I’m talking about a nominee so far to the right that conservative populists get their fondest wish—and the Republican Party is forced to learn from the result. Namely, that there is such a thing as too extreme.
But if someone like Rick Santorum gets the nomination in an upset, the party faithful will get to experience the adrenalin rush of going off a cliff together, like Thelma and Louise—elation followed by an electoral thud.
Giving conservative activists everything they want in a presidential nominee would ultimately be clarifying for the Republican Party. It would break the fever that has afflicted American politics turning fellow citizens against one another. It would restore a sense of balance, recognizing that it is unwise to systemically ignore the 40% of American voters who identify themselves as independent or the 35% who are centrist. After all, a successful political party requires both wings to fly.
There’s nothing like losing 40 states to refocus the mind.
Education is a marvelous thing. Education by Experience can be devastating.