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GOP Watch: In denial?

Politico has the take on Obama's 100 days from former White House press secretary Dana Perino and vaunted political watcher Tom Mann:
PERINO: "[T]he GOP is doing a much better job of working as a team, arguing on the merits, utilizing new technologies to communicate and raising the profile of younger members like Paul Ryan… The GOP's secret weapon will be the conservative Democrats -- and my advice is to keep making the votes tough for them to explain back home."
MANN: "Republicans have been in denial since the 2008 election returns came in. For a nation facing an economic crisis, they moved much too quickly into an opposition mode. They are embracing policies entirely unresponsive to the problems confronting the country and the globe. By retreating to their ideological base, they have made themselves irrelevant to policy­making and increasingly unpopular with the public. In my 40 years of watching American politics in Washington, I have never seen an out party so bent on self-destruction."

Politics Daily's Jill Lawrence says the GOP's disarray "reflects a party somewhere between implosion and recovery. It's an awkward phase that could last a while." More: "We've seen awkward attempts by GOP leaders to distance themselves from radio host Rush Limbaugh while trying not to offend the acerbic mischief-maker or his followers. We've witnessed family feuds and political missteps that are making even conservatives wonder if Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin has a national future. President Obama's $787 billion economic recovery package has set Republicans against each other every which way: governor vs. governor, governor vs. state legislators, governors vs. members of Congress."  

A conservative group led by Ed Gillespie and Whit Ayres -- called ResurgentRepublic -- officially launches today. The group says "the White House and Congressional leaders" are moving "the country dramatically left," according to a release e-mailed to First Read. It "aims to shape the debate over the proper role of government. Resurgent Republic will promote market-oriented policies, lower taxes and economic growth, and strong national security policies. It will help policy makers, think tanks, interest groups and others advocate for policies that are consistent with conservative principles, and oppose policies that stifle job creation, weaken national security and undermine values that have made America a great country." Others on the advisory board include Gov. Haley Barbour (R-MS), former Sen. George Allen (R-VA), Bill Paxon, Vin Weber, and Mary Matalin.

This is a potentially interesting development. This is the establishment wing of the GOP flexing its muscles a tad. Could this be the DLC like development which started post-'84 and didn't see fruition, really, until '92? Obviously, these folks would bristle at the idea that they are a "centrist" GOP alternative. That's not the point... What we're saying is that the intellectual wing of the GOP is looking for a foundation again. Could this be it? It's a who's-who of the GOP from the Beltway end of things.