Former U.S. House speaker Newt Gingrich is taking real heat over his endorsement of a moderate Republican, Dede Sozzafava, in a special congressional election in upstate New York.
David Keating, executive director of Club for Growth, has taken to a third-party conservative, Doug Hoffman, and rakes Gingrich on the anti-tax group’s web site:
“Gingrich does this all the time,” said Keating. “He does whatever the party committee asks him to. He likes to cultivate this image of being an innovator and a thinker and so on, and then he endorses the most tired, worn-out, special interest-genuflecting candidate you can possibly find.”
Erick Erickson’s RedState is calling for Sozzafava to withdraw.
But this afternoon, on his own web site, the former Georgia congressman pushed back:
The choice in New York is a practical one: We can split the conservative vote and guarantee the election of a Democrat in a Republican seat in a substantial loss of opportunity. Or we can find a way to elect someone who has committed to vote for the Republican leader, has committed to vote against all tax increases, has committed to vote against cap-and-trade, and is a strong ally of the NRA.
In order to stop President Obama and the Democrats in Congress, I would rather see Christie win in New Jersey, Bob McDonnell win in Virginia, and have the Republican, Dede Scozzafava, win the special election in NY-23 so that election night in 2009 is a devastating defeat for the Democrats.
My number one interest is to build a Republican majority. If your interest is taking power back from the Left, and your interest is winning the necessary elections, then there are times when you have to put together a coalition that has disagreement within it.
We have to decide which business we are in. If we are in the business about feeling good about ourselves while our country gets crushed then I probably made the wrong decision.
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