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. Ex-NC-Pub

    With their stringent laundry list litmus test, the Pubs are starting to sound like a new arm of the Taliban.

    November 24, 2009 06:07 pm at 6:07 pm |
  2. Donnatella

    Aren't the republicans always preaching about somebody taking their freedoms, this is the most incredible thing I have ever heard, what is wrong with these people have they truly lost it, I guess they don't realize that it is a whole country out their not just birthers and teabagers if this is their new aproach it is insane

    November 24, 2009 06:07 pm at 6:07 pm |
  3. Ed, Santa Fe, NM

    what a pack of right-wing nutters..... Steele and company give new meaning to lunatic fringe.....

    November 24, 2009 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  4. Jason King

    The delusion that so many of you are laboring under (the ones who AREN'T merely kneejerk Liberals who will boo anything Republican or Conservative like the crowds in the Colliseum– and wishing you could see the lions eat the Christians again), is that you have bought into the Liberals' little wordplay. Any Republican who is actually a Liberal gets labeled "Moderate"– making Conservatives, ipso facto, extreme Right Wing nuts. In other words, if you don't believe a woman shoudl be able to murder her baby at will, if you don't think that marriage means anything, if you are for fighting the war this nation is embroiled in, against those who attacked her, and if you believe in God, you are AUTOMATICALLY a Far Right "Wingnut". This is what the Republicans are finally FINALLY trying to deal with. They are at LAST making an attempt to ensure that when you vote for the Republican candidate you are actually getting a Republican. That's called truth in advertising. No wonder it has infuriated the Liberals... they hate truth whatEVER form it takes! LOL

    November 24, 2009 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  5. midwest

    Purity resolution? Sounds like the same drum beats of the right wing in Germany during the 1930s. Will there be mandated outstreched arm salute to go along with that resolution? Maybe a Sieg heil!

    November 24, 2009 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  6. Bob of Lompoc

    These ten points of Republican Loyalty have the aroma of Boss Limbaugh all over them. What a bunch of lemmings these Republicans have become. Idiots !

    To borrow from Albert Einstein: "The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has it's limits".

    By next week there will be only 19% of Americans who admit they are Republicans.

    November 24, 2009 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  7. vigor

    The GOP is more like the Communist Party than any other.

    Party Loyalty before the good of the country.

    November 24, 2009 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  8. Perusing-through


    1) – be against thinkers with an independent view on a single issue,
    2) – be against Catholics, Jews, and other non-protestant faiths,
    3) – be against citizens that cherish privacy, liberty, and freedoms to choose,
    4) – execute violent reprisals against those it does not like (ala Philippine politics),
    5) – advocate the use of any scandalous method to attain its goals.

    November 24, 2009 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  9. josephine

    This is the only way we can get our country back. Everybody has got to be on the same page. Just look at the Dems now, they've got the majority in both houses and yet there is nothing but bickering amongst themselves and nothing gets done for the American people. Repubs in 2010 and 2012.

    November 24, 2009 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  10. DJ

    The Republicans are hijacked by uneducated, hate-mongers devoid of any real ideas. All they do is start wars based on lies and pander to the big $ lobbyists.

    November 24, 2009 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  11. AP in Illinois

    It's hypocrisy to call Democrats Socialist when the real Nazis are in the Republican party. I don't know why anyone would want to vote for people who are going to try tell you how to think. Diversity is not something the GOP embraces. Ideological purity is a sure road to ruin for the party of Lincoln.

    November 24, 2009 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  12. Donnatella

    There is no such thing as a pure republican.

    November 24, 2009 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  13. mike.texas

    And if any Republican votes for their constituency over the party, that would also be a sin.And vote against Obama even if its for the good of the country.

    November 24, 2009 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  14. LookAtTheseHands

    The GOP is in shambles.

    I hope all the sensible people that considered themselves Republicans (moderate or not) before the travesty that was the last election defect to the Libertarians or start a new party based in reality and grounded in fiscal conservatism.

    November 24, 2009 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  15. Beth

    So that purity test should only fit about 15-20% of the population then. I wonder how they expect to win without the moderates and the independents?

    November 24, 2009 06:15 pm at 6:15 pm |
  16. Mitch

    Wasn't there a party in Germany once that wanted purity? Whether it's racial or idealogical, I guess this is the end of America being a cultural melting pot.

    Imagine what will happen if they regain power?!!!

    November 24, 2009 06:15 pm at 6:15 pm |
  17. Frank

    "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."

    They tolerate disagreement on up to two issues!

    November 24, 2009 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
  18. Chuck

    Awesome. This is going to make the Republican party even more radio-active. This is going to further limit them to one race, one region, one religion. (Steele doesn't all.)

    This is good for everyone. Sooner or later something like this will happen with the Democratic party. When it does...we'll be looking at a 4 or 5 party system. Nothing but good can come from that.

    "purity" sounds an awful like something that would be proposed in the 60's. Have the Rep's learned NOTHING?

    November 24, 2009 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  19. Old Joe

    Just as nature has Natural Selection, why don't wehave an IQ test for polititians ???

    November 24, 2009 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  20. Lenny Pincus

    Reagan also ran huge deficits and tried to balance them by increasing "fees," so that makes six out of ten that he failed. He was also divorced which is outlawed by the Bible, but Southern Baptists lead the nation in that category so that hypocrisy is already firmly rooted. Funny thought. The right wing nuts keep comparing us with the Weimar Republic and the rise of Nazism, but they are the ones bedwetting over every conspiracy, appealing to the middle class xenophobia and nationalism, using propaganda and racism to sway the masses, and getting rich in the process. So add on a purity test. Perfect. Beck/Limbaugh/Palin and now Jim Bopp Jr. (really?) are fitting themselves for Brown Shirts.

    November 24, 2009 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
  21. Steve

    All hail the rise of the Libertarian Party!

    November 24, 2009 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  22. Norm

    What made our country great were the great leaders willing to work together and compromise toward a common purpose. Today the leaders of the GOP are a few hints shy of their first clue on how to keep this country great. The only thing their party can agree on is to twist the truth and then say “no”.

    November 24, 2009 06:21 pm at 6:21 pm |
  23. Buddy Gilmour

    WRT the values our forefathers died for, such as freedom of speech, tolerance of others, and protecting the rights of the minority, I think the GOP has now crossed the line into "un-American". Its really quite shocking to watch a party once famous for its serious thinkers dissolve into incoherence and intellectual depravity.

    November 24, 2009 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
  24. Tom

    good this list of requirements will destroy the party
    i have had enough bye republican party the party of birthers, haters and liers

    November 24, 2009 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
  25. Lou from CT

    Wow – the Republicans bad mouth the Democrats as "socialists" and are about to commit a purge to "purify" their party. Sound strangely dictatorial to me (shade of JOe Stalin and the like).

    The Democrats will gladly welcome the moderate Republicans to their party as the GOP goes swirling down the drain.

    November 24, 2009 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
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