According to Politico, GOP insiders are worried that the conservative activism found in NY-23 could result in permanent minority status:
Numerous GOP officials have told POLITICO they worry that the party has been hijacked by a noisy and powerful minority that will keep the GOP in a noisy and not-so-powerful minority for a long time. It will be impossible for GOP leaders to make this case anytime soon. The trick, instead, will be to find common ground on running conservative candidates who appeal to activists but can also run campaigns not entirely predicated on the hardest edges of their conservatism.
Noisy and powerful minority? Does that include the Wall Street Journal editorial page?
The voter revolt ought to be a lesson to the GOP's backroom boys, especially in New York state, where the old Al D'Amato insider club has led the party to irrelevance. GOP state chairman Joe Mondello, now thankfully retired, and Beltway bigs misjudged public dismay against the Democratic agenda in Washington. Nominating a candidate who “can win” in the Northeast does not have to mean someone whose voting record is more liberal on taxes and unions than that of most Blue Dog Democrats.
NY-23 is only possible because of local support for a conservative candidate. Similarly, the prospect of a Marco Rubio victory over establishment-backed Charlie Crist is a question of local judgment, not a matter for that “noisy and powerful minority” on a national level.
But what's so bad about noisy and powerful minorities? John McCain, the middle-of-the-road maverick who was said to appeal to independents and the Republican “big tent” approach, lost the 2008 election. Rather than speak to moderate audiences from a platform of conservative principles, McCain sought to reach out to conservatives from a platform of moderate experience. (To do so effectively, his strategists felt he needed Sarah Palin.)
A new poll from Rasmussen shows that those strongly oppose the newly released House health-care bill are now double that of those who strongly support the bill. In other words, it doesn't sound like this is much of an angry minority. More like an angry majority.