It is scary to be a Republican these days with any kind of independent streak. Ask Dick Lugar or Orrin Hatch.  They may be joining former senator Bob Bennett's club of former members who weren't conservatively pure enough.

Orrin Hatch, for heck's sake. When he was first running for the Senate in 1980, Democratic fundraising letters used him as the poster child for the conservative apocalypse. Then he had the temerity to work across the aisle from time to time, even with his friend, Ted Kennedy.

Lugar, a great senator, by all accounts, on national and local issues, is now in trouble of losing to a Tea Party member.

Former presidential candidate Jon Huntsman opined recently that the Republican Party is becoming more and more narrow and intolerant. The former governor was recently disinvited from a party fundraiser because of some remarks he's made suggesting a third party might not be that bad an idea. He said pique is more reminiscent of the Chinese Communist Party than a grand old American one.

Mr. Romney, it's your party now.  Good luck.