One of the findings on our national poll this week has a lot of relevance to what's going on in the political world today: only 41% of moderates think there's a place in the Republican Party for them. You have to wonder this afternoon if Mike Castle includes himself in that 41%.
If I was a Republican Senator up for reelection in 2012 right now who was anywhere to the left of Tom Coburn I'd be getting very nervous about my renomination chances. Last week we looked at a couple folks in the GOP caucus who are up next time and found that both of them could be in a great deal of trouble. It's not much surprise that Maine Republicans want to purge out the clearly centrist Olympia Snowe by a 63-29 margin. But it was a little startling to see that the GOP base in Texas wanted to replace the pretty reliably conservative Kay Bailey Hutchison with someone even further to the right by a 62-25 spread.
And one thing that was made clear by Christine O'Donnell's victory is that in this political climate you don't even have to be a particularly good candidate to catch fire and bump out someone who's perceived as being too liberal.
Against that overall backdrop it should be no surprise at all that only 21% of moderates identified themselves as Republicans on our most recent national poll to 46% who are Democrats and 32% who are independents.
Suffice it to say we'll be testing a challenge to the right on every 2012 Republican Senator whose state we poll from here on out to help us answer the question of whether any of them are really safe.
Full results here