DeMint hits 'good ol' boys Senate club' for protecting Murkowski

Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) said he spoke loudly Wednesday during a closed door meeting of Senate Republicans in favor of booting Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) from her spot as the ranking Republican on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee.

In an email Thursday to supporters of DeMint's Senate Conservatives Fund, the lawmaker said that during Wednesday's meeting, "one senator after another stood up to argue in favor of protecting her place on the committee."

DeMint said he spoke out against it and voted to remove Murkowski from the committee--something the GOP conference ultimately declined to do Wednesday.  

"It was bad enough to watch my colleagues work to support her in the primary after she had built a record of betraying conservatives principles," wrote DeMint. "But watching them back her after she left the party and launched a campaign against the Republican nominee was more than I could bear."  

DeMint said the move to keep Murkowski in place is something the incumbent will "use in her campaign against Joe Miller, the conservative Republican nominee." 

The email from DeMint urged supporters to donate to Tea Party-backed Joe Miller, who defeated Murkowski in the state's primary. DeMint set a goal of raising $150,000 for Miller's campaign. 

The South Carolina Republican, who has rankled some of his fellow GOP Senators given his involvement in several contested Republican Senate primaries this year, said it was hypocritical of Republicans to criticize him for backing O'Donnell in Delaware but not punish Murkowski for waging a write-in campaign, "which could hand the seat to a Democrat."