DERPMany people have been amused lately at “Gateway Pundit” Jim Hoft’s seething hatred of Todd Akin, most beautifully expressed in his post He May Bring Down the GOP – But Todd Akin Honey Badger Don’t Give a Sh*t.
Why would Jim Hoft, a birther who occupies the outer fringe of unfettered Obama hatred, spend his time bashing the uber-conservative Akin rather than following his usual schtick of race-baiting and science-denial?
Part of the answer can be found in Hoft’s immediate pushing of Missouri Republican Ann Wagner to take Akin’s spot in the primary:
Now that GOP operative Mary Matalin suggested today on ABC News that Republicans will run Ann Wagner as a write-in candidate against Akin, Hoft’s attacks on Akin take on a new significance, and I thought I’d share some of the backgroud with people who don’t have the pleasure of knowing the details of Missouri’s crazy GOP politics.
First of all, Ann Wagner is the ultimate GOP insider. She was an Ambassador to Luxembourg under President Bush. She was the chair of Roy Blunt’s 2010 Senate campaign. She was a finalist in the voting for RNC Chair. In other words, she’s exactly the “Republican Establishment Type” that the tea party claims to rage against.
However, when Wagner decided to run in Missouri’s 2nd district (vacated by Todd Akin when he decided to run for Senate), the leadership of the St. Louis Tea Party was split between Wagner and Ed Martin, a guy who had been with them since their first rally and even served on their leadership board. In particular, most of the grassroots leaders of the tea party supported Ed Martin, but Jim Hoft and Dana Loesch immediately jumped to the Wagner camp and started launching attacks on Ed Martin.
After Hoft started launching attacks on Martin, things got heated up. I flagged a number of the tea party’s criticisms of Hoft at the time. First, they pointed out the dishonesty of Hoft claiming that Ed Martin had attacked first, considering that Dan Riehl had written a hit piece on Martin on Big Government. Hoft also absurdly tried to suggest that Ed Martin was more connected to Roy Blunt than was Ann Wagner (who was the chair of Blunt’s Senate campaign). They even suggested that Illinois Republican operative Chip Gerdes had claimed to have written Riehl’s original attack article as a “warning shot.”
As mentioned at the top, Hoft was quoted in the first hit piece against Ed Martin that came out last August on Big Government. That piece, supposedly written by Dan Riehl, sparked a firestorm among Tea Party conservatives in Missouri. Upon questioning, Chip Gerdes, another paid political consultant, stated that he wrote the piece as a ‘warning shot’ to Ed Martin because of comments that Martin made on a Christian AM radio station.
St. Louis Tea Party founder Bill Hennessy also criticized Hoft in the comments:
I, too, am disappointed by Jim Hoft’s inconsistency and deception.
Inconsistency: Jim approved of Dan Riehl’s Big Government hit piece on Ed Martin some months ago—the one that rehashed old Carnahan distortions that 24th State shot down in 2010.
Deception: Jim knows that St. Louis Tea Party researchers, not the Ed Martin campaign, performed the research and supplied it to Daily Caller. I was present when Jim was told. By pretending otherwise, Jim seems to intentionally deceive Gateway Pundit readers.
After this post, the escalation continued, and someone sent me leaked emails showing just how crazy the discussion had become:
That is absolutely the case. These four (plus a Mr Mom stay at home blogger) have gone rogue, cut off all communication within the STLTPC core, disabled email accounts, stolen intellectual property, and LIED…all in the name of a candidate. Sad. Oh, also, Chris Loesch has requested an immediate cease of use on his logos…which include the St Louis Tea Party logo and the SOB (pirate looking) logo. So, if you have these up on any of your sites, please replace them with something else. He has never been compensated for the use of these.
And this, ultimately, led to Hoft and the Loeschs taking their ball and going home, officially kneecapping the St. Louis Tea Party they had used for fame. Hilariously, throughout the whole ordeal, Loesch and Hoft pretended to be “neutral” between the candidates while constantly attacking Ed Martin. They acted as tools of the GOP establishment, and inconsistently with the rebellious image they tried to cultivate for the tea party.
Sound familiar? It should, because this is exactly what they’re doing now for Ann Wagner. The establishment doesn’t want people like Todd Akin, who honestly express the views of the Religious Right fringe that make up the Republican Party base, to be front and center in the discussion, and Hoft and Loesch, for all of their unhinged hatred, are content to be tools for the establishment.