On Wednesday afternoon, Club for Growth, the conservative group that has challenged moderate Republicans in past primaries, launched a new website that targets nine current Republican members of the House of Representatives who represent conservative districts but have moderate to liberal voting records for primary challenges in 2014.
The nine members listed at PrimaryMyCongressman.com include:
Martha Roby (R-AL)
Rick Crawford (R-AR)
Mike Simpson (R-ID)
Adam Kinzinger (R-IL)
Aaron Shock (R-IL)
Larry Bucshon (R-IN)
Steve Palazzo (R-MS)
Renee Ellmers (R-NC)
Frank Lucas (R-OK)
Three of these nine--Ellmers, Crawford, and Palazzo--were first elected to Congress as part of the Tea Party wave in 2010, but have since disappointed their local Tea Party groups by consistently voting with the Republican leadership. Ellmers, in particular, has been prominently featured in many press events held by Speaker Boehner. All nine of these targeted moderates represent districts where Mitt Romney received more than 60% of the vote in 2012 and have Club for Growth voting record ratings of less than 70%, as first reported in Politico.
Club for Crowth President Chris Chocola told Politico that the website had been under development well before Karl Rove announced his Conservative Victory Project, believed by many as an effort to defeat Tea Party candidates in Republican primaries. However, he added that "[w]e started thinking … if [Rove's] standard is electability and the most conservative Republican that can win, they ought to be the first to fill out the nomination form [in every one of the nine districts] because clearly a more conservative candidate can fill these districts than the ones that are serving. "
The website also solicits recommendations for the names of potential challengers.