There's a lot of loose talk in Republican politics about the battle that's supposedly raging between outsiders and the mainstream establishment. Actually, the battle's over. It's the outsiders in a romp.
Look at the poll numbers, as averaged by Real Clear Politics. They show the relentlessly growing combined strength of the four main outsider presidential primary candidates: Donald Trump, Ted Cruz, Ben Carson and Carly Fiorina. Only Cruz, a Texas senator who routinely defies his party, has held elective office. Trump and Fiorina are business leaders and Carson is a retired neurosurgeon.
This month's polls show 64 percent of likely Republican primary voters favoring one of those four. Just 23 percent support one of the best-known insiders: former Gov. Jeb Bush of Florida, Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey or Gov. John Kasich of Ohio.
That represents a huge shift. Back in June, when Trump was just getting into the race and Cruz was little known, the four insiders were way ahead of the four outsiders, 35 percent to 23 percent.