November 24th, 2009
06:16 PM ET
11 years ago

RNC resolution won't 'handcuff' Steele, co-sponsor says

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption=" RNC members have drafted what's being described as a 'purity' resolution."]
WASHINGTON (CNN) - One of Republican National Committee members who helped draft resolution that would prevent moderate candidates from receiving party money said Tuesday that the measure is not intended to challenge to the leadership of Michael Steele, the RNC chairman.

"I think it's sufficiently broad so as not to handcuff him," Nebraska committeeman Pete Ricketts said of the so-called "purity" resolution, which first leaked to reporters Monday.

The resolution, sponsored by Indiana committee member Jim Bopp Jr., proposes a ten-point ideological platform for the Republican party and would require GOP candidates to adhere to at least eight of those points. If not, a candidate be prohibited from receiving financial assistance from the RNC.

Bopp told CNN Monday that the resolution will help Steele avoid criticism from the right-wing of the party. "This resolution will establish standards so that he won't feel obligated to support every Republican and not feel criticized," he said.

Ricketts said the resolution was sparked in large part by the contentious special election in New York's 23rd congressional district, in which a third party candidate, Doug Hoffman, entered the race as an conservative alternative to the moderate Republican candidate, Dede Scozzafava. Conservative activists nationwide rallied to Hoffman's side, eventually driving Scozzafava from the race, which was ultimately won by Democrat Bill Owens.

"NY-23 crystallized for us some of the issues the Tea Party people had with Republican party," said Ricketts, one of the resolution's ten co-sponsors. "We felt like we needed to send a message that we are the party of conservative values. This resolution is one way to demonstrate that we mean what we say."

Ricketts disagreed with the suggestion that the measure is an attempt to purge moderate voices from the GOP.

"It's just the opposite," he told CNN. "What it says is that we are a broad party, that we understand people are not going to agree with us on every issue."

He said the resolution, which could be introduced at the RNC Winter Meeting in Hawaii come January, is still "a work in progress."

Filed under: Michael Steele • Popular Posts • RNC
soundoff (296 Responses)
  1. andrewstl

    mike steele may be the biggest joke of the political year. that says somethiung knowing palin is shooting her mouth at the same time

    November 24, 2009 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  2. Sigh...

    That certainly doesn't sound like dividing the country, being resistant to change and new ideas or being pig-headed at all!

    November 24, 2009 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  3. melvin goombah

    Purity shmurity...these guys don't have a clue either way.

    November 24, 2009 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  4. A. Smith, Oregon

    Any and ALL Republican resolutions to stem the hundreds of millions of dollars that Big Oil, Big Pharma and huge Defense sub-contrators pour into the Republican re-election coffers is doomed to utter and complete failure.

    The Republican party would have to completely cast off its master's puppet strings, and from the ground up, re-invent itself. That is entirely unlikely if not impossible for a organization that is ripe with gross corruption and lack of moral and ethical principles.

    November 24, 2009 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  5. Reed

    And this is why I left the Republican Party.

    November 24, 2009 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  6. Eddie B.

    This has got to be the boldest and most isolating decree I have ever heard come out of the Republican Party. Do you mean to tell me that the Republicans want to convey that there is no room for moderates in their party??!?!? This is outrageous and shows where their party is going. Either you are a far right conservative or you are not a part of the Republican Party. How dare they state we will not support all Republican candidates, but only the far fight conservatives?!?!?! They will lose all moderate and independent vote just to cater to these Tea Party, Rush Limbaugh, Hannity Colmes, Glenn Beck followers.

    November 24, 2009 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  7. GuyInVA

    By the way CNN, where is the "Climategate" story?

    November 24, 2009 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  8. Patriot

    The further radicalization of the Republican Party continues......

    Beware of true believers......

    November 24, 2009 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  9. Peter E

    On the plus side, this 'purity' movement would make republicans more honest, instead of the spineless lying cowards the are now. They SHOULD openly declare 'we are intolerant towards those who are different, we do NOT have pity for those less fortunate, and we worship the almighty dollar.' Instead right now they go back and forth, lying about being 'inclusive' and 'tolerant' only to turn around next day and apologize to Rush Limbaugh for looking weak.

    November 24, 2009 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  10. Fville Non Partisan

    Can we please get a third and or fourth party in this country. I'm tired of all these idiots

    November 24, 2009 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  11. Party Purity = Nazism

    Republicans are digging their own grave to please their fringe elements... They are like a freight train barreling downhill to their own destruction...
    You go, guys!

    November 24, 2009 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  12. Hirotomi Takemitsu

    Sounds an aqful lot like a purge of normal people, replaced by radical ideologues in the mold of Sarah Palin etc.

    I hope that there is an enormous backlash against these right-wing nutjobs, not only in the Republican Party, but throughout the nation.

    I can't believe that Americans (out of their supposed frustration or open dislike for President Obama), would turn to these people.

    The country is doomed if these people (like it or not very similar in tactics to the early Nazi Party, the early Bolsheviks before the overthrow of the Czar, the hardliners in Iran, and the Taliban) ever get back in control (the Congress, Senate, or worse still, the Presidency with a person like George W. Bush, or even Palin).

    November 24, 2009 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  13. Jim

    It should be noted that of the 10 requirements on this list, Reagan would have failed 4 of them.

    And yes, this is a way to purge any moderates and non-ultra conservatives from the party

    November 24, 2009 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  14. carlos, THAT one

    cons ervatives = scum

    November 24, 2009 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  15. Mickey

    Wow, sounds just like what Hitler did, doesn't it? How can ANYONE support a party that wants to sanitize it's members. Before too long, they'll want to sanitize YOU!

    November 24, 2009 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  16. JT the Show Me State College Freshman

    I thought the goal of you guys was to "expand" your party's rearch. Just to let you know, President Reagan hosted the first openly gay sleepover at the white house, after doing some research. He signed a gun control proposition in California. He also did "something" with propostion 6 in California back in his presidency. So that means at the very most, he would get a 7 out of 10, lower than the 8 out of 10 to pass. If you guys go through with this, you will become as significant as the whigs. What happened to the party of Abraham Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt? Just to let you know, Teddy Roosevelt was the one to first to propos the idea of a nationalized healthcare system (single payer non profit). If he were alive now, would you guys call him a socialist?

    November 24, 2009 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  17. Limbaugh is a liberal

    Translation: from now on you can only be a republican if you mindlessly parrot Karl Rove, Rush Limbaugh, or Dick Cheney, without question or thought. Not that any of it is real conservatism. Those guys flip-flop constantly. But you don't need to be consistent to LOOK consistent. You only need to maintain the illusion by opposing whatever the democrats do.
    Food for thought: if you constantly oppose the party that you also accuse of constantly flip-flopping, you need to be a flip-flopper yourself!

    November 24, 2009 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  18. james

    small minded idiots !!

    November 24, 2009 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  19. Kevin

    Yes, a "broad party" that MUST ADHERE to seven of ten things or your out.

    Just keep digging GOP you'll find gold somewhere in that hole.

    November 24, 2009 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  20. Stratmaster

    Good deal. If the GOP whackos start requiring a person to believe exactly what the party leaders believe to be able to run as a Republican, then the moderate conservatives will have to form another party. Maybe the more moderate Dems can join them, and the middle-of-the-road people's party can be born.

    November 24, 2009 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  21. Ray Jackson, Ms

    The only purpose of this resolution is to force anyone that doesn't agree with the worst among them out of the party. I hope it works and even more people leave the party to become Democrats or Independents.

    November 24, 2009 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |

    Stupid Stupid Stupid..........Forget handcuffs, these are chains. How much control is enough for the GOP.

    November 24, 2009 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  23. Grog in Ohio

    Conservatives like to claim liberals are "socialists" or "commies" or even "nazis", completely without evidence, but seriously... what does a party purge remind most of us about?

    November 24, 2009 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  24. Marie MD

    Thank goodness that the conservative repugs are not the majority of this country and will never be.
    They are sooooooooooo out of touch with the citizenship that it's laughable.
    Hawaii in January. There's a tough trip to make.
    Better yet, why not Wyoming or Montana where it's cold and try doing it without heat like a LOT of Americans will live this winter.

    November 24, 2009 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  25. Stu

    OK GOP, and this from a GOP member, 100 yrs ago if a woman wore a swimsuit (costume) that was 3" above the ankle it was indecent exposure. Times and standards of what society considers acceptable change. Either a political party, like any other entity, adapts and changes, or it will perish. Democrats have boxed themselves in as the party of welfare, entitlement, taxes, and Hollywood make-believe. Capitalize on that. The usual moral preaching rhetoric is falling on deaf ears, even within the GOP. If you have any hope of revival and survival, you have to catch up with the times.

    November 24, 2009 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
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