Why are “establishment Republicans” in Virginia flocking to Barbara Comstock?

Delegate Barbara Comstock is the new darling of the amorphous grouping known as the “establishment Republicans” in Virginia (the name largely given them by folks who want to make clear they are not part of said group).

If you ask me – and what do you mean you didn’t? – it’s a strange pairing. All throughout 2013, the “establishment” pushed – and pushed hard – for Bob McDonnell’s tax increase. They leaned on Republicans; they dangled a path to Medicaid expansion in front of Democrats to win them over; they leaned so hard on Ken Cuccinelli that he tried supporting and opposing it at the same time. They made it clear that they would tolerate no opposition.

Yet today, they are rallying behind Comstock, who is the only Fairfax County Republican who consistently voted against that tax hike.

Now, there are many of us in Virginia who are convinced that said tax hike did the party in last year.

Could it be that the “establishment” is actually listening, if only quietly? I can hope.