After smearing movement conservative icon Brent Bozell as a “hater” who has a “sordid history of hating Karl Rove,” Jonathan Collegio of American Crossroads mocked a group of prominent conservatives who wrote a letter to Crossroads GPS President Steven Law demanding Collegio be fired.
“I’ve been trying to get my friends to sign it, because it’ll make for a funnier story once I get it framed,” Collegio said, in response to the letter to the Washington Examiner. “It would be flattering, if it weren’t so absurd.”
In an interview with Breitbart News editor Larry O’Connor on WMAL’s “Mornings on the Mall” radio show in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday, Collegio said, “Bozell is a hater and he also has a long sordid history hating Karl Rove. He has weird personal axes to grind.” Collegio was on the show to talk about the group’s new super PAC, which many believe has declared war on the Tea Party.
He subsequently apologized for his remarks, but that apology was not enough for some of the conservative movement’s most prominent leaders. Collegio also seemed to be taking a swipe at Mark Levin when he criticized conservatives who supported failed Delaware Senate candidate Christine O’Donnell in 2010. Collegio said those were the types of candidates his new organization is trying to prevent from winning the GOP nomination.
“On behalf of the conservative movement, we are demanding you terminate Mr. Collegio,” they wrote. “An apology is not acceptable.”
Signatories of the letter included Richard Viguerie, one of the godfathers of the modern conservative movement, Jenny Beth Martin of Tea Party Patriots, Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council, David Bossie of Citizens United, Phyllis Schafly; Craig Shirley, the conservative Ronald Reagan biographer who has always understood the pulse of the Tea Party movement, Ginni Thomas, and conservative scholar and talk radio host Mark Levin.
“The sheer audacity of political consultants maligning a beloved and critically important player in American history is simply a bridge too far,” they wrote. “You obviously mean to have a war with conservatives and the Tea Party. Let it start here.”