Famously outspoken former Sen. Alan Simpson (R-Wyo.) went on CNN’s “Fareed Zakaria GPS” this morning to advocate the deficit-reduction plan crafted with former Clinton chief of staff Erskine Bowles, but launched into a monologue about Republican purity and RINO labels.
Simpson was asked about House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan’s (R-Wis.) view that the Simpson-Bowles plan has too many tax increases and not enough spending cuts.
“Well, I think my party and I have different views on a lot of things. I guess I’m known as a RINO now, which means a Republican in name only because I guess of social views perhaps or common sense would be another one which seems to escape members of our party,” Simpson said, adding that men shouldn’t vote on abortion and gay rights should boil down to “we’re all God’s children.”
“And for heaven’s sakes, you have Grover Norquist wandering the Earth in his white robes saying that if you raise taxes one penny, he’ll defeat you. He can’t murder you, he can’t burn your house, the only thing he can do to you, as an elected official, is defeat you for reelection,” the former senator continued.
“And if that means more to you than your country when we need patriots to come out in a situation when we’re in extremity, you shouldn’t even be in Congress.”
“…This is madness,” Simpson said. “If you want to be a purest, go somewhere on a mountain top and praise the east or something, but if you want to be in politics, you learn to compromise and you learn to compromise an issue without compromising yourself. Show me a guy who won’t compromise and I’ll show you a guy with rock for brains.”