Is this true?
Should Benton have said it?
The GOP claims this big tent. I freely admit that I am no longer a part of it and sleep much more soundly for it as I reserve my right to vote for and otherwise support any candidate, regardless of party, whom I choose. (Just for one example, I routinely voted for Brian Sontag for state auditor and have routinely voted against Jaime Herrera for anything.)
Rodney Tom deserves to be in the state senate, perhaps more than some who have an "R" after their name. I have no clue what possessed Sen. Benton to take this shot at him except, perhaps, some of that rage he feels towards Sen. Ann Rivers might have rubbed off.
As Sen. Parlette indicated, it's premature to make any such blanket statement. Whoever becomes the GOP leader in the event they can miraculously attain a majority without Sen. Sheldon or Sen. Tom, I guarantee it won't be Sen. Benton or any of the posse.
This kind of statement is foolish and like any other effort to inject rank partisanship into a tenuous coalition accomplishes nothing except to hand the democrats ammunition to first, strengthen their view that GOP "bi-partisanship" is a sham and second, weaken Sen. Tom NOW, during THIS session, in addition to making his path to re-election that much more difficult.
Whatever the Caucus ultimately decides, Benton's statement was uncalled for and counter-productive.
He should know better.