One of my main themes since joining PA has been to point out the extent to which contemporary Republican divisions typically reflect arguments over strategy and tactics, even as the GOP is increasingly harnessed to a radically conservative set of basic principles and goals.

Today’s gabbing over the Murray/Ryan budget deal offers some pretty rich documentation of my hypothesis, as conservative opponents scream that the GOP has again “caved” by “funding Obamacare” (anything that doesn’t “defund” it is “funding” it, you see), while proponents counter that getting fiscal issues out of the way will enable Republicans to spend each and every moment between now and November 2014 shrieking about Obamacare.

Some “civil war.”

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Ed Kilgore is a political columnist for New York and managing editor at the Democratic Strategist website. He was a contributing writer at the Washington Monthly from January 2012 until November 2015, and was the principal contributor to the Political Animal blog.