Expect a quick vote, probably before the GOP heads off for its February retreat.
As a media type, I am hoping for a happy warrior, a conservative, far removed from Jack Abramoff, and confident in the ideas that have powered the Bush Realignment, including the priority of the GWOT and making the tax cuts permanent.
Staff assures me that it is a wide open race with almost certain surprises in the three weeks ahead.
“Let fly the dice.” That was Caesar’s exclamation when he crossed the Rubicon, and you have to wonder how many among the relatively young Members want business-as-usual. It is a new Washington with the rise of new media and the press of the war. The base wants confrontation with the Pelosi/Murtha Democrats, and the old rules of succession hardly matter at all. Don’t be surprised if a generational split develops, even as it has in the Senate, where the class of 2002 and 2004 has pushed for the agenda on which they campaigned.
Pence and Kantor are the young talents. Watch those spaces.