NewsNation | February 04, 2013
>>> our nbc news first read team reports back as part of the gop's effort to recover from the th shellacking in november. karl rove launching an effort called the conservative victory project to keep less electable conservative republicans from winning primaries, those indicate todd arin, richard mourdock , sharron angle , christine o'donnell who all lost winnable races last year or 2010 . the first target could be in iowa where representative steve king is considering running for the congress in 2014 but the head of the conservative fund the conservative defeat project telling politico, another example of the republican establish's hostility toward its conservative base rather than listening to the grass roots and working to advance their principles, the establishment has chosen to declare war on the party's most loyal supporters and from red state , quote, i share any candidate who gets this group's support should be targeted for destruction by the conservative movement . joining me is editor mark murray . but the reality you and the first read team say this could and perhaps will get ugly here.
>> well, it could get ugly. also railroad healthy. this is something that all parties go through after losing elections, particularly losing back to back presidential contests and crossroads, same organization trying to have a new outfit and outshoot saying it comes down to capable candidates versus incompetent ones and sometimes that capability is in the eye of the beholder . there were some candidates, republican side , who seem to be competent, george allen in virginia, tommy thompkins and they all lost as well as the richard murdoches anded to akins and sometimes this issue is more difficult.
>> but we know it's goes deeper. for example, chris matthews repeated this comment and someone tweeted after the election, did the rape candidate lose? i think alec baldwin . the answer was which one? you had the gop candidates who all made these, you know, horrific comments regarding women and rape.
>> and that has been a very big problem for republicans but one of the issues and one of the thing that is the karl rove group is trying to do is that the republican primary electorate and many of the states is very conservative and so it's very easy for some of these folks whether a todd akin or maybe in the next 2014 cycle of steve king in iowa to be able to win a primary. it's another thing to win in the general election . but there's counter examples. some people thought that the marco rubios of the world could not win. he proved that they could.
>> this rests on karl rove 's clout and the question of " morning joe ," as well, does he have clout?
>> well, they did not have a very good election cycle in 2012 . they had a much better one in 2010 and there's a sense of whether or not karl rove , american crossroads, has the credibility to issue threats to more conservatives not to get in. the other thing, can they raise the money to defeat republicans? one thing to ask wealthy republicans to raise money to defeat democratic candidates in the general election and another thing to pony up money to defeat conservative republicans in the primary.
>> we saw with todd akin , an enormous swell of pressure for him to drop autoand he obviously went on to lose and stood in defiance against the establishment and he didn't have a lot of money or clout.
>> one of the things that we have seen over past four years and past two election cycles is being seen as the establishment kapd date or part of the establishment is more problematic than an outsider and this is true some times with republican politics or democratic politics. you don't want to be stuck as a person of the political machine and there's a potential it could backfire. you mentioned that quote saying, look, if you're part of the organization of karl rove , you might have more trouble on your hands than otherwise.
>> interesting. thank you very much,