Republicans across the country are upset with the party’s election defeats last week, and many see strategist Karl Rove as a major culprit.
His Crossroads groups raised more than $300 million to defeat President Barack Obama and regain GOP control of the Senate. They failed on both accounts, and many donors to the cause aren’t too happy.
Some of them are upset that Crossroads had such inaccurate polls, and others say more money should have been spent at the grassroots level rather than on TV advertising, sources tell Politico.
Rove’s competitors within the party charge that he’s doing more harm than good and are trying to draw donors away from him.
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To be sure, not everyone is hopping mad at Rove. “I feel we made progress,” Minnesota media titan Stan Hubbard, who has donated to both American Crossroads super PAC and its affiliate Crossroads GPS, told Politico. “Every quarterback, every coach doesn’t call every play 100 percent right. I don’t know how you’re going to blame him. What are you going to blame Karl for?”
Rove’s defense is that things would have been much worse for Republicans without the Crossroads spending. “We did good things this year,” he told The Washington Post. “But look, it’s the way of politics that you’re going to have some good years, and you’re going to have some bad years.”
Legendary Republican strategist Richard Viguerie is having none of it. He thinks the GOP should dump Rove; strategist Ed Gillespie, who helped him found Crossroads; and Romney advisers Stuart Stevens and Neil Newhouse.
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