This is how bad the relations between the Republican Party and GOP Idaho Sen. Larry Craig have gotten over his on-again, off-again, on-again decision to leave office to fight for his reputation amid a sex scandal.
The Republican National Committee chairman issued a statement to Whispers that practically demands Craig's resignation. From RNC Chairman Robert M. "Mike" Duncan, we got this note today: "While Senator Craig has the right to pursue all legal avenues, his decision to resign September 30 was right for his state and party. We look forward to working with a new Republican senator from Idaho starting October 1." That is the harshest demand yet that Craig resign immediately, and GOP officials hope it will lead other party leaders in Congress to increase their pressure on Craig.
"We're trying to turn the heat up," said a GOP official. "It's time for him to go. It's a dead-cat bounce." Party advisers say that Craig's case has a "yuck factor" that could further undermine the GOP's effort to win back voters in advance of the 2008 elections.