Worried conservatives speculating that GOP leadership will fold to the White House in the ongoing Fiscal Cliff negotiations did not get any reassurance Tuesday when several hardline fiscal conservatives and Tea Party members were purged from key committees. Reps. David Schweikert of Arizona and Walter Jones of North Carolina were booted from the Financial Services Committee, while Reps. Justin Amash of Michigan and Tim Huelskamp of Kansas were removed from the Budget Committee.
In a statement released Monday, Rep. Huelskamp said,“The GOP leadership might think they have silenced conservatives, but removing me and others from key committees only confirms our conservative convictions. This is clearly a vindictive move, and a sure sign that the GOP Establishment cannot handle disagreement."
The "Real News" panel Tuesday discussed what this says about the GOP leadership if the committee reassignments were really a purge. Is the Tea Party and Libertarians being scapegoated for November losses? Is this an effort to move the party to the center? Do hardline fiscal conservatives have a future in the Republican party? Watch a clip from Tuesday's discussion below, including an interview with Rep. Huelskamp: