By a landslide, according to Fox. So much for the Mike Pence groundswell.

Will the GOP make it a business-as-usual two-fer by reinstalling Blunt as whip? Stay tuned!

In the meantime, mull the implications of this:

The [Washington] Times reported Tuesday that four potential 2008 Republican presidential contenders — including Arizona Sen. John McCain and Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney — had called Mr. Steele to urge him to take the RNC post, but only if he won an ironclad agreement to be free to run the RNC so as to further the party’s interests rather than take orders from Mr. Rove.

It’s Karl Rove’s party. You just think it’s yours.

Update: Optimists face reality.

Update: How much of a landslide was it? 168-27, according to Hotline.

Update: Let the misery of others cheer you on this gloomy November morning. Along with the hope of more misery to come.

Update: Just across on Fox — Blunt beats Shadegg in the race for whip. Everybody drink!

Update: More schadenfreude:

Pelosi’s failed effort to anoint her own chief lieutenant fueled doubts among critics about the political skills she brings to leading her fractious party. It also sent a clear signal of what kind of leader she is: an old-style politician who puts a premium on personal loyalty, even at the risk of high-profile defeat.

Update: Blunt won by a landslide too.

Update: Quality snark here from Tom Maguire on the Pelosi debacle. “I eagerly await the panel presentation by Messrs. Murtha and Lamont tentatively titled ‘It’s All About Iraq.'”

Update: McCain calls for a return to conservative principles, which to him presumably means amnesty and infringements on free speech.