Newt Gingrich offered "a very direct, no baloney" counter to Karl Rove's fledgling effort to field more electable Republican candidates in U.S. Senate races, writing in a piece published Wednesday by Human Events that he is "unalterably opposed to a bunch of billionaires financing a boss to pick candidates in 50 states."
Gingrich also took aim at former Mitt Romney adviser Stuart Stevens for purportedly dismissing the Republican presidential nominee's failures in winning over the Latino electorate.
A new Rove-led group, dubbed the "Conservative Victory Project" — inspired by the failures in 2012 of Republican Senate candidates such as Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock — has set off an internal quarrel in the GOP between the establishment and the party's conservative, tea party wing. Gingrich said that no one should have the authority to "buy nominations across the country," especially Rove who, the former House Speaker noted, "was simply wrong last year." He also elaborated on the piece during a Wednesday morning appearance on CBS, calling Rove's group a "terrible idea."
From the piece:
I am unalterably opposed to a bunch of billionaires financing a boss to pick candidates in 50 states. This is the opposite of the Republican tradition of freedom and grassroots small town conservatism.
No one person is smart enough nor do they have the moral right to buy nominations across the country.
That is the system of Tammany Hall and the Chicago machine. It should be repugnant to every conservative and every Republican.
There is a second practical thing wrong with Rove’s proposal.
He was simply wrong last year. He was wrong about the Presidential race (watch a video of his blow up on Fox election night about Fox News calling Ohio for President Obama). He was also wrong about Senate races.
While Rove would like to argue his “national nomination machine” will protect Republicans from candidates like those who failed in Missouri and Indiana, that isn’t the bigger story.
Republicans lost winnable senate races in Montana, North Dakota, Ohio, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Florida. So in seven of the nine losing races, the Rove model has no candidate-based explanation for failure. Our problems are deeper and more complex than candidates.
Handing millions to Washington based consultants to destroy the candidates they dislike and nominate the candidates they do like is an invitation to cronyism, favoritism and corruption.