Tea partiers aren't the only ones claiming credit for the conservative sweep in Florida this year. The Miami-based Christian Family Coalition said it did its part, as well.
"More than80 percent of Christian Family Coalition-backed candidates won their races," crowed Anthony Verdugo, founder and president of the organization.
CFC-endorsed candidates ranged from newly elected Attorney General Pam Bondi and incoming Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam to a host of legislative and local office-seekers. There were 18 winning candidates in all (see list here).
By contrast, Verdugo said two-thirds of "homosexual-backed" candidates lost. By "homosexual-backed" he singled out candidates endorsed by the gay-rights group Save Dade, an organization he calls "far outside the mainstream."
Though CFC promotes a more overtly conservative social agenda than tea party groups, Verdugo said the two movements have much in common.
"We dovetail with them on a lot of issues. We bring an impassioned and motivated base," Verdugo said of his organization, which claims 5,000 members and supporters statewide.
And like tea parties, CFC vows to hold its endorsees' feet to the fire.
"We will identify officials who have voted differently than their promises. It's too easy to forget once you're in the seat of power," Verdugo said.
Depending on where they stand on issues ranging from taxes to abortion to "religious liberty," officeholders will be posted on a CFC "Wall of
Fame" or, alternately, a "Wall of Shame," Verdugo said.
Verdugo said his organization is not affiliated with the Christian Coalition, which he left nearly eight years ago to form CFC.
Contact Kenric Ward at email@example.com or (772) 801-5341.