The GOP got rolled on the START treaty

And so the Republican leadership made this a purely political battle and—fresh off what had seemed a triumphant election season—suffered an astonishingly egregious defeat.

It is extremely doubtful, for instance, that the Obama administration will ever again bargain over national-security issues with Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz., the minority whip…

Kyl limps away from this face-off gravely wounded—a leader unable to deliver either on his promises or on his threats.

Sen. Mitch McConnell, the minority leader, shot himself in the foot, too, coming out against the treaty only in the last couple days—thus making the Republican yea votes seem like a rebellion within a rank-and-file that, until now, has been remarkably disciplined.

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