Jonathan Chait

Tactical Radicals Storm The Castle

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The Republican Party has the enormous good fortune of having a highly popular Senate candidate, Mike Castle, running in Delaware, a state with an overwhelming Democratic tilt. Except Castle has a right ring primary challenger named Christine O'Donnell, who's been endorsed by the Tea Party and may grab the endorsement of Jim DeMint and possibly Sarah Palin:

O’Donnell, a marketing consultant challenging Castle from the right, told POLITICO she’s been courting support from both DeMint and Palin, in the hope of adding some energy to what has so far been an obscure primary fight. “I strongly believe that if we do get these endorsements, that will help bring to light what is at stake in this election,” she explained.

As O’Donnell criticizes Castle for supporting the bank bailouts, cap and trade and abortion rights, she appears to have caught DeMint’s attention. The two met recently and a spokesman for the senator’s political action committee said DeMint was “extremely impressed.”

“She’s a principled conservative who has been overlooked by the Washington establishment. The senator has not made an endorsement in this race but he's watching it closely to see if O'Donnell can get within striking distance,” Matt Hoskins said.

The Delaware GOP primary will be an interesting test of whether the party establishment can get its way. Politico's David Catanese says, "It might take a miracle" for O'Donnell to win. That sounds familiar:

Have fun storming the castle, Republican nutcases!

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