Well, yippee! Let’s all celebrate cementing dysfunction.

The theory here is that voters will be increasingly fed up and that Democrats may wrest some advantage from this development in swing districts. The dreary reality is that such seats are few and far between. The real-life consequence of Cantor’s loss will be to further diminish the already slim prospects for serious legislating, not only dooming immigration reform, at least in the short term, but raising the prospect of dangerous showdowns on the budget and debt ceiling.

Whatever the precise ingredients of Cantor’s demise — alleged squishiness on immigration, being out of touch with his district, coziness with Wall Street — Republican lawmakers cannot help but look at his fate and worry about the threat from the right wing of their party. That cannot be healthy for a well-functioning democracy.