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  • Conservative Leaders Voice Outrage at Firing of RSC Executive Director

    Representative Steve Scalise (Credit: Jeff Malet Photography/Newscom)

    Representative Steve Scalise (Credit: Jeff Malet Photography/Newscom)

    Tensions between the Republican establishment and conservative movement reached a fever pitch Wednesday after House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) attacked conservative groups and a long-time Capitol Hill staffer lost his job as executive director of the Republican Study Committee.

    Those developments brought a swift response from the Conservative Action Project, which released a letter signed by more than 50 conservative leaders expressing outrage at Boehner’s remarks and the firing of Paul Teller from his leadership post at the RSC.

    We are saddened and outraged that an organization that purports to represent conservatives in Congress would dismiss a staff member for advancing conservatism and working with conservatives outside of Congress. Given this action, and the earlier comments by the Speaker, it is clear that the conservative movement has come under attack on Capitol Hill today.

    In comments on the pending budget deal, Boehner scoffed at conservative groups that have voiced concerns about the plan. “They’re using our members and they’re using the American people for their own goals,” he told reporters. “This is ridiculous.”

    A few hours later, Republican Study Committee Chairman Steve Scalise (R-LA) reportedly fired Teller for “undermin[ing] some GOP lawmakers in an alliance with conservative advocacy groups,” according to the Washington Post.

    “We all rely on staff, but we have to have the full trust of our staff. Unfortunately, that’s no longer the case,” said Scalise, who narrowly won the RSC chairmanship in a contest with Representative Tom Graves (R-GA) last year.

    Teller has not commented on the matter. Meanwhile, the move came as a surprise to members of the Republican Study Committee, according to National Journal.

    Representative Cynthia Lummis (R-WY), who serves on the RSC’s steering committee, said, “I didn’t find out about it until I walked in the room.”

    “Paul’s one of the most effective staffers on the Hill,” Representative Tim Huelskamp (R-KS) told National Journal. “He helps our cause. And firing him does not.”

    The letter signed by more than 50 conservatives leaders came a day after House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) and Senate Budget Chairwoman Patty Murray (D-WA) unveiled a plan that increases spending and raises revenues by hiking fees on Americans.

    >>> Learn More: 3 Things You Need to Know About the Budget Deal

    A copy of the Conservative Action Project letter, including the full list of signers, is below. Four individuals associated with Heritage and Heritage Action — Edwin Meese III, Michael Needham, Ed Corrigan, and Becky Norton Dunlop — signed the letter.

    Paul Teller is one of the true heroes of the conservative movement. For over a decade, he has been the guiding light of conservatism on Capitol Hill. No one has done more to advance conservative principles and block the liberal agenda than Paul Teller. In the tradition of President Reagan, he is a true happy warrior who is both forceful and courageous.

    Today, we learned that he was dismissed from his service as Executive Director of the Republican Study Committee. Let us be clear. Paul Teller has the 100% support of the conservative movement and conservatives across America. We are saddened and outraged that an organization that purports to represent conservatives in Congress would dismiss a staff member for advancing conservatism and working with conservatives outside of Congress. Given this action, and the earlier comments by the Speaker, it is clear that the conservative movement has come under attack on Capitol Hill today.

    We urge all conservative leaders to recognize the tremendous service of our friend Paul Teller, and to redouble your efforts to advance a true conservative agenda on Capitol Hill and across the country.

    The Honorable Edwin Meese III
    Former Attorney General
    President Ronald Reagan

    The Honorable David McIntosh
    Former Member of Congress

    Brent Bozell
    For America

    Mike Needham
    Heritage Action for America

    Colin Hanna
    Let Freedom Ring

    Phyllis Schlafly
    Founder & President
    Eagle Forum

    Erick Erickson

    Jenny Beth Martin
    Tea Party Patriots

    Matt Kibbe

    Amy Kremer
    Tea Party Express

    David Bossie
    Citizens United

    The Honorable Becky Norton Dunlop
    Former White House Advisor
    President Ronald Reagan

    Bill Walton
    Rappahannock Ventures LLC

    The Honorable J. Kenneth Blackwell
    Constitutional Congress, Inc.

    Cliff May
    Foundation for the Defense of Democracies

    Tom Schatz
    Council for Citizens Against Government Waste

    Jim Ryun
    The Madison Project

    The Honorable T. Kenneth Cribb, Jr.
    Former Domestic Advisor
    President Ronald Reagan

    The Honorable Alfred S. Regnery
    Former Publisher
    American Spectator

    Bob Reccord
    Executive Director
    Council for National Policy

    Edward Corrigan
    Former Executive Director
    Senate Steering Committee

    Jim Martin
    60 Plus Association

    Dan Weber
    Founder & Chairman
    Association of Mature American Citizens

    Peter J. Thomas
    The Conservative Caucus, Inc.

    Curt Levey
    The Committee for Justice

    Bob Adams
    Founder & President
    Revive America PAC

    Ralph Benko
    Center for Civic Virtue

    Andresen Blom
    Senior Strategist
    Center for Civic Virtue

    Elaine Donnelly
    Center for Military Readiness

    Tommy Sears
    Executive Director
    Center for Military Readiness

    Alex Cortes
    Executive Director
    Center for Military Readiness

    Frank J. Gaffney, Jr.
    President & CEO
    Center for Security Policy

    C. Preston Noell III
    Tradition, Family, Property, Inc.

    Frank Cannon
    American Principles Project

    Susan Carleson
    American Civil Rights Union

    Donald Devine
    American Conservative Union

    Craig Shirley
    President Ronald Reagan

    Diana Banister
    Citizens for the Republic

    Austin Ruse

    Richard Norman
    The Richard Norman Company

    Matt Mackowiak
    Executive Director
    Fight for Tomorrow

    Cindy Chafian
    The Mommy Lobby

    John Tate
    Campaign for Liberty

    Norman Kirk Singleton
    Vice President of Policy
    Campaign for Liberty

    Terry Scanlon
    Capital Research Center

    Mrs. Cleta Mitchell

    Jeff Frazee
    Executive Director
    Young Americans for Liberty

    David Y. Denholm
    Public Service Research Council

    Kay R. Daly
    Coalition for a Fair Judiciary

    Sandy Rios
    Vice President
    Family PAC Federal

    Paul Caprio
    Patriotic Veterans

    Rick Manning
    Vice President, Public Policy & Communications
    Americans for Limited Government

    Dan Bongino
    Candidate for Congress
    Maryland’s Sixth District

    Mark J. Fitzgibbons
    American Target Advertising

    Joe Gregory
    Gregory Management Company

    (All organizations listed for identification purposes only)

    Posted in Capitol Hill, Front Page [slideshow_deploy]

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