Its surprising how much you can accomplish if you don't care who gets the credit
A couple of years ago I designed this graphic below to illustrate my view of the political spectrum. It is not a line that runs from left to right. The standard depiction enables our opposition to label us as extremists. I see myself as a Constructional Centrist. The mainstream GOP is somewhat to the left of that. Nazism is the extreme bottom as is Communism, and I show them close together because there is really not that much difference between the two.
As a Tea Party supporter, I sometimes find myself at ideological odds with the establishment GOP, but especially as of late, believe they have a point when they note that we must win elections if we are to have any influence at all on the course of the nation. Our problem as Republicans is that we fail to understand the way the left beats us. They adopt truly extreme positions and challenge us to compromise, which we do. The compromise moves us leftward and downward, but as is the case with a ratchet, we never are able to return toward the center. Then they engage us again with another extreme position, and the cycle begins again. The result is the catastrophe we have today.
We need fresh thinking. we who are ideologues must take heed of the admonitions of our more mainstream brethren, but they must give more than lip service to our insistence that we return to the principles that made us a great nation. I believe timing is more critical than our split stance. Before an election facing Democrats, support the candidate most likely to win, and after we take the seat, pressure that newly minted official to be true to conservative values. Easier said than done, but this is a goal I believe makes sense.
If we would widely use this graphic, we might be able to take some of the wind out of the leftist sails when they try to label us as extreme.