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Grand Old Party May Lose Some Guests « The Washington Independent

The record is skipping at the Grand Old Party.

As David Weigel recently reported, conservative bloggers and activists are stoking a rebellion among Republicans who are fed up with the ’s willingness to back so-called “liberal” candidates like Florida Gov. Charlie Crist and Pennsylvania Sen. Arlen Specter — who is now a Democrat, of course, but the NRSC had Specter’s back before he turned his back on them.

In the words of The Washington Examiner’s Editorial Page Editor Mark Tapscott:

The fact that just doesn’t register with Washington GOP establishmentarians is that the Tea Party Protests seen around the country in April were aimed as much against them as they were against the tax and spending policies of Obama and the Democratic Congress.

I covered one of those tea parties. I observed hundreds, possibly a thousand, people, brave driving rain in Annapolis, Md. last month in the biggest protest I’ve covered in the past year. People were angry and, unlike most rallies, they didn’t let the rain stop them from showing up or allowing the organizers to drone on for nearly an hour.

The NRSC’s endorsement of Crist has poured gas on the fire, as evidenced by yesterday’s call-to-action from Erick Erickson, editor-in-chief of the conservative blog, RedState.com. Some Republicans were very happy with the campaign of Florida House Speaker Marco Rubio, an unabashed conservative, to win the seat of retiring Sen. Mel Martinez (R-Fla.).To those folks, Crist’s fatal flaws include his support for the economic stimulus package and the tax hikes that have occurred on his watch.

From Erickson:

Friends, the Republican establishment’s favoritism toward liberal candidates continues. The National Republican Senatorial Committee just officially endorsed tax-hiking, affirmative action-loving liberal Florida Gov. Charlie Crist over conservative rising star Marco Rubio. Meanwhile, rumors are flying that the NRSC might soon do likewise in several other states.

I am sick and tired of the GOP taking my money and telling me to shut up while they spend my money on pro-abortion, big-spending tax hikers.

Now it seems they’ve found a way to channel their wrath. Erickson’s letter directs dyed-in-the-wool conservatives to take their money and run from the Republican Party, and instead give it to The National Conservative Campaign Fund. The NCCF says it’s goal is to elect “as many bona fide conservatives as possible to Congress — conservatives who won’t abandon their principles once they get to Washington, and whose voting records will consistently favor limited government, lower taxes, a strong national defense, and the just interests of the United States.”

The NCCF site says 2 of 5 Senate candidates it backed were elected last year, as were 15 of 45 House candidates. Not a bad track record, buts the roughly $200,000 the group raised last year for 2008 candidates pales in comparison to the nearly $6 million the Republican National Committee raised last month alone.

If Erickson’s effort takes off however, will the GOP be able to win elections without the support of the conservative base?

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