Will this be the week that political scientists look back on in particular when they study the Great Republican Implosion of 2010?
The GOP has parlayed its humiliating 2008 loss of the White House and Congress into not an effort to broaden its base to include more than aging Caucasian males who put their teeth in a bedside water glass before turning in, but instead has tacked relentlessly to the ideologically "pure" right. Still, the last few days have been a doozy:
* In Florida, party purists all but completed the job of throwing Governor Charlie Crist under the bus, pretty much guaranteeing that the moderate Republican will run as an independent and as such will stand an excellent chance of beating the knuckle dragging Marco Rubio and Kendrick Meek, the eponymously uninspiring Democratic challenger.
* In Arizona, the Republican governor is poised to sign a harsh anti-immigration law passed by the Republican-controlled legislature that gives the term "police state" new meaning. Oh, and Barack Obama will have to prove that he is an American citizen before his name can be placed on the state's 2012 presidential ballot.
* In Nevada, right-wing Republican Susan Lowden, who is challenging Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, became the subject of untold chicken jokes after she declared that patients should be able to barter doctors' services. One wag calculated that the U.S. would be 443 billion chickens short if they replaced cash, credit cards and insurance for doctors' office visits.
* Presidential wannabe Newt Gingrich, who passes for the party's intellectual heavyweight these days, predicted that the Tea Party will become "the militant wing" of the GOP. Where's the Newtster been? It already is.
* Wingnut den mother Sarah Palin further burnished her credentials by ridiculing Obama for having no experience in negotiating a nuclear weapons reduction treaty with Russia when it turns out that the prez met or spoke with his Russian counterpart sixteen times to personally negotiate details of the pact.
* Jim DeMint, the South Carolina senator and arguably the nuttiest of the Capitol Hill wingnuts, became the latest Republican extremist to contemplate a presidential run.
* Party Chairman Michael Steele, reeling from yet another scandal involving the misuse of donor contributions, opined in a rare moment of candor that Republicans haven't given blacks any reason for vote for them. For the last 40 years.
* Finally, it was revealed that some 20 Fox News "personalities" have endorsed, raised money, or campaigned for Republican candidates or causes, or against Democratic candidates or causes, in more than 300 instances and in at least 49 states.
I can't wait to see what happens next. Can you?