Re: the war
Regarding a pro-victory litmus test for Republicans, Bill Kristol is naming names:
"Some seven GOP senators are said to be wavering between the Democratic resolution and the McCain Graham-Lieberman alternative supporting Gen. Petraeus and the troops. They are Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, Sam Brownback of Kansas, Norm Coleman of Minnesota, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania, John Sununu of New Hampshire, and George Voinovich of Ohio. Alexander, Coleman, and Sununu are up for reelection in 2008. Some or all of the seven may still choose to stand with the president and the troops, and to give Petraeus a chance. This would leave the Democratic resolution short of the 60 votes needed to end debate. . . .
"Republican senators up for reelection in 2008 might remember this: The American political system has primaries as well as general elections. In 1978 and 1980, as Reagan conservatives took over the party from détente-establishment types, Reaganite challengers ousted incumbent GOP senators in New Jersey and New York. Surely there are victory-oriented Republicans who might step forward today in Nebraska, Virginia, Oregon, and Maine -- and, if necessary, in Tennessee, Minnesota, and New Hampshire -- to seek to vindicate the honor, and brighten the future, of the party of Reagan."
Doug Lambert expands on his thoughts on the subject here.
Joe Scarborough sees a different threat to the Reagan legacy - GOP infighting:
"At some point, GOP senators and congressmen need to understand that this war is no longer a battle between Republican war heroes and Democratic '60s hippie freaks. The lines have now been blurred by Bush’s bungling war strategy. Now we find ourselves in a fight between war heroes and war heroes. Former secretaries of Navy and former Vietnam POWs. Conservative Republicans and protectors of the president.
"That may not be so bad for George W. Bush in the short run, but it is a disaster for Republicans in 2008 and beyond. Conservatives had better wake up before all the gains made by Ronald Reagan and the 1994 Revolution are lost. The clock is ticking."