Tea party group apologizes to Rove for Nazi photo
February 19th, 2013
04:51 PM ET
9 years ago

Tea party group apologizes to Rove for Nazi photo

(CNN) - As if the relationship between the tea party and veteran GOP strategist Karl Rove wasn't stained enough, the Tea Party Patriots apologized Tuesday for blasting out an email with an edited image of Rove wearing a Nazi uniform.

In the original fundraising message sent out Tuesday morning–with the subject line: "Wipe the Smirk Off Karl Rove's Face"–the group said "professional political cronies like Karl Rove are attacking the Tea Party movement."

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"They see people like you and me as a serious nuisance, and they will do everything they can to crush us," the email stated, with a pitch to send an online donation and support the organization.

Tea party Republicans have been in a war of words with Rove ever since he launched another super PAC, this one dedicated to ensuring candidates fare better in Republican primaries. Founders of the group point to six lost Senate elections in the last two cycles due to "undisciplined candidates and subpar campaigns."

"Our object is not to be for the establishment, it's to be for the most conservative candidate that can win," Rove said February 6 during an appearance on Fox News, where he is a paid contributor.

While Rove, the former top political adviser to President George W. Bush and co-founder of American Crossroads and Crossroads GPS, argues the effort is merely an attempt to groom better candidates, some conservative Republicans say the top strategist is trying to shut out tea party-minded candidates. The two sides have been entrenched in a bitter feud over the last two weeks.

However, Jenny Beth Martin, co-founder of Tea Party Patriots, one of the largest tea party groups in the country, apologized for the email Tuesday afternoon, saying the image was crafted by an "outside vendor."

The image, which was attached to a URL link, has been removed from the original email, but the photo was saved by multiple news outlets.

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It was "wrong and we have ordered them to immediately cease further use of the image," she said in a statement, adding that they "did not know about or approve" the manufactured photo.

"We apologize to Mr. Rove," the statement read. "While we may have strong disagreements with him on the future of conservatism, we want to be clear this imagery is absolutely unacceptable and are working to ensure this type of mistake doesn't happen again."

- CNN's Ashley Killough, John King, Paul Steinhauser, Kevin Liptak and Kevin Bohn contributed to this report.

Filed under: Karl Rove • Tea Party
soundoff (50 Responses)
  1. joe dokes

    I am so tired of people playing the Nazi card!

    February 19, 2013 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  2. Woman In California

    This TP trash has yet to issue an apology to the POTUS for their racist, disrespectful behavior but they sure issue them out fast to their own don't they?

    February 19, 2013 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  3. Bootstomper

    The Republican Party,the gift that just keeps giving.

    February 19, 2013 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  4. yanni

    What is this fascination of the Tea Party with the Nazi and Hitler? They called both Rove and Obama Nazi and Hitler of course one gave them the Iraq war the other Health care. I wonder they know what actually is Nazi, Hitler or Benghazi for that matter?

    February 19, 2013 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  5. Sniffit

    Ha...where did they find Rove's graduation picture? And boy oh boy is that the lamest excuse ever given or what? "We're sorry...we didn't see the giant Rove-as-Nazi picture in our email...herp derp dippty derp." LOL

    I'm tempted to point out that the constantly repeated, knee-jerk, almost autonomic response nature of the Teatrolls resorting to the Hitler meme more than suggests a pathological self-identification as victims on par with the Jews in WWII, which is insanely offensive...and, what's more, then link that pathology to the neocon/AIPAC/in-bed-with-Israel foreign policies they all support that resulted in things like the kabuki theater they've created surrounding Hagel's nomination, etc. But I won't go there. /wink

    February 19, 2013 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  6. Anonymous

    The tea party eat their own. What a bunch of crazies. Let's give them Alaska and wailing failing Palin can be their President.

    February 19, 2013 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  7. Sniffit

    Gotta wonder whether Teatroll heads would explode around the country if every comment board on the intertubes suddenly blocked reference to hitler, stalin, nazis, etc. They're like Godwin's little lemmings.

    February 19, 2013 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  8. Joey

    Now who is going to apologize to the nazis?

    February 19, 2013 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  9. DanS

    I love this. Let these fools go pickinicking on each other.

    February 19, 2013 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  10. Lynda/Minnesota

    "the Tea Party Patriots ... "

    A misnomer if ever there was one. There is NOTHING patriotic about the TeaPers.

    Nothing. At. All.

    February 19, 2013 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  11. jkane sfl the gop national disgrace party will be swept out like the trash they are in2014 ?

    What's wrong teahage and teabags ,its your uniformity !!!!!!

    February 19, 2013 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  12. PJ

    Exactly. I was thinking the exact same thing, but you said it better than I could.

    February 19, 2013 05:47 pm at 5:47 pm |
  13. Name ScottyMac

    Of course them calling President Obama a Nazi is hilarious... Nazism is the extreme RIGHT of the Political Spectrum...but of course the Tea Party thinks National Socialist means Communist, which is the extreme LEFT of aforementioned spectrum. Then again TP can't differentiate between socialized and Socialism. One is a Social Justice/Human Rights concept, the other is a political belief. And we wonder why we need more education funding, not less?

    February 19, 2013 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  14. me

    the libefals have yet to apologiize to GWB for publically calling him a nazi and worse. you're all a bunch of children

    February 19, 2013 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  15. Sniffit

    ""the Tea Party Patriots ... "

    A misnomer if ever there was one. There is NOTHING patriotic about the TeaPers."

    Indeed. Patriots live life in the belief that they belong to their country and all it entails, good and bad, not that the country belongs to them and must be "taken back" when a democratic election results in a loss for their candidate.

    February 19, 2013 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  16. Anonymous

    I think Furer Rove is right at home ,after all he is a party member

    February 19, 2013 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  17. Randy, San Francisco

    Tea Party apology is too little and too late. Damage is already done. Typical "swift boating" personal attack used by Republican political dirty tricksters.

    February 19, 2013 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  18. jp

    I think furer rove looks good in his uniform,after all he is a party member

    February 19, 2013 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  19. bajones

    What I find troubling is that the Tea Party has a photo of some Nazi on file ready to be photoshopped and distributed.

    February 19, 2013 06:15 pm at 6:15 pm |
  20. Ambrose Smith

    It's fun to see them turn on each other!

    February 19, 2013 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  21. Sniffit

    I'm suprised it wasn't more akin to most other GOP/Teatroll apoligies we've heard for the past 4+ years...something more like "That upset you, did it? Well, we're very sorry you're a Nazi."

    February 19, 2013 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
  22. Bill

    The teabag contingent continues to divide and fracture an already irrelevant and toxic GOP brand. Keep up the good work!

    February 19, 2013 06:37 pm at 6:37 pm |
  23. The REAL Truth...

    The Conservative in me reluctantly gives the Teapug's some credit for trying to get DC to adhere more closely to the Constitution and reduce Govt. spending. Like most "movements" they have been absorbed and infiltrated beyond recognition. With so-called leadership like "no one 34%, Sarah Palin 14%, Glenn Beck 7%, Jim DeMint 6%, Ron Paul 6%, Michele Bachmann 4%" it's no wonder they have floundered on the rocks of the Grand Obstructionist Party.
    That they have been driven to using Nazi-era pictures with Karl Rove's "picture" is just a Democratic party gift that keeps on giving.
    When is the right wing in this country going to wake up to the reality that they are no longer relevant. They need to re-invent themselves in the next 2 years or they are toast.

    February 19, 2013 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  24. John the Historian

    When do Republicans learn that the Republican party is the party of the extreme right. The Republicans have a base of 4: The Christian Right who want theocracy and a ban on all abortions and want Gays in psychiatric wards, the party of the military-industrial complex who want war with Iran, the party of the corporate elite of Wall Street who want the corruption and the bonuses to continue, and the party of the billionaires who don't want to pay taxes and want foreign bank accounts. When do Republicans learn that the 1950s are over. Look at the demographics of this country. Gay are 6 percent of the vote, 15 percent are Hispanics, 14 percent are Black, 4 percent are Muslim and let us not forget the women vote and the Asian vote. White Confederacy is now over .

    February 19, 2013 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  25. jamison

    Rove is an embarrassment to the Nazi party, the republican party, the birthday party, and to the human race.

    February 19, 2013 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
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