"What Brooks is arguing for is for Rockefeller Republicanism. The idea that you are ok with the New Deal, but you want a mean and flinty old man from New England to guard the money to pay for the largesse. But the Republicans just spend the last 40 years hunting that lot to extinction, starting with Goldwater in ‘64. But there is really no way to advocate Rockefeller Republicanism without admitting that ‘mistakes have been made’ – just as there is no way the Republicans can be the party of civil rights without admitting that ‘mistakes have been made’. Admitting you have a problem is obviously not enough. But it is a necessary first step."
It's well worth reading the whole of that long post, but I particularly enjoyed that section.