Barely into their first term, some GOP representatives are already staring down the barrel of being challenged from within their own party.
It is miles to go before the 2012 Congressional races begin in earnest, but already some of the 87 freshmen who helped the Republicans win back the House last year are bracing for a challenge from within the party. At least half a dozen potential primary challengers to freshmen are considering a run, and there is heated chatter about more.
In some ways, the freshmen are responsible for their own predicament. Many won their seats after successfully challenging establishment Republicans in primaries, proving that a combination of gumption and the right political climate could overcome the advantages of incumbency.
Now, to some of the impatient and ideological voters who sent them to Washington to change things, the new House members may be seen as the establishment, and they face the disconcerting prospect of immediately defending themselves in the political marketplace.
And the quest for ideological purity goes on.