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Long IslandPoliticsSpin Cycle

King blasts House "tea party" bloc


Rep. Pete King, the Seaford Republican who has been in the House since 1992, today expressed little patience with the freshmen tea party Republicans in the House.

On Imus in the Morning, King blasted the small vocal bloc that blew up -- and then had to cave on -- the two-month deal on the payroll tax cuts that Senate Republicans and Democrats negotiated.

President Barack Obama today signed the two-month deal negotiated originally in the Senate to extend the payroll tax cut and unemployment insurance, avoid a cut to doctors' Medicare payments and accepted a requirement that he make a decision on the Keystone Pipeline deal in two months instead of in 2013. 

"This initially was a victory for Republicans," King said. But, he said, "We had people in our party who didn’t know when to accept victory."

King referred to the House GOP members who blocked the deal as "misguided" and even as "pinheads," quoting Fox TV host Bill O'Reilly. He accused them of incurring "unnecessary self-inflicted wounds," and pushing for something that would "kill" the Republicans politically while it brought "harm to the American people." 

He credited House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) with "getting us out of this without too much damage being done" by forcing the House to approve the deal. But King added, "I think we should have done this last week."

King recalled the Republican conference on Monday evening, where person after person denounced the Senate deal. 

"They kept comparing themselves to Mel Gibson in 'Braveheart.' All these references to 'Braveheart' over and over again," King said. 

"And I as I was sitting there I was thinking, you know, Mel Gibson was also in 'Gallipoli,' which was one of the worst military defeats ever. . .  They went charging in convinced they were going to win and they got wiped out. And that’s what I saw happening to us."

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