washington, DC,” Boehner said of the new GOP group. “There’s nothing wrong with going out and listening to the American people, sharing our principles, trying to find ways to address the concerns of the American people. But address those concerns with solutions, solutions that are built on Republican principles. So, I think this dialogue is important.”

Boehner left open the possibility that in the run-up to the 2010 midterm elections, the GOP might use something like Gingrich’s 1994 “Contract with America” to brand its message to voters.

Filed under: Dick Cheney • GOP • John Boehner • Newt Gingrich • Popular Posts • Rush Limbaugh • State of the Union
soundoff (248 Responses)
  1. Observer in Oregon

    Republicans are self destructing, they have no new (good ..) ideas and lack fresh thinking.. Well politics is dirty so either party is no good. I sure agree with there fiscal conservatism, I don't want to pay more taxes but I do want to pay enough to keep the country running. I loved when bush cut our taxes but wasn't aware that he was pulling a fast one by borrowing and spending.. Thats not conservatism.. that's cheating.. Sure I didn't pay the taxes under bush but my kids and grand kids have to.. The religious fanaticism that I seen under the republicans is the biggest turn off for me. The republicans need to re-innivate and get back to there roots .. only then would people like me will ever think about voting for them...

    May 17, 2009 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  2. Jillie

    Those silly Republicans just don't get it!

    May 17, 2009 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  3. fharlass

    Bohner knows well that if he crosses the defacto head of the GOP (Limpbo)-he too will be the subject of hate radio. In terms of the GOP making a come back with the same message of hate-fuggitaboutit. The true leaders of the GOP (in the followig order): Limpbo, Levin, Hannity, Savage, Coulter then way down the line are the rank and file repubs in congress that take their marching orders from hate radio.

    May 17, 2009 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  4. gerry

    Thank god for people like this in the republican party. I am thrilled that these losers take every chance they get to push their supporters away. Its getting to the point where the only republican supporters i know.. are the same people who say dinosaurs didnt exist. This is the first time ive ever really appreciated how ignorant republicans really are. How can something that used to be so frustrating, become so refreshing?

    long live joe the plumber and sarah palin! Add those idiots to the list.

    May 17, 2009 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  5. Justin Seine

    House Minority Leader John Boehner's permanent tan explains his behavior and his dogma. He's been out in the sun too long, way too long!

    May 17, 2009 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  6. Kerry

    Cheney, Limbaugh, Savage, Hannity, Coulter, Bachman, et al are important to the right wing. They say the extreme views that many of the party believe but cannot announce because they would be chastised publicly for it. They say what many believe is true in their hearts. They hate, prejudice, and inflammatory charges they make attract some to the party and gives them a place where their views are accepted. At the same time, the party leaders can dismiss the most outlandish statements, distancing themselves from it, but all the while, embracing the comments for the extremists voters who continue to support their side. Cheney, Limbaugh, and the rest are not only important; they are essential to the Republican party as they are the ones who keep the farthest-right whackos in the tent.

    May 17, 2009 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  7. Ryan Wing

    A high profile Republican says other high profile Republicans are only capable of good. How ... normal.

    May 17, 2009 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  8. Drew in Wisconsin

    Bonehead would have made a great music director for the Titanic's chamber orchestra.

    Of course whatta you really expect him to say, "yes, we're in a complete state of disarray thanks to these loudmouths?" No, that he saves for private conversations.

    May 17, 2009 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  9. jon d

    i love reading the comments of these ignorant snipes here on cnn. rush, newt, cheney and boehner have more sense then the whole heap of you liberal whackos. look at history, liberalism drives americans to become more dependent and less free. what conservatives like limbaugh, gingrich and the rest want is less intrusion by the government into personal and private sectors so that all americans are free to prosper and make the most out of their abilities and gifts. the hate that is spewed forth by the left in this country gets us nowhere, and all that obama is going to accomplish is driving our economy into the ground and weakening our defenses. GOD BLESS RUSH!

    May 17, 2009 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  10. Bill or Vin from Philly

    He right, it not hurting what left of the republican party

    May 17, 2009 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  11. Bob H.

    The voices of the GOP these days leave one wondering if the REAL Republican Party will ever be a decent forced in this country again. Limbaugh, as GOP spokesman, shows how sick and deacyed the thinking has become. The current GOP has no relationship to the party as we knew it up to the time of Nixon. President Ford's administration marked the end of the historic GOP – the GOP that put nation and its people first rather than pocket-books. There's not one iota of thought that can be called "positive" about embarrassment to the GOP and to broadcasting in general. And, if you lived through World War Two, you have to hold your breath for a moment – the echo of Limbaugh and those extremists echo way too much of what used to come from Radio Berlin. These ARE dangerous people; they are contrary-Americans! We who have have been brought up to love this nation via participation in the Republican Party can see no relationship between basic GOP policies and what is being called "The Republican Party" today!
    Listen to Limbaugh and you listen to radicalism such as this country has not experienced since to chants of the Bund!


    May 17, 2009 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  12. Sam

    You don't think so? Well I am not even going to remotely think about voting for the GOP as long as Rusty Limbo is associated with the GOP. See this is yet one more proof of how bad things are for the GOP. They do not know who and what their problem is even when people (like me tell them!)

    May 17, 2009 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  13. Florence

    Oh just jump into sara's tanning boot, you narcissistic pretty boy.

    May 17, 2009 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  14. deb

    as far as I am concerned, Chaney and Limbaugh do get the attention of the media. May not agree with them but they get the message out of alternative thought. Right now, THAT IS GOOD. Most of the media ignores people who are not of a liberal point of view so will take their point of view.

    I never watched Fox network untill last Fall.....the difference of what they report vs cnn, nbc, cbs, msnbc, etc is as different as night and day. all I want is information so I can decide....may not agree with all of fox but I get info. I see chaney and limbaugh in the same light. they get other points of view out there.

    May 17, 2009 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  15. J.L.L. Indiana

    Most of the republicans remaining in Congress are right wing extremist from the south. Cheney, Gingrich, and Limbaugh are preaching to the dittoheads. Soon that is all that will be left of the republican party. How are they going to win an election with less than 20% of voters.

    May 17, 2009 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  16. John

    I agree whole heartedly with Boehner. A party should stand on it's principles, not polls. The Republicans are finally getting back to basics and not trying to be all things to all people. Conservativism is not exclusive to any one group. That message will finally and decisively be heard in the coming years. Nothing like a big swing to the left to remind traditional thinkers what they are giving up by compromising their principles.

    May 17, 2009 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  17. Samuel M

    The Republican Party has rightfully gone to Hell in a hand basket. Good riddance. Hey Boehner! Good job alienating more or the american people! Jerk.

    May 17, 2009 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  18. Dakota, Lake Stevens, WA


    If House Minority Leader John Boehner believes that "D-i-c-k The Whip" Cheney, Newton Gingrich and "Flush Rush" Limbaugh are helping the Republican Party, then John Boehner needs psychotherapy.

    I am a moderate Republican; and yes, we do exist. I have an intense dislike for the mean-spirited, uncaring, almost evil, philosophies of Cheney, Gingrich, "What's Her Name?," and Limbaugh. They need to quit their tired old ethics, and fade into obscurity.

    May 17, 2009 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  19. Dixon

    Speaking of "out of touch," it seems that the lead Republicans are all about being right and avoiding being wrong no matter what.

    I crossed over to the Left before this election, acknowledging that our candidate, John McCain and his pick, Sarah, were absolutely clueless about solutions to the disaster waiting to happen.

    Conservative Christians have become hate filled, judging fanatics, complaining, condemning, and selfishly claiming that only they have a monopoly on God's view.

    If something is broken, such as the Republican Party, it should be buried, and recreated, but this time, with the focus on what is truly best for Americans. Get real, Cheney, Limbaugh, and Boehner have sacrificed thousands of ex republicans because of their inability to see what is actually best for us. Resisting is not the answer. Support or come up with solutions.

    I thank God that I saw His Light and denounced the Republican Party that is destined for destruction.

    May 17, 2009 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  20. Too True For You

    No! No! No! No! All of you here have it all wrong! Boehner is right – they ARE helping the republican party! They help weed out the weak links, like moderates, and those that try to actually practice bipartisanship. They help polarize the population by distilling out the ardent remnant willing to go to any lengths to defend the circa 1957 conservative way of life! They are doing a GREAT job! How could all of you be so wrong?

    It's like Boehner said “All the wisdom in America isn’t found here in Washington, DC,” it's in South Florida with Rush. They know what they're doing!

    May 17, 2009 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  21. Rand Paul for Senate 2012

    Boehener`s kidding right?

    May 17, 2009 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  22. JC

    I say, if GOP wants to pursue with this Pelosi issue, lets pursue investigation with Bush and Cheney as well. I'm sure that would be alot more fun.

    May 17, 2009 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  23. Be A True Leader

    House Minority Leader John Boehner's quote reflects the Republican Out-Of-Touch. I am no longer consider myself as a Republican because of him and others who "won't admit their mistake". Vice President Dick Cheney, former Republican House Speaker Newt Gingrich, and conservative radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh just added more disappointment. It's sad.

    May 17, 2009 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  24. Kevin in CA

    The GOP claims to have the best plan going forward after what we've seen? That's a radical act of rebranding.

    The GOP continues to distill itself down to its final two uber-patriots. Pistols at dawn to decide who's the greatest Patriot of them all! I'm happy to let the GOP join the Whigs and Toris as part of history.

    Time for the Libertarian Party to step up their game and become the next great American political party.

    May 17, 2009 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  25. RCDC

    I live in Canada and am a Canadadian citizen and proud of it. I love lots of things about Amreica as a hole but I laugh my ass off at the stupidity of the GOP. The statement "there's nothing wrong with going out and listening to the American people" was downright stunning. You had your chance, you screwed it up. Now go back to your office and see how you can actually HELP the American people by WORKING with your new goverment instead of trying to convince yourself that your way, your ideas and ideals are the answer. Clearly they are not. RC

    May 17, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
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