GILLESPIE: I think they will. Let's understand something. This is a conservative district. This is a district where a conservative -- this is not some swing district where having a moderate Republican, not a liberal Republican, but a moderate Republican who may vary with the party on some things has a better change of winning here.
GILLESPIE: ... conservative Republican.
GILLESPIE: I agree, but I just -- I don't think it's right to read too much into New York 23, in terms of this civil war that I'm reading about...
SHARPTON: Newt Gingrich was the one that said it. And I think we should read all we could.
I encourage civil war all over the Republican Party.
And I'm very encouraged, on a Sunday morning, to hear you, Ed, admit that the Republicans' candidates are chosen by these 11 guys at the top.
GILLESPIE: Not always.
SHARPTON: And I hope the masses of the Republicans rebel and divide all over the country.
GILLESPIE: My point, Reverend, is that was the exception. That's one of the things -- you know, usually, our nominees come through a primary process where the voters have a chance to express themselves.
MYERS: Really important point, which is the Democratic Part was able to take back the House in 2006 with a big-tent strategy, by opening the party to people who didn't agree on every ideological -- you know, the Heath Shulers of the world.
Will the Republicans be able to do that, if they want to win back the House in 2010?
GILLESPIE: One of the points I make, Dee Dee, all the time, is, look, if you look at what the Democrats did, they were very smart about it. They did get districts, one, carried by people in Oklahoma, Texas, other places, predominantly Catholic areas, where they might not agree on abortion as the party platform. But in doing so, in winning the majority in the House, they did not -- their party did not move to the right. The Democratic Party, if anything, moved to the left in that process. So I think there's a lesson we've learned there.
STEPHANOPOULOS: You're now going to see this play out in other races. We've Marco Rubio challenging Governor Crist for the Senate.
WILL: And primary...
WILL: He will win.
STEPHANOPOULOS: He will win?
WILL: Absolutely. Absolutely, he'll win.
STEPHANOPOULOS: Against the popular governor of Florida, the state of Florida?
WILL: Look -- look what the local caucuses are saying in their straw polls. Look at who votes in an off-year, closed primary. It will be the ideologically intense, and Rubio will get them.
BROWNSTEIN: You know, the problem with the civil war metaphor is it implies two equal armies contesting on the battlefield. There is not a civil war in the Republican Party.
You have a dominant conservative wing that is a larger share of the Republican coalition, by far, than the liberals are, by the way, of the Democratic coalition. And then you have, kind of, a moderate to liberal -- not even liberal -- remnant that is declining in influence.
And the -- and the ability of the moderate side of the party, I think, to, kind of, shape the definition or the image of the party is very limited.