It takes a very tasty headline to get me to click on George Will’s column.  This morning’s, The GOP’s Grim Numbers, tempted me.  And boy, am I glad!  The headline changed once you actually arrived at the column, A GOP Numbers Crunch, so I knew the Washington Post Online headline writers had beckoned me for a good reason.  Turns out they did.  This Will column is cause for rejoicing. 

The Bow-Tied One is in the dumps, and he wants the entire GOP in the dumps with him.  So he lays out the bad news, paragraph after paragraph:

But although only one-third of 1 percent of the national electorate — those who have participated in the Iowa, Wyoming and New Hampshire nominating events — have spoken, the Democrats have even more reason than they did three weeks ago to look forward to a rollicking November. Realistic Republicans are looking for shelter. 

Nov. 4 could be their most disagreeable day since Nov. 3, 1964. Actually, this November could be even worse, because in 1964 Barry Goldwater’s loss of 44 states served a purpose, the ideological reorientation and revitalization of the party. Which Republican candidate this year could produce a similarly constructive loss?

Got that?  Not only are things very grim for the GOP, there’s not a single GOP presidential candidate worth losing with, as far as Georgie’s concerned, because none of them would produce such a grand and glorious movement resurrection as Barry Goldwater’s loss did in 1964. Even losing won’t be fun.  No GOP presidential candidate has the stones– or the dedicated followers —  to lose heartily and then rally the party behind his message in a glorious phoenix-like rebirth.

Hanging around GOPers exclusively, George Will knows the argument they present for their downticket comeback in 2008. And he’s ready to puncture the primary argument very efficiently, with numbers that should make our Blue America candidates very happy indeed:

Republicans try to take comfort from the fact that 61 Democratic members of Congress represent districts that President Bush carried in 2004. But 37 of those won with at least 55 percent of the vote. Furthermore, 14 Republican representatives won in 2006 by a single percentage point or less.

Georgie can’t help stirring the pot a little, calling a possible Hillary Clinton nomination a gift to Republicans, one he thinks Barack Obama is warning against with "subliminal subtext." Even shit-stirring on our side can’t keep the Bow-Tied One from getting all gloomy again:

But even if Democrats nominate Clinton, Republicans must remember that Bush’s 2.4-point margin of victory in 2004 was unimpressive: In the 12 previous reelections of presidents, the average margin of victory was 12.9 points. Bush’s 50.7 percent of the vote in 2004 was the third-smallest for a reelected president (Woodrow Wilson and Bill Clinton won 49.2 percent in 1916 and 1996, respectively). Kerry’s 48.3 percent was the largest ever against a president being reelected. (In the 12 previous reelections, no losing candidate received more than 46.1 percent; nine of the losers received less than 45 percent.)

Funny, I don’t remember those numbers being featured much when Chimpy McFlightsuit babbled about spending his political capital on his mandate — or something. Now, suddenly, Very Serious People remind themselves and the Other Very Serious People that Preznit Staggerpuss never really had a mandate at all.

Finally, Will rallies as he wraps it up:

Republicans should try to choose the next president. They cannot avoid choosing how their party will define itself, even if by a loss beneath a worthy banner.

Democrats know we’re picking a President. GOP Cheerleader Number One tells his readers: pick a candidate worth a really big loss, because it’s headed our way.

I like that. It makes me smile.

{YouTube of Lily Allen’s Smile, courtesy of delabel}