But the problem with Rove’s easy solution — which is reliant on new candidates, not new ideas — isn’t just that it’s blithely unaware of its own past shortcomings, or that it will likely rely on the same old-guard apparatus that felled conservatives in 2012. It’s that its stated mission is startlingly defeatist.

Crossroads President Steven Law offered this obtuse description of the new group’s objectives: “We want to pick the most conservative candidate who can win.”

First, this begs the obvious question: What was the strategy before, if not to pick conservative candidates who can win?

But worse, the implied desire to root out Tea Party candidates in favor of establishment and moderate choices is an entirely wrong approach that will cannibalize the party.

As 2010 proved, Tea Party candidates can win, and they can win big. That’s because the principles of the Tea Party — limited government, cutting spending and balancing the budget — are principles that are popular with most Americans.