EXCLUSIVE: Cornyn Gets Texas Heat Over Crist; Florida GOP Chair Backs Down
posted at 11:20 am on May 21, 2009 by The Other McCain
(BUMPED 12:20 p.m. ET; UPDATE BELOW) Just reported this for The American Spectator:
Key Republicans in Texas are alarmed by Sen. John Cornyn’s decision, as chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, to endorse Florida Gov. Charlie Crist in a contested Senate race 15 months before the GOP primary.
“If they’re going to do it in Florida, what’s to stop them from doing it everywhere?” a Texas Republican source told me late Wednesday. “It’s absurd that the NRSC is doing this. It’s an insult to the base.”
You can read the whole thing, including the news that Florida State Republican Party Chairman Jim Greer has backed down from his earlier endorsement of Crist. The St. Petersburg Times beat me to that scoop:
Republican Party of Florida Chairman Jim Greer, facing intense and growing backlash over meddling in the U.S. Senate primary, is backing off.
In a letter to party supporters [Wednesday], Greer defends his actions but said the party is now “neutral” in the contest between Charlie Crist and Marco Rubio.
There will be more news breaking on this story, which involves a lot more than the Florida Senate race. The question at stake, according to Aaron Marks of The Next Right, is “Who ultimately controls the GOP, the grassroots or the machine?” When the machine is run by “Chairman Bozo,” as Florida conservative Javier Manjarres calls him, the odds favor the grassroots.
Of course, conservative bloggers never do reporting because, as liberal blogger Matthew Yglesias says, “What the right lacks are people with the skill to do the job.” And since Yglesias went to Harvard, he knows everything.
UPDATE 12:20 p.m.: In his statement backing down from the Crist endorstment, Florida GOP chairman Greer “is glossing over the fact that he tried to use party rules to get Rubio knocked off the ballot,” says Erick Erickson. “He is also ignoring the fact that he made clear at the RNC meeting that the Republican Party of Florida would be supporting only Crist in the Senate race and only McCollum in the gubernatorial race.”