Republican governor: GOP congressional leaders "inconsequential"

Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman goes after Republicans in Congress, saying they haven't moved past "gratuitous partisanship" and come up with real ideas.

By Alex Koppelman

Published February 24, 2009 5:00PM (EST)

Sometimes, even Republican governors get frustrated with their party's congressional leadership. Take Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman, who let loose during an interview with the Washington Times, saying the GOP's leaders in Congress are "inconsequential" and that they've failed to move beyond "gratuitous partisanship."

Huntsman's primary beef with the Republican minority is that, in his view, they haven't come up with new ideas and solutions, but are representing themselves as -- to borrow a cliché -- the party of "no."

"Right now, we are devoid of some of those big ideas that will allow us to become a governing party once again," Huntsman told the Times. "Until we get to that point, we are going to be sort of out there gasping for air, and that's where we are right now."

There is a little irony to Huntsman's statements, though: The man he goes to for these big ideas is former House Speaker Newt Gingrich. (To be fair to Huntsman, while Gingrich may be known for his gratuitous partisanship, he is also known as an idea man, although an idea man who has little interest in how those plans are actually carried out.)

Alex Koppelman

Alex Koppelman is a staff writer for Salon.

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