While Kos and other Democrats suggest that we shouldn't be upset when a Democratic candidate for Senate holds anti-choice views, take a look at what Republicans do when their members step out of line. Mark Noonan:
All conservatives want to do something about the betrayal by the Spineless Seven; but what to do is the big issue, right? Some want to punish the whole GOP, but I see that as self-destructive; it might even lead to a President Hillary Clinton on January 20th, 2009. Mustn't have that. So, how about we concentrate our efforts on getting rid of the Seven, or at least putting enough pressure on them that they might even think that a laudetory editorial in the Washington Post isn't worth betraying their own Party? We could call it Seven PAC; a political action committee designed to gin up and support primary opponents for each of the Seven ...
Damn. Don't piss off Mark Noonan. The right knows how to control its politicians; although they obviously failed in this instance to prevent this 'betrayal,' if they really can make 'the Seven' (Mark Noonan = drama queen) feel the pain, other GOP senators and reps will be much more careful about pissing off the right.
Maybe we should take a page from these folks? It seems like most establishment Dems are so afraid of losing any single election that they'll look the other way on almost anything. For instance, Joe Lieberman is up for re-election next year, and while there has been talk about mounting a primary challenge to ol' Joementum, it's not clear that anything serious will materialize. The Right, on the other hand, wouldn't fucking hesitate to punish their version of Lieberman by pouring money into a primary challenge. They would do this even if it risked losing the general election.
The Right's willingness to risk losing individual elections helps to consolidate their control over the party, whereas the Left wing of the Democratic party usually 'looks the other way' or even supports candidates like Jim Langevin whose values are inimical to progressives. I'm not one of those people who think that the Left should copy all the tactics of the Right, but I do think that a little discipline once in a while would be in our best interests. Because the Right knows that before you can control the government, you have to control your own party. So far, progressives have been unable to exert such control over the Democratic Party, and we are left with candidates that are often barely preferable to the GOP.