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NRCC Chair Threatens Resignation Amid Ongoing Feud With Boehner

by: James L.

Sat Sep 22, 2007 at 1:07 AM EDT

With a barrage of scandals, retirements, and recruitment woes, it's no shock that the National Republican Congressional Committee is not a fun place to work this cycle, but could it really be this bad?  The Politico's John Bresnahan and Patrick O'Connor report that things are getting nasty both within the NRCC and between the committee and House Republicans.  Apparently, House Minority Leader John "Small Price" Boehner is upset with NRCC Chair Tom Cole's stewardship of the organization, and is heavily pressuring Cole to make some significant personnel changes.  Cole has said privately that he would rather resign than bow to such demands.  From the article:

Neither Boehner nor Cole's offices would comment on the meeting or struggle, but Boehner spokesman Brian Kennedy did say the two leaders have "very frank and candid conversations" about regaining a Republican majority.

The Boehner-Cole fight came to a head during a Sept. 10 meeting, which included "a lot of yelling back-and-forth" between the two over the campaign committee's operations and effectiveness. House Minority Whip Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) and Rep. Eric Cantor (R-Va.) also attended but "they didn't say much," said a GOP strategist familiar with the session.

Following the meeting, an angry Cole called together the NRCC staff and told them that if they were not happy working at the committee, they might want to consider leaving immediately, said several GOP insiders. That Cole outburst occurred last Monday, said the sources.

But wait, there's more!

Inside-the-Beltway Republicans have grown frustrated with the NRCC for its unrealistically rosy assessments of an ever-eroding landscape for congressional Republicans.

Lawmakers are frustrated with Cole and his top aides for casting their net too wide by targeting Democratic-controlled seats that Republicans have little chance of picking up next year.

Some also gripe that Cole fails to manage expectations on the Hill when he refuses to acknowledge that the GOP's chances for regaining the majority fade with every retirement or negative news story about President Bush or other scandal-plagued Republican lawmaker.

The most interesting revelation here is that some House Republicans believe that the Cole and the NRCC are "casting their net too wide".  I'd be curious to know which recruitment efforts House Republicans consider to be lost causes.  State Sen. Nick Jordan, who is running against Kansas Democrat Dennis Moore, perhaps?  Or state Sen. David Cappiello, who is challenging Rep. Chris Murphy (D-CT) after his stunning victory over incumbent Nancy Johnson last year?  One can only guess.


James L. :: NRCC Chair Threatens Resignation Amid Ongoing Feud With Boehner
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It's nice to see that without the head of the
whole thing, the body begins to tear itself apart. 

IE Karl Rove is gone, and there is public infighting now.  It's nice.  I'm glad Cole is spreading resources too thin and he is going to make a big scene about it. 

I'm also Glad Boehner doesn't comprehend or appreciate the fifty state strategy. 

Awww, poor guys.
In their defense, they're just taking out on each other the frustration of being in a pretty un-manageable spot. It reminds me of a incompetently-managed musical I was in during college: by the end, everybody was pissed and sniping at each other for every little thing, because the whole business was a lost cause from the start.

Poor Cole
He really did just take on the most shitty job in the country, well, wait second most shitty job, Jon Engsign took on the shittiest.

Tom Cole is a Repub House member from Oklahoma.

Speaking of Cole
I am wondering if the DCCC could persuade former Rep Dave McCurdy who held OK-04 in its current form easily from 1981 to 1995 easily, to run against Cole. 

[ Parent ]
I think
That there's no question that the NRCC had a hard time last cycle in part because - lo and behold - their own chairman had a difficult race, and even looked like he might lose for a bit there. Had he been facing almost anyone other than lunatic Jack Davis, he very well might have. And don't forget that he had to start begging the RNC to prop his own ass up.

If we could give Tom Cole a distraction in his own back yard, that would be gravy. Of course, this is an extremely Republican district (R+13), and I think luring a guy like McCurdy back might be pretty difficult (looks like he's had a pretty cushy life as a lobbyiest for a decade or so). But if McCurdy's ever given any thought to getting back in the game, this would clearly be the time to do it. He'd likely never have a better chance.

[ Parent ]
The fact that Cole nearly lost in 2002
against a pretty liberal Democrat shows that he can definately be beaten.  Although the district is R+13, it has deep Democratic roots, which is shown in the nearly two to one registration advantage Democrats have in the district.  Brad Henry also carried it in 2002 and overwhelmingly in 2006.  McCurdy could probably at least give him Cole a race. 

[ Parent ]
Start a DraftMcCurdy site! Stick up a WordPress blog and a petition (to collect names and e-mails) and you're good to go.

[ Parent ]
I just may
Im not even from Oklahoma, but would be willing to do it.

[ Parent ]
They guy's not even that old for someone whose Congressional career began over 25 years ago.  He's only 57.

[ Parent ]
Younger than Cole!!!
Cole is almost 60

[ Parent ]
I forget
is McCurdy the lobbyist now? or the guy who likes to talk about how Democrats should move to the right? One of them is McCurdy, one is Glenn English.

[ Parent ]
is the head of a car manufacturers group now.  English was an electrical lobbyist.  I don't know which one said Democrats should move to the right.  It was probably McCurdy, but he is probably the best we could do in this district.  He would certainly be a hell of a lot better than that scumbag Cole. 

[ Parent ]
After the pretty cruddy week
Dems and progressives had on the Hill, seeing a story like this couldn't warm my heart more, especially as I am feeling quite content after a supremely delicious Yom Kippur break-fast. This makes the "fights" between Rahm and Dean seem like child's play. Oh, happy happy joy joy!

....they're saying the spat is over, acc. politico.  but for it to go so far as to demand the ouster of the top two staffers is pretty bad no matter how much they try to patch things up now

[ Parent ]

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