The people behind Republican power, those who approve of and finance right-wing candidates, like their front men, and women, stupid and compliant. George W. Bush was a very useful idiot. He not only did what he was told, he did it enthusiastically.
Fast forward to Mitt Romney and Sarah Palin. These two losers point to a very important dynamic: one is a useful idiot only when one is elected. Failing to gain power ones usefulness disappears. While Romney and especially Palin remain idiots, they are no longer useful idiots.
What the right-wing string-pullers will next to is to search for another potential useful idiot. There are many to choose from.