Republican campaign chiefs Rep. Pete Sessions of Texas and Rep. Greg Walden of Oregon are the chairman and deputy chairman, respectively, of the National Republican Congressional Committee, which helps candidates with the goal of maintaining Republicans' control of the House of Representatives. They were guests at the May 9 Monitor breakfast in Washington.
The possibility that Republicans will lose seats in November's House elections:
SESSIONS: "We are going to pick up seats. I know there are only two of us in Washington who think we are going to do this – that is, Greg Walden and Pete Sessions."
Whether Mitt Romney will help elect Republicans outside the Northeast:
SESSIONS: "One hundred percent of Republican candidates would appear with our entire ticket ... from the president all the way down. And I know a huge number of Democrats that will be busy ... and don't even want to be seen with the president."
What lessons can be drawn from six-term GOP Sen. Richard Lugar's loss to a tea party-backed primary opponent:
SESSIONS: There is "anger that really is on the ground all across the country.... I think Senator Lugar took the brunt of that."
The tea party's impact:
WALDEN: "They are holding those seeking office and those in office accountable to a level they have never been held before.... They are going to have that same energy double when it comes to the fall.... Wait until they get a choice between Democrats following President Obama's agenda versus Republicans...."
The nation's deficit and debt problems:
WALDEN: "As a somewhat famous vice presidential candidate said – sort of – we can see Greece from our front porch."