DeMint Says He Has Votes to Expel Stevens

Posted November 18, 2008 at 8:49am

Sen. Jim DeMint (S.C.) said Tuesday he will hold off on pushing to expel embattled Sen. Ted Stevens (Alaska) from the GOP Conference until after the outcome of his colleague’s re-election to another Senate term is known.

But DeMint said he has the support to boot Stevens — recently convicted on seven felony counts — from the Republican ranks.

“After talking with many of my colleagues, it’s clear there are sufficient votes to pass the resolution regarding Senator Stevens. The question now is timing,” DeMint said. “Some who support the resolution believe we should address this after the results of his election are confirmed in Alaska. For this reason, I will ask the Conference to postpone the vote on Senator Stevens until Thursday.”

The vote counting in Stevens’ re-election race against Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich (D) is expected to be completed Tuesday night. Begich currently leads Stevens, who turns 85 today, by 1,022 votes.