“They refuse to learn,” Chris Chocola, a former Indiana congressman who leads the Club for Growth, says of lawmakers who buck the will of right-leaning groups. His group is already seeking or supporting primary challengers for 10 congressional Republican incumbents seeking re-election next fall.
Mainstream GOP groups — such as Karl Rove’s American Crossroads or the party’s formal campaign committees — question their more conservative counterparts’ role, fed up by their outsized influence in shaping the party’s current agenda.
“You have a small group in Congress that has become the surrender caucus,” argues Illinois Rep. Adam Kinzinger. “They’ve surrendered their voting card to the wishes of these outside groups.”
Even more striking, a senior official at the committee called individual Republican Senate campaigns and other party organizations this week and urged them not to hire the firm, Jamestown Associates, in an effort to punish them for working for the Senate Conservatives Fund, a group founded by Jim DeMint, then a South Carolina senator, that is trying to unseat Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the Republican leader, and some other incumbents up for re-election next year whom it finds insufficiently conservative.
“We’re not going to do business with people who profit off of attacking Republicans,” said Brad Dayspring, a spokesman for the committee. “Purity for profit is a disease that threatens the Republican Party.”
The committee has conveyed the same message, privately, to 2014 Senate candidates, the Republican National Committee, the National Republican Congressional Committee (the senatorial committee’s House counterpart), the Republican Governors Association and Mike DuHaime, the chief strategist for Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey, for whom Jamestown also does work.
...If the last line seems obscure, review this scene from "A Bronx Tale."
S.C.F. has been wandering around the country destroying the Republican Party like a drunk who tears up every bar they walk into,” said Josh Holmes, Mr. McConnell’s chief of staff, now detailed to the National Republican Senatorial Committee through the election. “The difference this cycle is that they strolled into Mitch McConnell’s bar and he doesn’t throw you out, he locks the door.”