Mel Martinez Stands Up to Jim DeMint and the Tea Baggers
DeMint has previously said, "I would rather have 30 Republicans in the Senate who really believe in principles of limited government, free markets, free people, than to have 60 that don't have a set of beliefs."
He's also set off to make sure that conservative Republican candidates win primaries across the nation. Indeed, he was one of the first national voices to back Marco Rubio and has sent more than $240,000 Rubio's way.
"He defines success differently than I would. I would say success is how many R's we put into the Republican side of the ledger. He views that it is better to lose and have people that actually stand up 100 percent in line with his point of view," Martinez tells the Huffington Post.
While DeMint's wager on Rubio may very well pay off, other DeMint backed senate candidates may not be as successful. Martinez believes headline grabbing anti-masturbating witch Christine O'Donnell will likely not win her race in Delaware.
Martinez also laments the loss of Republican moderates, and predicts an uncompromising, bitter Senate.
"The likely suspects that a Democrat would have gone to in recent years would have been people like [Utah Sen.] Bob Bennett, [Alaska Sen.] Lisa Murkowski, Mel Martinez, perhaps a [Missouri Sen.] Kit Bond on certain issues, a [Ohio Sen.] George Voinovich," said Martinez. "Essentially none of those names will be in the Senate this coming session. They will be replaced with people who are more inclined to be associated with and helped by Jim DeMint, who has not often been spoken in the same breathe as a compromiser. So it will be a more difficult session."
DeMint is up for election this year too, but is up against national political joke Alvin Greene. When he's not running his easy re-election campaign, or backing tea party candidate, he's busy claiming that gays and unwed mothers should not be school teachers.