Via Andrew Wilkow’s producer Nick Rizzuto. Er, wasn’t DeMint the guy who said last year that he’d rather have 30 principled conservatives in the Senate than a filibuster-proof majority riddled with RINOs (my paraphrase)? Is Scott Brown, who’s pro-choice and who voted for RomneyCare — which is so toxic to the base that it may end up destroying Mitt’s presidential bid — really a “principled conservative” in the DeMint mold? To put it another way, with DeMint on one end of the spectrum and McCain and Graham on the other, which end would Scotty B be closer to? Hmmm.

If he is a principled conservative, let’s keep it a secret for a few hours longer. Because Massachusetts voters seem to have a different idea:

A Scott Brown victory tonight will certainly be huge for Republicans- but will it be big for conservatives?

In the sense that it could kill health care and other major Democratic initiatives of course. But in the sense that Republicans are best off nominating far right candidates who the party base is completely comfortable with not so much.

Consider this: 41% of Massachusetts voters either think that Brown is a liberal or moderate and with them he holds a 79-18 lead. 59% think he’s a conservative and with them Martha Coakley has a 63-32 lead.

None of this is meant as criticism, mind you; I am, of course, famously a Chamberlain-esque RINO candy ass myself. But it seems we’ve moved pretty quickly from “no more moderates!” to “let’s agree on the big things.” It ain’t pure, but it sure will get you a lot more seats.