Far be it for me to offer any pearls of wisdom to our friends on the GOP side, but I would caution them against trying to capture that mystical creature referred to as the "electable candidate."
Amy Davidson has an interesting post in the New Yorker's Daily Comment Blog questioning whether one should worry about Newt and his plans (available here ). Her ultimate answer is yes on the grounds of understanding the subliminal messages this court-attacking scheme sends to voters - particularly social conservatives - and correcting the historical distortions behind the proposal. Important reasons no doubt but they fail to recognize the true danger of this plan.
Namely, the role of the federal courts in constitutional interpretation is primarily a separation of powers question. If you peruse the limited Supreme Court opinions which analyze separation of powers questions or the more copious declarations from the Department of Justice's Office of Legal Counsel you will find that one factor tends to drive decisions - political consensus arrived at through historical practice.