It is hard to believe that the GOP is taken seriously as a legitimate party. The party can be broken down into four distinct factions, the racist faction, the ‘alternate state of reality’ faction, the evangelical fanatical faction, and the impotent faction. At any given time most Republicans tend to play a part in two or more of these factions.
The impotent faction of the GOP is generally characterized by those that are fairly conservative but understand that governing requires compromise. These are the guys that could return the GOP to the party that was a participant in many policies that moved the country forward (civil rights, etc.). Many times in negotiating with President Obama, John Boehner exhibited this attribute when he was willing to execute the “Grand Bargain” until his caucus balked.
The racist faction of the party is characterized by Donald Trump, Jason Rapert, and Tom Tancredo. This wing was called out by both General Colin Powell and Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson.
The evangelical fanatical faction is characterized by Todd Akin, Mike Huckabee, and Pat Robertson. This faction has a stranglehold on the Party as their churches skirt the laws and provide direction for their indoctrinated to vote as a block that is generally consequential.
Lastly, there is the alternate state of reality faction that is characterized by Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann, and Glenn Beck. This faction was used to basically to rile up their low information followers.
The Republican Party knows it has a problem. As the electorate becomes more educated, more diverse, and more beaten down by the GOP policies that are mostly still in effect because of the undemocratic nature of our system (a gerrymandered House where the GOP received less votes but yet maintains control, and the 60 vote supermajority Senate requirement for the passage of most laws), the GOP will remain an ever sliding minority party. The Republican autopsy corroborates this. Yet the Republican policy seems to be of the belief that rebranding the message is all that is necessary.