I'll tell you exactly what Rob McKenna was thinking: Charlie Crist.
Sure McKenna may have jeopardized his shot at winning the governor's race in 2012, but he has to make it through the primary to even have a chance. And even in a top-two primary (or especially in a top two primary), he needs the Republican base.
Right now, establishment Republicans like McKenna who have worked cordially with Democrats, are running scared of their base.
Witness Crist, the once super popular governor of Florida who is currently losing 34 to 56 against Tea Party insurgent Marco Rubio in the latest polling numbers on Florida's GOP primary.
McKenna has spent a lot of energy trying to be a moderate Republican—a seemingly smart move to woo Democratic voters in Blue Washington. But suddenly he finds himself with a more urgent predicament:
Making sure he doesn't get bounced by newly energized grass roots conservatives.
In fact, this may work out well for McKenna. By playing the right wing hero (the angry reaction from the Democrats is exactly what he wanted), he may have turned his potential weakness on the right into a strength that he can ride right into the governor's office. (Or Patty Murray's U.S. Senate seat.)
There was supposedely no state Bluer than Massachusetts.