Iowa R’s backpeddle harsh words made about Barbour

As members of the Republican National Committee and representatives of Iowa Republicans, we strongly support the efforts of Haley Barbour and the Republican Governors Association to support and help elect all duly nominated Republican candidates for Governor all across this country,” IA RNC members Steve Scheffler and Kim Lehman said in a statement, provided to Hotline OnCall by an RGA spokesman.

The statement represents a dramatic backpedal for both Lehman and Scheffler. Earlier, both had harsh words for Barbour.

“My concern is Haley Barbour,” Lehman told Hotline OnCall in a phone interview today. “This is, in my opinion, poor leadership.”

Scheffler said Barbour’s actions would impact his WH’12 chances. “He’s toast in Iowa, as far as I’m concerned,” Scheffler said. “I traditionally stay out of presidential contested races, but this kind of information will be distributed far and wide.”

“We are strong conservatives and signed a letter we initially thought would send a message of support for conservative candidates in our party,” the 2 said in their joint statement late Wednesday. “Upon further reflection, we understand this letter could be interpreted as meddling in the affairs of an independent Republican organization and we wish in no way to harm the efforts of the Republican Governors Association in the pursuit of its work.”

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