David Brooks, after the Iowa caucuses, Jan. 4, 2008:
The old guard threw everything they had at [Huckabee], and their diminished power is now exposed.
David Brooks (with Bill Kristol), after the New Hampshire primary, Feb. 14, 2000:
John McCain is taking on the Republican establishment. In New Hampshire, he crushed it.
While Romney embodies the leadership class, Huckabee went after it. He criticized Wall Street and K Street.
McCain makes the corporate and lobbyist types nervous. The corporate elites have invested heavily in George W. Bush.
Most importantly, he sensed that conservatives do not believe their own movement is well led.
[He] attacks a Republican establishment that has already rotted from within[.]
Huckabee's victory is not a step into the past. It opens up the way for a new coalition.
[T]he McCain Independents [...] topple the old establishment by bringing in new people. They create new alliances within the party.
A conservatism that loves capitalism but distrusts capitalists is not hard to imagine either.
[C]ampaign finance reform, special interests, and shaking up Washington ... can be understood as part of a more comprehensive ambition to reinvigorate citizenship.
Tells us more about David Brooks than the direction of the Republican party, no? As do the columns' respective conclusions. 2008:
My guess is Republicans will now swing behind McCain in order to stop Mike.
[T]he McCain insurgency is not just a fundamental challenge to the Republican party but a political phenomenon with potential appeal to the country as a whole.