Conservative columnist George Will says that Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry doesn't need to worry about the "Republican establishment" derailing his campaign because they have been co-opted by the tea party.
"A lot of establishment Republicans worrying that [Perry] might give the plot away, do you think that is that a legitimate concern or can he come up and be a credible nominee?" ABC's Christiane Amanpour asked presidential historian Michael Beschloss Sunday.
"I think he might well be nominated," Beschloss predicted. "Because this is the year that Republicans think they're going to have a very good chance to elect a president, they don't have to be so careful... The more optimistic Republicans are about victory, the more likely they are to go with someone who is as full blooded a conservative as Perry is."
"There is no Republican establishment," Will interrupted. "Google the Republican establishment, you'll get 20 million hits. Google the Loch Ness monster and you'll get a whole bunch of hits. They're both dead or never existed."
"There is a tea party and many say they are outside the establishment," Amanpour noted.
"They are the establishment today," Will explained. "In fact, the Republican establishment died at the Cow Palace in San Francisco in 1964 when Goldwater was nominated against their frenzied wishes."
Watch this video from ABC's This Week, broadcast Sept. 18, 2011.