A prominent Tea Party group sent a message to members on Monday identifying five current Republican Senators that they intend to target in 2012.
Tea Party Nation named Sens. Dick Lugar, R-Ind., Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, Olympia Snowe, R-Maine, Scott Brown, R-Mass., and Bob Corker, R-Tenn., as Republicans that need to be sent into retirement, accusing them of being Republicans In Name Only, or RINOs.
The message cited Lugar's vote against a ban on earmarks as well as a his votes in favor of the DREAM Act and the START Treaty. Hatch was also criticized for being a "pork king" and a co-sponsor of the DREAM Act, which would have provided a path to citizenship for certain young illegal immigrants.
Tea Party Nation blasted Snowe for her votes in favor of the health care reform bill, the START Treaty, and the repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," while the group called Brown " the biggest disappointment of the last year."
Judson Phillips, the founder of Tea Party Nation, said Corker is the group's top target, because he "has done many things to sell out the conservative Tennesseans who put him in office."
"The good news for 2012 is that so many liberals are up for reelection, Republicans are guaranteed control of the Senate and we do not have to pinch our noses this time and support a RINO to prevent liberal control of the Senate," Phillips said.
He added, "2012 will be a very good year for the Tea Party movement and RINO is on the menu!"
Tea Party members had success in a number of Republican Senate primaries in 2010, including in Utah, Florida, Nevada, and Delaware, although their results in the general election were more mixed.
by RTT Staff Writer
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