This ideological inquisition among Republicans isn't confined to the presidential race. The two House Republicans most critical of the Iraq war (Walter Jones of North Carolina and Wayne Gilchrest of Maryland) have drawn serious primary challengers from the right. So had Nebraska's Chuck Hagel, the Senate Republican most critical of the war, before he announced his retirement last month. Virginia Republicans recently decided to choose their next Senate nominee by convention rather than primary -- a move that favors conservative former Gov. Jim Gilmore over moderate Rep. Tom Davis.Beating these guys should be like shooting fish in a barrel and yet....
The percentage of independents who view the GOP favorably has plummeted from 68 percent in 1994 to just 40 percent now in surveys by the nonpartisan Pew Research Center. In 2006, independents preferred Democrats over Republicans nearly 3-to-2 in House elections, and by crushing margins in most truly competitive Senate races.
Friday, October 26, 2007