July 28th, 2009
01:04 PM ET
12 years ago

Voinovich: The GOP's 'being taken over by Southerners'

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/02/06/art.getty.voinovich.jpg caption="Ohio Republican Sen. George Voinovich is not running for re-election."] WASHINGTON (CNN) - Republican Sen. George Voinovich, who is not running for re-election next year, told a newspaper in his home state of Ohio yesterday that Southerners bore a good share of the blame for his party's lagging popularity.

"We got too many Jim DeMints and Tom Coburns," Voinovich told the Columbus Dispatch Monday. "It's the Southerners….

"They get on TV and go 'errrr, errrrr,'" he said, according to the paper. "People hear them and say, 'These people, they're Southerners. The party's being taken over by Southerners. What they hell they got to do with Ohio?'"

Oklahoma Sen. Tom Coburn and South Carolina Sen. Jim DeMint have been top targets for Democrats. Over the past few weeks, the Democratic National Committee has released spots slamming DeMint, including a tough ad that rips the senator for saying defeat of the administration's health care bill would "break" President Obama.

Filed under: George Voinovich
soundoff (293 Responses)
  1. a bit odd

    we are witnessing the last days of the GOP

    hopefully the independants will rise from their ashes

    July 28, 2009 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  2. Bonnie Kimberly

    Narrow minded people come from all over America. But the south has a way of mixing God country and the rebel yell into all they do. I am sure there are epole all over America with thier backward look at things but they tend to pool up in places like Texas Oklahoma North Carolina Alabama and Mississippi. I guess this will never change as long as thier party talks about polictical matters in the context of bible based teaching. These folks are still trying to say dinasours lived along side man and that evolution should not be taught in schools.

    July 28, 2009 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  3. HHH

    I hope we get rid of Tom Coburn, too. He is the Party of No by himself and he makes Oklahoma look as "bright as he is." NOT!

    July 28, 2009 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  4. Bill Sampson

    The south, especially the former Confederacy, has historically been resistant to progress or change. The GOP now represents that unfortunate mind set.

    July 28, 2009 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  5. Jeff, Huntington Beach, CA

    The Republican message is nothing but ignorant scare tactics. All they present is lies, deceit, slander and spin. Such is the self righteous "God" party, and anybody who believes their talking points is a fool.

    They are well on their way to ruining this country if fools continue to but their lies.

    July 28, 2009 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  6. mj

    way to go Senator ...............................

    July 28, 2009 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  7. Average Dude

    Now please tell us something else we don't know already, Mr Voinovich.

    July 28, 2009 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  8. kevinindallas

    I live in Dallas, the home of GW Bush, this used to be a solid republican town. But as the "southern" religious conservatives took over the republican party, many moderate people, myself included bolted the party and became Democrats. Dallas, once a bastion of republicanism, is now a SOLID democratic town and county.

    July 28, 2009 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  9. Dennis

    I guess he never wants to run for national office. You cannot win without getting some of the South.

    July 28, 2009 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  10. joel palmer

    You'll know it's safe to be from the South when they lose the rebel flags and stop refighting the Civil War (they lost). In the menatime, they need to stop being sensitive to justifiable crticism of their Illiteracy, pverty, obesity, poor health care, idiotic labor laws and the fact that most of their family trees don't branch. The steroptypes of the south are rooted in truth and fact'
    Hell they're still trying to make a living growing tobacco, fercrissake!

    July 28, 2009 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  11. Roger

    Voinovich: The GOP's 'being taken over by Southerners'

    The GOP'S 'being taken over by Idiots' đŸ˜›

    Actually, The Idiot Organization is being take over another bunch of Idiots

    July 28, 2009 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  12. John

    Too many politicos that are loyal to party first and the American public last. That is until they decide to get out of politics. Suddenly their brain re-engages and they're free to speak their mind. In the last two elections the citizens told the GOP to use their mind a little more often.

    July 28, 2009 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  13. gary

    being born in canada and living in the united states for the past thirty years and travelling all over the states i can honestly sat the nicest people i have met are from the south they are friendly and hospitable unlike the northern rude snobby people when i retire i will defintly move down south

    July 28, 2009 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  14. Marc

    So I guess since the south has taken over the GOP. we can blame northern and western liberals for taking over the democrat party huh? It must be the case becasue it is the northeast and west coast that stand to benefit the most as Obama marches on with his socialist agendas.

    July 28, 2009 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  15. Billie

    It is a strange article. Truthfully, most of what afflicts the GOP seems to be idiocracy, and this article is another example of it. Repeating the same stupid things over and over, hoping that the rest of the jarheads pick up on it, repeat it, and hope it makes its way into mainstream where we can all have a good laugh at how backward & ignorant they've become. THAT'S WHY THEY LOST THE WHITE HOUSE. Ignorance, bigotry, good ol' boys' club, refusal to move forward, clinging to the past & outmoded ideas, and overt religiosity to cover their transgressions. Their reactions to Obama's proposals on healthcare reform are some shining examples of how pathetic the GOP have become. The fact that they've made Rush Limbaugh their hero is another example.

    July 28, 2009 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  16. Ken

    Appears to me Senator Graham is the only one who is looking outside of the box. GOP, you may want to follow his lead.

    July 28, 2009 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  17. ANDROLOMA, Commerce City, Colorado

    Too bad we can't all go back to being Americans...

    July 28, 2009 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  18. teacheng

    This is a weird comment. But it comes from a fear of the GOP becoming a regional party, which it is. What the Senator is so poorly saying is that a small group of people with very limited concerns has hijacked what was once a much 'bigger tent.'

    What many Southerners don't understand is that the northeast and west coast are much more heavily populated. Those areas need to be appealed to to win. If the Hispanic vote takes over Texas, as it eventually will, that will be the end of Republicans as a national party.

    The purists in the GOP don't want to change their 'values,' but if they don't open themselves up to other ideas and types of voters, they will end up eating themselves.

    July 28, 2009 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  19. Mark G

    Same to you buddy-ro – who needs self-righteous yankees such as yourself? There are plenty of rednecks in Ohio who's English ("we got too many..." "they got to do...") ain't too good either. (comment from a Southern Democrat). I concur with Cecilia. And to Shawn – actually, conservative Southerners make life difficult for both parties and are very relevant in shaping policy. You may disagree with the conservatives' views, but they must be contended with none the less.

    July 28, 2009 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  20. They Call Me Forrest

    Too many obnoxious, self-righteous, hypocritical Southerners .... and not all Southerners are obnoxious, self-righteous and hypocritical so don't everybody get mad at me.

    Stupid is as stupid does

    July 28, 2009 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  21. Zap

    Well, I suspect he is refering to the leaders of the religious right mainly found in the southern states. It is all political. They are saying what will get them re-elected in thier states. Voinovich is simply pointing out the fact that such political ramblings are demeaning the GOP, failing to include more centralized citizens under the Republican's "tent". Voinovich is not running again so he has no reprocussions to contend with. Letting the cats out of the bags doesn't do him any damage đŸ™‚

    July 28, 2009 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  22. Bob

    Hope you don't have any presidential ambitions, Voinovich.

    July 28, 2009 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  23. sonny chapman

    He finally realizes that the Raciasts ,homophobic,
    male pigs didn't just disappear. They've become Republicans thanks to Nixon's "Southern Strategy" in 1968.

    July 28, 2009 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  24. munchmom

    Hey senator, I am a Southerner and have been all my life. I am PROUD of it!! But I would think that if you really wanted to know demographics of the area as far as political party affiliation, you would need to do some foot work before making such broad statements. And just because I am from the south doesn't mean I am stupid, talk funny or run around barefoot and pregnant all the time. I am a well-educated, hard-working woman who just happens to live in the south. And besides, even if you live in the south and have not had the good fortune that I have had, that doesn't mean that you aren't a smart, well-educated person either. Education is earned a lot of different ways. Tell me, sir, how were you educated? Obviously you hold some prejudices against us southerners.....so maybe part of your education was lacking!

    July 28, 2009 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  25. Shucks

    I think all the republicans should Pray about it's future. We all know how well that worked for Palin. Maybe "god" isn't real happy with the republican philosophy right now, considering that most hate groups in this country view themselves as republicans. How "christian". LOL

    July 28, 2009 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
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