It seems a fissure is developing within the GOP of late. On one side are the paranoid, conspiracy-minded wingnuts who are, if you can believe it, doubling down in their insane march towards political oblivion; on the other, stands the more rational crowd who can clearly see the writing on the wall and know this dog isn't hunting anymore.
David Frum's latest piece in The Daily Beast on Mitt Romney's recent bout with verbal diarrhea might be the best take on where the Republican Party is right now. He continues to be one of the fiercest and most outspoken critics of the Tea Party's influence over the party.
All voters want "stuff," Republicans as well as Democrats. If anything, Republican voters have been more successful at obtaining "stuff" than Democrats: Medicare is more generous than Medicaid, farm programs deliver better returns than means-tested programs.
The Romney-Ryan ticket did not stint on the stuff-offering itself: it promised Republican voters that all the cost of deficit reduction would be dumped on Democratic voters - voters under 55 - with Republicans gaining the additional benefit of a 20% cut in tax rates.
But Mitt Romney was very wrong to see 2012 as a referendum on "stuff." It was a referendum on the question, which candidate would do a better job promoting prosperity and creating jobs. That was the referendum that Romney and the Republican Party lost. We lost both because voters did not believe in the job-creating magic of upper-income tax cuts - and because voters were unpersuaded that the GOP even cared that much about job creation, as opposed to wealth preservation.
That's the lesson defeated Republicans should be drawing. Governor Bobby Jindal gets it. Who else?