Yes, Virginia: There is a Republican Party establishment, though it might not function exactly as you've imagined: http://campaign2012.washingtonexaminer.com/article/k-street-and-tea-party-again-fight-soul-gop/488261
"Conservative insurgents pose serious threats this year to establishment Republicans in at least three open-seat Senate races. In every case, political action committees and lobbyists have hugely favored the establishment pick with contributions. One reason: The GOP establishment rallies industry donors behind the Republican seen as stronger in November. A deeper reason: The revolving-door clique of K Street and Capitol Hill operatives needs Republicans elected to upper chamber who are likely to play ball.
"We don't need a lot of Jim DeMint disciples," former Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott said last election cycle. "As soon as they get here, we need to co-opt them." Lott is now a millionaire corporate lobbyist whose clients include bailout beneficiaries like Goldman Sachs and Citigroup, subsidy sucklers like General Electric and for-profit colleges and government contractors like Raytheon. He likes Republicans who don't take their limited-government talk so darn seriously -- team players who won't rock the boat, in part because they are eying K Street jobs after retirement.
Where does South Carolina Sen. Jim DeMint fit in? His Senate Conservatives Fund in 2010 helped insurgent conservatives beat establishment Republicans in Florida, Kentucky, Nevada, Colorado and Pennsylvania. Also bringing money to the Tea Party wing is the Club for Growth, which figured in all those races and also helped overthrow notorious Utah porker Sen. Bob Bennett in favor of conservative stalwart Mike Lee. Lee, Pat Toomey, Marco Rubio, and Rand Paul aren't exactly "disciples" of DeMint, but they are decidedly not the products of K Street."
Longtime classical-liberal commentator Jeff Goldstein has a few choice words to say about these Republican Party establishment proclivities: http://proteinwisdom.com/?p=39881
"You know what? Screw it. Let the Trent Lotts and the John McCains and the Mitch McConnells — and the big business interests they represent — have the damn thing....
The establishment GOP is feckless and, in an important ideological sense, corrupt to its core. It's time it went the way of the Whigs.
The progressives, because they are more committed to the ideology of fascism, will ultimately sink this country. The modern GOP establishment, for its part, will watch and try to profit around the edges until the last bit of graft gets gobbled up by the cynical scavengers who mouth conservative platitudes while working diligently to push a ruling class agenda.
Me, I'm preparing for the rebuild. The best part of which will be when I find Trent Lott, bitch slap him, and take back a good bit of our stuff."
To which I must reply: Preparing for the rebuild how, Jeff? Are you at work on the founding of a third political party, dedicated to classical-liberal / libertarian-conservative principles, that can rise to major-party status and eventually displace the GOP? Because that's an "oaks, not mushrooms" sort of undertaking: it requires a profound commitment and quite a lot of endurance. The most recent attempts, the Libertarian and Constitution Parties, failed rather dramatically...and there's still a lot of argument over the reasons.
We who love freedom are naturally appalled by Trent Lott's sentiments as quoted above. They make it clear that our supposed political representatives cannot be trusted -- that relying entirely upon them, unconstrained and uncorrected, is likely to lead to dismay and destruction. But it is in the nature of the fundamental laws of politics and power that this will eventually be the case in any organization whose central purpose is to get its candidates elected:
They who seek power over others will always be those to whom power over others is all that matters.
That dynamic, which operates in all places and times, is what has corrupted both political parties. Look at the history of the two parties, not merely at their current decayed states. Time was, they were both pro-freedom, separated merely by a few aspects of policy. The resemblance was so great that Oliver Wendell Holmes was moved to write that "all Americans are Liberals, to one degree or another."
For the moment, our task is to buy time. Is the collapse of the Republic so imminent that there's no point in trying to save it? If so, then it would be better to allow Obama to complete the destruction, so that the true causes will be unconcealable. But I dissent from that premise. I think the United States, as badly abused as it's been and as far as it's strayed from the principles of its founding, has a decade or more left in it -- time in which we who understand and love freedom should labor tirelessly to build a replacement for the political organizations that have betrayed us.
Therefore: Support the Republicans for now, and allow Romney a turn in the Oval Office...and prepare a party to replace the GOP, and a candidate worthy to replace Romney in 2020, if not 2016.