GOPJim DeMint

Video: Senator Jim DeMint Warns Republicans If They Support Debt Ceiling Increase

Of course, there are conditions, but Senator DeMint has pretty much laid down the gauntlet or should I say litmus test for the GOP.

Plus, the South Carolina Senator has the PAC money to back it up.

Conservative firebrand Sen. Jim DeMint has a message to fellow Republicans in Congress: If you support increasing the debt ceiling without first passing a balanced budget amendment and massive across-the-board spending cuts, you’re gone — destined to be swept out of Congress by a wave of voter anger.

“Based on what I can see around the country,” DeMint, R-S.C., said in an interview for the ABC News Subway Series, “not only are those individuals gone, but I would suspect the Republican Party would be set back many years.

“It would be the most toxic vote,” DeMint said. “I can tell you if you look at the polls, Democrats, Republicans, Independents, they do not think we should increase the debt limit.”

DeMint is not just talking political analysis here. He has a significant fundraising base and has shown a willingness to use his campaign money to support or oppose fellow Republicans.

DeMint will use that political muscle to oppose fellow Republicans who don’t stand firm on the debt ceiling issue. He said he will not support any candidate for Congress — incumbent or challenger — who does not sign a pledge promising not to vote for a debt limit increase without first passing a balanced budget amendment, making deep spending cuts and putting strict limits on future government spending. The same rule applies to presidential candidates.

But, the GOP will have to be careful, because I can foresee the Obama Administration scapegoating the GOP when they refuse to pay out Social Security and military payroll checks when and if the debt limit ceiling crisis hits this summer.

There will be some deals made to avert a crisis, but the Democrats are lirking in the weeds to inflict maximum damage to the Republicans.