I have a bit of a busy weekend, so I thought it would be interesting to posit this debate point: One year from its inception, is the Republican "civil war" over (and has the crazy right won)?
On a first blush, my answer would be yes.
The crazy right seems to be pushing their debate right now, saying almost anything they want without any pushback from "moderates." What few "moderates" that are left on the stage are largely in retreat, concerned about their own jeopardy if they cross the hardcore, and when one of the "moderates" is attacked, Olympia Snowe, Charlie Crist, Lindsey Graham, etc, none of the other "moderates" dares to step up to speak for them. More or less, the "moderates" have fled the field and are now worried only about their own survival, trying to convince the crazy right victors that they have been on their side all along.
There's also a second question over whether the "civil war" is actually over, or whether this is just early battles. There's also a question over whether a potential influx of disapproving of Obama independents, might shift the field (or whether the crazy wing keeps them away,) but at this point, one year from the "civil war's" beginning, I'm inclined to call it over by the mercy rule.
So, opinions? Are the moderates really out? Will the crazy right over extend, leaving an opening for a moderate resurgence? Has the GOP changed for good? What would be the implications?
I think we now have enough data and distance to have a real discussion.
(And, I think Gingrich over NY-23 was a watershed. If he got pilloried and had to back down, that past amalgam of GOP is certainly gone.)