It used to be the Democratic Party that was known for its fractiousness, with the old joke "I don't belong to an organized political party - I'm a Democrat!" being as true as it was funny. And while any political group that tries to raise a tent big enough to accommodate a majority of voting Americans is going to encounter a fair share of difficulties, Democrats have begun to settle down and concentrate on accepting more points-of-view and winning elections.
Meanwhile the Republicans have gone from the party that freed the slaves to a crazy-quilt of crazy, and keeping all of their factions together will take more crazy glue than China can produce or Walmart can stock. They have their God squad, corporate money-bags, pro-choice militants, women-haters, anti-immigrant people, racists, homophobes, the old plutocracy, the gun crowd, militias, anti-Obamacare zealots (while being careful to not be anti-Medicare), libertarians, Birchers, National Socialists, know-nothings, flat-earthers, and garden-variety bat-shit crazies.
The Republican agenda seems to be to recapture the spirit and essence of America in the 1950's, an idyllic time of prosperity and whiteness - a time that never really existed, at least not for much of America. But the Republican party is not concerned with the masses. Their solution doesn't involve addressing everyone's needs, but rather to win elections by disenfranchising voters who don't live in the right neighborhoods or drink the right kool-aid.
The news has been reporting on an interesting skirmish between two of the GOP's most vocal factions: the religious goobers and the corporate greed-heads. It involves the choice of cities for the 2016 Republican national convention. Billionaire Sheldon Adelson, a man who poured millions of his own money (from his gambling enterprises) into the 2012 elections, is encouraging the party to convene in Las Vegas, a move that would benefit Adelson's Sands Corporation.
And the potential Republican presidential candidates really, really want to please Mr. Adelson.
But the religious fundamentalists have issues with Las Vegas (a.k.a. "Sin City"), a place with more licensed hookers on the streets than policemen. Phyllis Schlafly and James Dobson, among others, are holding out for Dallas - a city where mega-churches are as common as fast-food joints.
(My guess is that drunken delegates will be able to get in just as much trouble in Dallas as they can in Vegas, but who knows? It is comforting to see Republican Party in-fighting more than two full years before the convention.)
The other reassuring aspect of the coming general election is that the Republicans have such a wide array of candidates from which to choose, many of whom are mean-spirited and will not take kindly to not being the candidate.
Democrats, on the other hand, appear ready to offer the country its first female nominee of a major party. The Republicans will brawl, the Democrats will genuflect to Hillary.
My how times have changed.