THE REEMERGENCE OF ‘WATERLOO’…. I’d hoped DeMint would want to avoid this word.

A top conservative senator on Thursday indicated he is willing to go to extreme lengths to prevent a vote on raising the debt ceiling, even if it hurts the Republican Party politically.

Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) said on the conservative Laura Ingraham Show that he is considering filibustering an upcoming vote on raising the nation’s $14.3 trillion debt limit, should it not contain other fiscal reforms.

When asked if that would serve as the GOP’s “Waterloo” in the 2012 elections, the senator replied, “If it is, then let it be.”

Deeper and deeper into the fever swamp they go.

On a related note, Dave Weigel reminds us that as recently as December, “only the most wild, untamed Republicans were saying they’d oppose a debt ceiling increase. Republicans were saying, on the record, that they would bring a ‘clean’ limit-raising bill to the floor.” All of this, obviously, has changed dramatically since.

Dave’s larger point is that the relevant players will make a lot of noise but eventually do the right thing, strike a deal, and raise the debt ceiling. I certainly hope that’s true.

But for guys like DeMint, who added this morning that’s he not concerned about default, it certainly doesn’t seem like Kabuki theater.

Steve Benen

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.