steve latourette defines a grifter as: A grifter is a con artist—someone who swindles people out of money through fraud. If there’s one type of person you don’t want to trust, it’s a grifter: Someone who cheats someone out of money.

Historically, grifters have taken many shapes. They were the snake-oil salesmen who rolled into town promising a magical, cure-all elixir at a price. The grifter was long gone by the time people discovered the magical elixir was no more magical than water. They were the sideshow con men offering fantastic prizes in games that were rigged so that no one could actually win them. They were the Ponzi scheme operators who got rich promising fantastically high investment returns but returning nothing for those sorry investors at the bottom of the pyramid.

Over the last few years we have seen the rise of a new grifter—the political grifter. And the most important battle being waged today isn’t the one about which party controls the House or the Senate, it’s about who controls the Republican Party: the grifting wing or the governing wing.
—  Former GOP Rep. Steve LaTourette, pointing out that people like Ted Cruz are merely using the Tea Party movement as a gravy train to enrich themselves – and that this is hurting not only the Republican Party, but the nation.
There’s a one-word phrase we use in Ohio for that: crap. I mean, that’s nonsense… The Republican Party cannot be a national party if we give up the entire East Coast of the United States and say – we don’t have any Republicans in New England, we don’t have any Republicans in the Mid-Atlantic states. We can’t continue to diss the Latino voters and – you know, my wife’s a Democrat, and she was so close to voting for Mitt Romney, but then Mourdock and Akin opened their mouth and we sent them running back to the Democratic Party because they think we’re nutty. We have the right message on the finances. We have to get out of people’s lives, get out of people’s bedrooms, and we have to be a national party, or else we’re going to lose.
—  Retiring GOP Rep. Steve LaTourette, on the idea that Republicans lost because they weren’t conservative enough.