Dave Weigel recalls these famous moments in British politics, when prime minister John Major was unable to corral enough of his own party to support his own policy. Blair - then leader of the opposition - pounced. The bottom line of today, however they try to spin it, is that a Republican president failed to win more than a third of his own party in the House in what most regard as a financial emergency. The collapse of the Republican party as a coherent organization is pretty much complete - and it's silly to blame Nancy Pelosi. Bush's Republicans increasingly remind me of Major's Tories, avant le deluge:

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.