MILKING HANNITY FOR ALL HE’S WORTH…. Trailing in the polls, extremist Senate candidate Christine O’Donnell (R) would love a boost from her party, which seems to have already written her off. Bur Howard Fineman reports that the radical Delaware candidate has an alternate approach to rally support.

[Top Republican strategists and officials] say the Delaware Republican is loudly complaining about how they won’t support her — and they are not — as a way to generate angry, send-them-a-message donations from her Tea Party base.

Specifically, according to two top GOP insiders, she said at a strategy meeting with DC types last week: “I’ve got Sean Hannity in my back pocket, and I can go on his show and raise money by attacking you guys.”

The strategy makes some sense. Hoping to pit the far-right party leadership against the further-right party base, O’Donnell figures she can remain competitive by telling activists that she’s challenging an entrenched establishment. The hysterical base, which would love to see the Republican Party become even more unhinged, is then supposed to rally behind O’Donnell’s cause.

And sure enough, just yesterday, O’Donnell appeared on Hannity’s radio show to plead for the cash that the National Republican Senatorial Committee isn’t sending her way.

But here’s the question: shouldn’t Hannity mind this kind of exploitation? Sure, he’s a shameless hack, but hearing an extremist candidate boast, “I’ve got Sean Hannity in my back pocket,” should cause at least a little discomfort, shouldn’t it?

C’mon, Sean, have some self-respect. Stand up for yourself. Don’t allow yourself to be used by nutjobs who only like you for your audience’s gullibility.

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Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.