Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Bunning blows up GOP leadership

From James Carroll and Joseph Gerth in the C-J...

It will be interesting to see how the GOP leadership handles Bunning. He's too (fiscally) conservative for their tastes. And he does/says some off-color stuff. But the GOP is usually willing to tolerate anything in their incumbents-- unless it's Ron Paul. Note President Bush's support of Arlen Specter against the far more conservative Pat Toomey in the PA senatorial primary a few years back.

Sen. Jim Bunning all but declared war on his own party's Senate campaign chairman yesterday and threatened a lawsuit if anyone is recruited to run against him in next year's Republican primary....

[Sen.] Cornyn [head of the National Republican Senatorial Committee]...met with Kentucky Senate President David Williams, who has not ruled out challenging Bunning in next year's GOP primary.

Cornyn described it as "a courtesy visit" and said his committee supports Bunning. He said he knew that some Republicans wanted Bunning to retire, but added that "as long as he says he is running I will be supportive of him."...

Bunning said that if a candidate was recruited by the committee to run against him in a primary he would file a lawsuit.

"Support of incumbents is the only reason for (the committee's) existence," Bunning added. "So if they recruited someone and supported them in a primary against me, I would be able to sue them because they're not following their bylaws."

Asked how he could repair his relationship with Cornyn, who decides where the committee spends its millions in Senate races, Bunning responded: "Why do I have to fix it? The NRSC never helped me last time. So why should they help me this time?"...


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