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Delaware Senate primary: The GOP reacts to Christine O'Donnell's win

By Matt DeLong

Updated at 2:10 p.m.

Washington is abuzz after tea party favorite Christine O'Donnell stunned the Republican Party with her upset of Rep. Mike Castle (R-Del.) in the Delaware GOP Senate primary on Tuesday. Now that she's the GOP nominee, the million-dollar question is, can a very conservative Republican win in a blue state?

No way, says GOP strategist and former Bush adviser Karl Rove, Tuesday night on "Hannity."

"I'm for the Republican, but I got to tell you, we were looking at eight to nine seats in the Senate. We are now looking at seven to eight in my opinion. This is not a race we're going to be able to win."

Rove finds himself in a lonely place, as many GOP leaders fell in line behind their nominee.

Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, whose endorsement is widely credited for O'Donnell's victory, called for party unity in a pair of tweets late Tuesday.

Primary debate is over; time 4unity is now bc time 4choosing is near. Attitudes of unsuccessful campaigns r contagious,make'em worth catching
Competitive primaries=great 4 voters! Strong msgs sent&recvd tonite; congrats 2 the victors; Now, Commonsense Constitutionalists, let's unite

In an interview with the Associated Press, O'Donnell herself called for peace after what she called "Republican cannibalism."

"We have to rise above this nastiness and unify for the greater good, because there's a lot of work to be done and there are a lot of people who want to get involved if the Republican Party would," she said. But, she added, she didn't need them to win: "It is doable without the support of the Republican Party."

The National Republican Senatorial Committee is behind O'Donnell all the way, said its chairman, Sen. John Cornyn (R-Tex.), who added that the committee has already given her campaign a check for $42,000.

"Let there be no mistake: The National Republican Senatorial Committee - and I personally as the committee's chairman - strongly stand by all of our Republican nominees, including Christine O'Donnell in Delaware."

Rep. Mike Pence (R-Ind.), the House's No. 3-ranking Republican:

"I categorically reject that Christine O'Donnell cannot win in Delaware. This is a whole new world, we elected a Republican member of the Senate from Massachusetts."

House Minority Leader John Boehner said somewhat vaguely:

"You have heard me talk all year about the rebellion that is going on in America. I have never seen more Americans engaged in our government in my lifetime."

Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele also got behind the nominee:

"I look forward to electing [Christine] O'Donnell the next senator from Delaware," said Steele Wednesday at a press conference in Washington kicking off the RNC's "Fire Pelosi" bus tour. "We cannot waste the opportunity by tearing each other down."

Conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh dedicated much of his show Tuesday to O'Donnell's upset and bashing the GOP establishment. Here's a sample:

"It's Washington versus the country."

"The same people who said we had to support [Florida Gov. Charlie] Crist told us to support Castle ... Every person they tell us to support is a dud."
"This is about conservatives taking back the Republican Party."
"The big tent has collapsed. The truth is there was never a tent."

What about the man who lost? Will he follow Palin's call for unity and endorse his former opponent? Not a chance, Politico reports:

A senior aide to Rep. Mike Castle told POLITICO the nine-term congressman will not be endorsing newly minted GOP Senate nominee Christine O'Donnell.
"She is a con artist who won by lying about Castle's positions and her own life," said Kate Dickens, a Castle aide. "Out of state support was enough to pull her through yesterday so she can rely on it through November."

Mitt Romney, a likely 2012 GOP presidential contender, jumped on the O'Donnell bandwagon:

"Now is the time for Republicans to rally behind their nominee, Christine O'Donnell," Romney said. "She ran an impressive campaign. I believe it is important we support her so we can win back the U.S. Senate this fall."

By Matt DeLong  |  September 15, 2010; 1:46 PM ET
Categories:  2010 Election , 44 The Obama Presidency  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Ad of the Day: Charlie Crist gets the John Kerry treatment
Next: What is the tea party? A primer

Comments

Kishorgala, you need to read the question Illogicbuster asked: How do you keep the Congress from spending more than we receive in taxes? You did not answer the question. You answered with a math answer, not a governing answer.

The answer is a political one: you cannot control spending unless you elect conservatives who do not like big government and big taxes.

Who is the illogical one?

Posted by: RonKH | September 17, 2010 7:19 PM | Report abuse

I'm waiting for Rove to get off his couch and run for some office so I can vote against him.

1) His boss, George Bush is not a conservative and almost ruined the Republican Party during his eight years -- spending way too much tax payers money.

Bush started our ruinous financial tailspin by bailing out the big banks, starting with his friends at Goldman Sachs, where his treasurer Paulson was from -- and letting its biggest competitor, Lehman Brothers, fail.

Talk about dirty politics, George Bush topped them all, helped by Karl Rove.

2) Rove is not a conservative either. Rove has to be a great strategist in elections in order for Bush to win, especially the second term. But Rove is a RINO, a left-to-center moderate and sounds like a Democrat too frequently.

Get a life, Rove, and leave we conservatives alone. Can't you read the Delaware election correctly? More people turned out for a mid-term election than normally do in a general election. Do you think RINO Castle brought them out? Or was it O'Donnell?

Rove, I used to think you were fairly smart, but you have misjudged the Tea Party folks to your peril.

When we elect a majority in the House this year and the Senate and White House in 2012, you won't be able to find a job with your liberal leanings.

Maybe you can get a job with the soon to be established Obama Foundation for Left-Wing Lovers.

Posted by: RonKH | September 17, 2010 7:07 PM | Report abuse

Why is Karl Rowe not in Prison and who cares what this idiot says:
"I'm for the Republican, but I got to tell you, we were looking at eight to nine seats in the Senate. We are now looking at seven to eight in my opinion. This is not a race we're going to be able to win."

Here is a girl that could run on the fact that she is just like us "Broke" and ruined by the current idiots that are running the USofA into the ground Dems and Republicans alike. They are both responsible for the Financial Meltdown. Including Barrack Hussein Obama the Muslim Leader.

Posted by: urscrewed | September 16, 2010 6:43 AM | Report abuse

Substantial numbers of disaffected progressive Democrat voters staying away + substantial numbers of enraged redneck Teabagger voters flooding the polls = Democrat disaster. Do Rahm Emmanuel and Obama really think that telling progressives "If you don't vote for the Lapdog Republicrat, the Wingnut gets in" is going to play as a mid-term strategy?

Posted by: copito61 | September 16, 2010 6:20 AM | Report abuse

Illogical,

As for the rates, I'd fall on the 90:10 approach that works well in most instances. Some may argue 80:20 works better, but we can refine the final ratios after ranking the 300 million people. Ninety percent of the people pay 10% of the the taxes, and 10% of the people pay 90% of the taxes.

How about that!

Posted by: kishorgala | September 15, 2010 4:12 PM | Report abuse

A quick Q for libs (even ones with sleeves rolled up).

How high does the income tax rates have to be to ensure that congress won't spend more than it takes in thus continuing a ballooning debt? (congress has never done so) And, how would the rate you specify prevent congress from spending more?

If you can't answer, you can't SANELY, argue for higher taxes...

Posted by: illogicbuster | September 15, 2010 1:15 PM
=======================================
The answer is very simple.

The revenue has to equal the expenditure so that there is no deficit.

Thank God, You are an illogic buster and not a logic buster.

May be that had something with the question that wasn't.

Posted by: kishorgala | September 15, 2010 3:59 PM | Report abuse

No sane answers yet...

Posted by: illogicbuster | September 15, 2010 2:47 PM | Report abuse

A quick Q for cons (even ones with sleeves rolled up).

How high does the budget deficit have to be to ensure that congress won't be forced to cut necessary services, including many of those relied upon by the most vehement supposed conservatives, thus continuing a ballooning debt? (congress has never done so) And, how would the cuts you specify prevent congress from harming more hard-working Americans while benefiting the rich?

If you can't answer, you can't SANELY, argue for lower taxes without drastic and harmful cuts to spending...

There -- I fixed it for you...

Posted by: gr8day4bsbll | September 15, 2010 2:07 PM | Report abuse

I'm writing this in California where Meg Whitman just announced she spent an additional $15 million on her campaign for Governor (her total is around $119 MILLION to date)

Now, I just heard the GOP is supporting Ms. O'Donnell and contributing $42,000 to her campaign! I'm a tad underwhelmed at the enthusiasm of their support.

I'm writing this in California where Meg Whitman just announced she spent an additional $15 million on her campaign for Governor (total is around $119 MILLION to date) - so I'm a tad underwhelmed at the

Posted by: shadowmagician | September 15, 2010 2:01 PM | Report abuse

A quick Q for libs (even ones with sleeves rolled up).

How high does the income tax rates have to be to ensure that congress won't spend more than it takes in thus continuing a ballooning debt? (congress has never done so) And, how would the rate you specify prevent congress from spending more?

If you can't answer, you can't SANELY, argue for higher taxes...

Posted by: illogicbuster | September 15, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Republicans embrace another no-nothing candidate who espouses simplistic, dogmatic ideology while Democrats have their sleeves rolled up fixing the mess that Republicans made.

Further to the Right? Further into permanent minority irrelevance!

Posted by: thebobbob | September 15, 2010 1:07 PM | Report abuse

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