The Washington Examiner- hardly a liberal paper – has a problem with its own readers, many of them conservative GOP voters. So it came out hard to do a little house cleaning with an editorial that spent much of its time attacking GOP voters. If you don’t line up behind Rubio, Jeb, or Walker, you are a troll, in case you didn’t realize. If you are angry about illegal immigration, you are a racist. If you do not agree with the possibility of Rubio, Jeb, or Walker as the GOP presidential candidate, you really want Hillary in the White House. This isn’t lining up voter-ducks. This is duck hunting with a machine gun from an official Republican Party HQ-sponsored duck blind.

The excuse to attack conservative GOP voters was Donald Trump. And they saved plenty of ammunition for the Donald who apparently is: a Democrat-turned-GOP, a “bouffant billionaire”, ignorant about political positions, and a liberal until recently. He really must have hit a nerve among the GOP establishment, especially since he has polled – at least in some surveys – far higher than anyone expected. Is he all of the things listed above? Perhaps. But does he resonate with a certain percentage of GOP voters? Absolutely. Will he win the nomination? Of course not. Is he an indicator of voter anger on certain issues. Again, absolutely. In a historically broad and competitive field, all the GOP needed was for Trump to shake things up even more than was already the case.

The editorial has Hillary’s negatives in three swing states as its substance. But those states are Colorado, Iowa, and Virginia. So no surprise that she polls low there. And of course she can be beaten, and with the right candidate will be defeated. But how that GOP candidate gets decided on is becoming a bit of a civil war inside the GOP. The dividing line seems to be whether to pin the party’s hopes on a centrist big-tent candidate or on a conservative candidate that the establishment feels will isolate the GOP as the party of older white males whose time is almost up. That nasty little metaphor comes from the same editorial. Is it now open season on conservative voters inside the GOP itself? With bunker-style duck blinds and machine guns?