Here's a fascinating glimpse into the disarray among the theocons and Christianists at the prospect of a Giuliani candidacy. They're contemplating a third-party challenge. Yay! Money quote:

The threat emerged from a group that broke away for separate discussions at a meeting Saturday in Salt Lake City of the Council for National Policy, a secretive conservative networking group. Participants said the smaller group included James C. Dobson of Focus on the Family, who is perhaps its most influential member; Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council; Richard A. Viguerie, the direct-mail pioneer; and dozens of other politically oriented conservative Christians.

Almost everyone present at the smaller group’s meeting expressed support for a written resolution stating that “if the Republican Party nominates a pro-abortion candidate we will consider running a third-party candidate,” participants said.

The participants said that the group chose the qualified term “consider” because it had not yet identified an alternative candidate, but that it was largely united in its plans to bolt the party if Mr. Giuliani, the former New York mayor, became the nominee.

They also seem to think time is running out to stop the front-runner, and if you check out the latest Gallup data on Republican support, you can see their point. The Christianists have suddenly given moderate Republicans an extra reason to vote for Rudy. If these religious fanatics can be forced out of the party at least temporarily, there's a chance their influence can be restrained for longer. Of course this is not an easy choice. Giuliani is potentially dangerous to the survival of constitutional liberties in this country. Giuliani or Dobson? Who's more dangerous to individual liberty? Discuss.

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