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Tom Cole Watch, Day 1

UPDATE 2 PM EST: At the Republican Conference meeting this morning, NRCC Chairman Tom Cole reportedly accepted blame for the party's loss last night in the Mississippi special election. But in a conference call with reporters a short while ago, Cole seemed to indicate that the blame lay elsewhere.

Asked whether he needed to make any staff changes at the committee, Cole said: "I don't think we've had a staff failure or a personnel failure or even an execution failure." Instead, Cole said the public had lost confidence in the GOP and the real failure was the party's message.

Left unsaid by Cole was that crafting the party message is not his job (whereas staff and execution are). His fellow top Republicans, led by House Minority Leader John Boehner (Ohio), are in charge of message. Boehner and Cole have been butting heads for months now, and their relationship appears near the breaking point.

ORIGINAL POST: Is Tom Cole on his way out?

Exiting a private House Republican Conference meeting this morning just hours after his party lost its third special election in two months, embattled National Republican Congressional Committee Chairman Cole (Okla.) was asked by reporters whether he might leave or be forced out of his job.

"Nobody's talked to me about that yet," Cole said. "But I said -- 'yet.'"

When House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) was asked about potential changes at the NRCC this morning, he said: "I suspect that at the [GOP] leadership meeting today, we'll have a conversation about changes that may be necessary in order to adapt to the environment that we're dealing with. There are no preconceived ideas about what those ought to be, but clearly, we've got to do a better job."

Republican leaders went on high alert last night after Democrat Travis Childers won the race for a GOP-held congressional seat in northern Mississippi, marking the third time Republicans have lost a special election for a congressional seat since March. Cole last night urged all GOP candidates "to take stock of their campaigns and position themselves for challenging campaigns this fall."

Stay tuned.

By Ben Pershing  |  May 14, 2008; 11:30 AM ET
Categories:  2008 Campaign , GOP Leaders  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: What Does It Mean?: Miss. Special Election
Next: What Does It Mean?: Miss. Special Election (Pt. 3)

Comments

The fact that the GOP sent out the heavy artillery in the form of Dick Cheney to drum up support for this long held republican seat, speaks volumes.

Nice to see the reawakening of brain cells in the belly of what was once hard-core red territory.

I hope the GOP gets it's hat handed to it come November. They have destroyed, hijacked our country.

Posted by: Charles Timbus | May 14, 2008 11:59 AM | Report abuse

I thought the republicans had established a norm of being rewarded for failure?

Boner and Cole should soon be rose garden recipients of Medals of Freedom from Bush.

Posted by: Jackson H. | May 14, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

Obviously Dick Cheney is exactly the person you want campaigning for you when he's viewed as some kind of an evil mastermind behind an administration with one of the worst reputations in American history.

Posted by: Rob M. | May 14, 2008 12:43 PM | Report abuse

It's been a long eight years.

Posted by: IowaGlenn | May 14, 2008 12:46 PM | Report abuse

"Cole last night urged all GOP candidates "to take stock of their campaigns and position themselves for challenging campaigns this fall."
------------------

Does that position include a 'wide stance'?

Posted by: theantibush | May 14, 2008 1:10 PM | Report abuse

SPEAKING AS A REPUBLICAN IT IS NO ONES FAULT IN THE REPUBLICAN PARTY, BUT I AGREE WE NEED LEADERS WHO WILL CHALLANGE THE DEMOCRAT ISSUES AND BRING THEM BEFOR THE AMERICAN PUBLIC. THERE IS SO MUCH SPIN GOING ON WITH NO ONE TO GIVE ANY OTHER VIEW. SPEAK UP REPBULICANS YOU HAVE A WINNING PLATFORM.

Posted by: JB | May 14, 2008 1:12 PM | Report abuse

The GOP has secured the Democratics the Presidency for the next 16 to 24 years.

Posted by: Red41 | May 14, 2008 1:13 PM | Report abuse

I think the fact that the GOP sent Cheney down to Miss. to stump shows exactly how out of touch the GOP is. Last time I checked, Cheney's approval rating was about half of Bush's; so who besides the ultra-base of the GOP would be moved by him?

Posted by: Sacrasmotron-3000 | May 14, 2008 1:18 PM | Report abuse

IF WE HAVE 16 TO 24 years of the democrats that would be a miracle, not reality. But we all know democrats do not belileve in miracles or the power of God.They speak one way and vote totally different. I bellieve 4 years will wake up the American people to the hidden sp movement of the democrat party. The facts remain the platform of the democrat party is not the main stream of this country. As much as I dislike McCain , I will hold my nose and vote for him.

Posted by: JB | May 14, 2008 1:20 PM | Report abuse

Tom Cole's office has called my employer's office (in Maine) more than once offering dinners with the President or some sort of bogus award to my employer, who could not be less interested, and when I ask directly if this is a fundraising call (or why on earth they are calling), I get an evasive and somewhat offended reply. I hope he's out and I don't ever hear from his pesty staff again.

Posted by: Deb | May 14, 2008 1:21 PM | Report abuse

The approval ratings of President Bush or VP Chenny is still a lot higher than the Democrat lead congress. Go figure

Posted by: Anonymous | May 14, 2008 1:22 PM | Report abuse

I hope Hillary does as Joe Lieberman and kicks the Democrats right where it hurts the most. Run (I) ticket

Posted by: jb | May 14, 2008 1:25 PM | Report abuse

West Virginia spelled doom for the GOP in Nov. Republicans will not unite under a Mcain banner, I for one won't vote for a traitor, Just read fm 21-77 Evasion and Escape 1965, If you read this and read McShame's own statements on his captivity, you will come to the same. So 12 yrs of Democratic rule? Thanks alot gop

Posted by: RaferJanders | May 14, 2008 1:26 PM | Report abuse

"I bellieve 4 years will wake up the American people to the hidden sp movement of the democrat party."

Special Purpose? Silly Parties? Satin Pants?

Tell us Dems what our "hidden movement" is, JP, and then we'll all know.

Posted by: Peter Principle | May 14, 2008 1:27 PM | Report abuse

If you do not know what SP stands for ask the leader of the Democrat party George Soroson the head leader of the secular progressive movement .
Secular refers to separation of church and state.
Secular progressive refers to the liberal morons who, under the guise of secularism, have acted to remove Christmas and Halloween celebrations from public schools. So the children are forced to say winter festival and harvest party. Oddly, the secular progressives want Jewish and Pagan holidays to be taught and celebrated in school.
They also want the word "God" taken off the money.

Posted by: jb | May 14, 2008 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Other current sp include Harry Ried, Nancy Poloso, Ted Kennedy, Joe Biden, Barack Oboma, Hillary Clinton, Steny Hoyer, about 75% of all democrats believe in this movement read your platform (trail Lawyers) aclu dtc the list goes on

Posted by: jb | May 14, 2008 1:42 PM | Report abuse

satin pants was close I spell it satan pants

Posted by: Anonymous | May 14, 2008 1:44 PM | Report abuse

A Party that is ideologically opposed to government. A Party that doesn't believe "good government" can exist. A Party whose gentle senile great communicator insists that government is the problem, not the solution. This Party took control of the government, handed the running of it over to religious fanatics and corporate thieves. And now they wonder why everything is falling apart??

We now have an answer to the age old question, "how dumb do you have to be!"

Posted by: thebob.bob | May 14, 2008 1:45 PM | Report abuse

A sharing of the wealth by targeting the affluent for most of the government's revenue.
Lax school discipline on American children to promote their so-called liberties.
Naked hostility to religious values and their expression in public.
A "one-world" approach to foreign relations that would prevent the U.S. government from imposing a policy that would benefit America first.
A touchy-feely vision of our society that places individual self-expression and rights over self-sacrifice and adult responsibility.

Posted by: JB | May 14, 2008 1:51 PM | Report abuse

SECULAR= 1. PERTAINING TO WORLDLY THINGS OR TO THINGS NOT REGARDED AS SACRED; TEMPORAL. 2. NOT RELATING TO OR CONCERNED WITH RELIGION (OPPOSED TO SACRED). 3. CONCERNED WITH NON-RELIGIOUS SUBJECTS; SECULAR SCHOOLS.

PROGRESSIVE= 1. ADVOCATING PROGRESS OR REFORM, ESP. IN POLITICAL AND SOCIAL MATTERS. 2. EMPLOYING OR ADVOCATING MORE LIBERAL IDEAS, NEW METHOD, ETC. A PROGRESSIVE COMMUNITY. 3. GOING FORWARD OR ONWARD; PASSING SUCCESSIVELY FROM ONE STAGE TO THE NEXT. 4. CONTINUOUSLY INCREASING IN EXTENT OR SEVERITY AS A DISEASE.

A Secularist is "Carnal In Nature." In other words, that person is lead by his fleshly needs. A Secularist does not believe in God. In fact, these people feel that they "Are God." Secularists are responsible for the mess our country is in today. For example, the expulsion of God from our schools. The rejection of God at Christmas. Are you listening ACLU? The dismantling of the word family as we know it. The Secularists with the help of secular courts in this country, are tearing our families apart.

The homosexual community falls under the rubric of Secularism. Those who support abortion are Secularists. Homosexuals with the help of a Secular court in Massachusetts opened the door to"Legal" homosexual marriages. Residents of the state of Massachusetts can marry those of the same gender. This is secularism at its worst. I say this because worst case scenario finds gay marriages being the law of the land. If that takes place, what happens to the proliferation of the human race? Two men "Can Not Make A Child." "Two Women Can Not Make A Child." I don't care how intoxicated man becomes with his power, he can not defy the biological will of God.

Posted by: JB | May 14, 2008 1:56 PM | Report abuse

another name you left out is Ophra winfrey, go to the church ophra built and judge for yourself. She denounces God , she says we are not created in Gods image but we create a God in our image. The new life sp movement

Posted by: Anonymous | May 14, 2008 2:07 PM | Report abuse

Those folks in Mississipi who elected this democrat:

Did it really have to take a Katrina like foreign policy? a Katrina-like economy? a Katrina-like deficit? Katrina-like job losses? Katrina like drop in the value of the dollar? Katrina-like oil prices?...

...in order to get you to come to your senses?

Posted by: Johnathan | May 14, 2008 2:08 PM | Report abuse

>>A sharing of the wealth by targeting the affluent for most of the government's revenue.
They have most of the wealth. Conservatively 5% of the population owns 60% of the wealth.

>>Lax school discipline on American children to promote their so-called liberties.
You can't beat children anymore, that's not school policy, that's the law. Besides, a lot of 'em are armed and they'll bust a cap up your backside if you try it.

>>Naked hostility to religious values and their expression in public.
Man are you confused. Let me make it simple for you, since you're obviously a Republican, get your government off my God, or some of the secular slime your so concerned about is bound to rub off.

>>A "one-world" approach to foreign relations that would prevent the U.S. government from imposing a policy that would benefit America first.
Love thy neighbor as thyself, peanut.

>>A touchy-feely vision of our society that places individual self-expression and rights over self-sacrifice and adult responsibility.
Now your complaining about the Constitution. Sorry babe, try Myanmar, I don't think they have one of those pesky things.

Posted by: Dijetlo | May 14, 2008 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Republican candidates need to "position themselves for challenging campaigns this fall."

I think that Chairman Cole is commenting on the American public's had-it-up-to-here reply to 6 years of the congressional GOP being the White House's puppet on legislation, and the last two years of their obstructionism on the Hill. It's his code to the party for "bend over and grab your ankles"...

Posted by: DavidB | May 14, 2008 3:04 PM | Report abuse

God does not belong in politics.
Religion does not belong in politics.
Politics and government would be more efficient if it wasn't constantly tripped up by bible toting republicans.

If the right is still hung up on this issue, I have a newsflash:

In his day, Jesus got around on a donkey, not an elephant.

Posted by: Gary P | May 14, 2008 4:27 PM | Report abuse

to david B
those are not my words but that of the webster dictonary.

Posted by: jb | May 14, 2008 4:28 PM | Report abuse

to Gary P
If a politician did not endorse the values of Gods words in the bible , He will not get my vote.

Posted by: jb | May 14, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

Although there are cultural differences, if you vote for God fearing politician, you are no different than those that support Bin Laden or Al-Sadr.

That's where religion screws everything up.

Posted by: Gary P | May 14, 2008 6:09 PM | Report abuse

"The Change You Deserve"

CLINICAL TRIALS HAVE SHOWN:

The new and improved Republican Platform XR produces side effects including but not limited to generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety disorder, panic disorder, nervousness, yawning, and/or sweating.
Studies have shown a propensity for abnormal vision, impotence, nausea (31%) and constipation (10%). Flatulence tends to be a problem as well.
Also revealed were increased instances of depression, decreased libido, agitation, nightmares, delirium, blurred vision and difficulty focusing.
Known to cause loss of appetite, cold feet, postural hypotension and hemorrhoids. Less common side effects include acne, pustular rash, taste perversion, prostate irritability and vaginitis.
Not a controlled substance and has not been studied in clinical trials regarding potential for abuse.

Posted by: MsSwin | May 15, 2008 12:53 AM | Report abuse

Looks like McCain has been showing progressive overdose symptoms of the Republican RX:

"And I believe that the success will be fairly easy" and "There's no doubt in my mind that... we will be welcomed as liberators." [3/24/03]

"I think we could go in with much smaller numbers than we had to do in the past... I don't believe it's going to be nearly the size and scope that it was in 1991." [9/15/02]

"There's not a history of clashes that are violent between Sunnis and Shias. So I think they can probably get along." [4/23/03]

"Overall, I think a year from now, we will have made a fair amount of progress if we stay the course."  [12/8/05 (Exactly one year before violence in Iraq peaked)]

"By January 2013, America has welcomed home most of the servicemen and -women who have sacrificed terribly so that America might be secure in her freedom." [05/115/08]

McDENIAL or simply McFOOL?

Posted by: MsSwin | May 17, 2008 1:41 AM | Report abuse

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