The mainstream media is awash with criticism of Republicans, but it always denounces the wrong people. If you listen to the media, you'd think the GOP is being wrecked by people like Jim DeMint, Allen West, Sarah Palin, and the Tea Party. In other words, the real problem with the Republican Party is supposed to be the responsible conservatives who put their country first, want to keep us from going broke, and actually represent the people who elected them. Wrong answer, buddy. You want to know the types of Republicans that are hurting the GOP?
1) The Sell Outs: Liberals love pundits who claim to be conservatives, but tell them what they want to hear about the Republican Party. So, if you have no integrity, like say David Frum, David Brooks, Meghan McCain, Joe Scarborough, or Kathleen Parker, you call yourself a Republican, but spend most of your time criticizing your “own side.” Nothing on the Left ever seems to get you as agitated as the things the people "on your side" do. Liberals get a pass for the same sort of comments that infuriate you when it comes out of the mouth of a conservative. That's because when you're a performing seal for the Left, you have to be tame and balance a ball on your nose just the way the Lefties like or they might stop giving you fish.
2) The Purists: Of course, you can go too far in the other direction, too, like the members of the "I'm more conservative than you" club. These are the people who tell you there's no difference between the Republican Party and the Democrats. They take their ball, go home, and don't vote in the general election when the candidate they support doesn't win a primary. Issues like electability, the chances of actually passing legislation, and what the general public wants are never taken into consideration. This is how you end up with people who think we can do better than Scott Brown (71% ACU rating) in Massachusetts or that we can just decide to never raise the debt limit again, even though we've already spent all of the money. If you want to have it your way, go to Burger King because you're not ever going to get everything you want in politics.
3) The Appropriators: If there's one defining difference that separates Republicans from Democrats, it's spending. Republicans want less of it, Democrats want more -- well, at least that's how it should be. Yet, there are big government Republicans. There are Republicans who love earmarks. There are Republicans who think it's fine to fritter taxpayer money away, but they just want to waste a little less than the Democrats. These people are not just killing the Republican brand; they're helping to ruin the country.
4) The Bubbleheads: One of the idiosyncrasies of D.C. Republicans is that many of them are smart people, they're well informed, they have inside info, and they consider themselves to be conservative -- yet they have no idea how out of touch they are with the base and the rest of the country. This is how you end up with Republicans supporting Bridges to Nowhere, increased National Endowment of the Arts funding, or pushing comprehensive immigration reform and Harriet Miers. The average talk radio listener or blog reader has a better read on politics in some areas than senators and congressmen because they're not mired in that D.C. bubble with aides, consultants, pollsters, and lobbyists all pushing the same monolithic way of thinking. If you're a Republican in D.C. who doesn't get that, you're part of the problem, not part of the solution.
5) The Compromise Fetishists: There's nothing wrong with compromise per se. Republicans should be willing to compromise with Democrats -- if it's on a bill that will make the country significantly better overall. How many bills are there fitting that description that have been passed in the last decade or so? Certainly no more than a handful -- and none have been passed during the Obama Administration. That's because "compromise" in D.C. usually starts with the idea that Democrats get 90% of what they want and then Republicans negotiate to see how badly they're going to lose. Yet, we hear some Republicans lauding compromise like it's a worthwhile goal in and of itself. A compromise on a bad bill isn't a win. Did Republicans make a mistake by refusing to work with the Democrats on the stimulus or Obamacare? Should they have worked with Obama to raise taxes, pass comprehensive immigration reform, or to do another stimulus? Of course not! Half of stupid is still pretty stupid, stupid.