On Saturday, Rep. Thaddeus McCotter (R-MI) discussed the direction of the GOP in an address to the Republican Northeast Conference in Newport, RI. McCotter, who serves as the chairman of the Republican Policy Committee in the House, chided conservative “ideologues” for controlling the party. McCotter explained that these individuals want to “purge” opponents “all the time…because they’re nuts.” He then clarified that his remarks were directed at radical conservatives like Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC):
MCCOTTER: If the Republican Party wants to become its own antithesis, which is an ideological party, we’re going to continue to have these problems. Remember, ideologues, there’s a reason why they purge all the time — it’s because they’re nuts. Hope the ideologues weren’t listening. If, however, as I said before, we understand that we represent constituencies and America is a vast country full of a variety of opinions and peoples, way of life, then we will get where we need to go. As for the attitude of the Senator from South Carolina that it is better to have fewer friends than more, that’s easier to say in South Carolina than Detroit.
Before Sen. Arlen Specter (D-PA) left the Republican Party, DeMint told a blogger that Specter “cut our knees from under us” and informed Specter personally that he would be supporting his far-right primary opponent. DeMint also told the same right-wing blogger that conservatives in the Senate need to aggressively “go after” other GOP moderates Maine Sens. Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe.