In a clear sign of the grassroots pressure on Republican leaders, National Republican Senatorial Committee Chairman John Cornyn just put out a statement embracing Christine O'Donnell -- a dramatic contrast with his group's curt response last night -- and writing her a big check.
Ben Smith reads this as grassroots pressure on Cornyn.
Last night, the NRSC had no use for O'Donnell. This morning, they send her a check. Either they think she's got a chance, or they are caving to grassroots pressure as Smith says.
PPP has Coons ahead of O'Donnell by 16 points, 50-34; this is compared to polling regarding Mike Castle, who would have lead Coon 45-35.
That's a 26 point poll swing, which may account for Cornyn's testiness.
It also means that no, O'Donnell has no real chance. And Smith is correct; Cornyn caved to outraged Tea Brain Republicans.
This is starting to pay more dividends. Not only do we win DE-Sen; the GOP is flushing money down the toilet to keep the Tea Brained happy.
Nate Silver's 538 gave Coons a 83.7% chance of victory over O'Donnell - and that was prior to the PPP poll showing Coons with a 16% lead. The most recent data Nate had to work with was a Rasmussen poll giving Coons an 11% lead.
Update: The Hill
Jim DeMint believes O'Donnell makes the party stronger.
But DeMint, the leader of the Senate Conservatives Fund, said the GOP was on track to being a stronger party ideologically with her victory.
"I don’t want the majority back if we don’t believe anything," DeMint said on Fox News. "So I think if we want the numbers, if we want the majority, then we’re going to have to stand on some principles that the American people believe in."