If it has accomplished nothing else, the
The latest plot twist comes from Nebraska, where three conservatives have been vying to be the GOP's nominee for the U.S. Senate. The "establishment" candidate, state Atty. Gen.
The official tea party favorite, state Treasurer Don Stenberg, was backed by a combined $2 million from the Club for Growth and from South Carolina Sen. Jim DeMint's Senate Conservatives Fund. Stenberg is just the kind of uncompromising conservative DeMint is trying to pack into the Senate Republican caucus.
But when Nebraska Republicans voted on Tuesday, they chose a third candidate, state Sen. Deb Fischer, who was endorsed by the tea party's favorite celebrity,
This kerfuffle among conservatives follows by a week the dramatic upset of Indiana's veteran senator,
Taking down Lugar was a mighty blow against traditional Republicanism, and it put all other GOP incumbents on notice that any deviation from militant obstructionism could bring out the knives. Like the climax of Hamlet, there may soon be bodies strewn all over the Republican stage.
Democrats are delighted by all of this. They think the purge of establishment Republicans in Nebraska and Indiana has improved the Democrats' chances of taking two Senate seats in very conservative states. But they might want to think again.
Right now, Republicans have the drama, the enthusiasm and the attention of the news media. Sure, the right-wing revolt is dispiriting to the men in cuff links and wingtips at the Republican Capitol Hill Club, but out in the hinterlands a very committed political force is being energized by the battle.