It apparently takes a good electoral thumping to get Republicans to do a little soul searching. Key words: a little. The problem is, it can’t last. In part, it’s because they have no soul. But more than that, introspection isn’t what they do, because their core constituency, or "base," won’t allow it. (Seriously, has their ever been a better name for a political party's core constituents than the GOP "base"? Think about it.)
This is what happens when you cultivate a “base” that not only doesn’t care much about knowledge and intelligence, but that actually despises the concept. The reason current Republicans sound as stupid and bigoted as they do is because they need their stupid, bigoted white “base” to have a snowball’s chance in hell of winning anything. And since “winning” is the only thing they seem to understand, expecting any sort of moderation anytime soon is a pipe dream.
Anyone with any political sense at all would have demonstrated alarm over the emergence of an element as radical as the Tea Party within its ranks. Instead, they embraced it, and even nurtured it, because their “base” loved the concepts as discussed, regardless of their ridiculousness.