There is doubt that the Republican Party is a tarnished mess. It is obvious from the approval ratings of George W. Bush. The people of America gave them a lashing when they took away their control of both Houses of Congress in 2006 . Because of Tom DeLay and other scandals, they have been branded as corrupt. In terms of conservative (smaller) government, they lost their way by advocating massive spending programs and earmarks that easily exceeded the hopes and aspirations of your average "tax and spend" Democrat.
The Republican Party is quickly moving itself into a political wilderness. They have absolutely lost their way. The current estimates are that the Republicans could lose between 25 and 30 additional House of Representative seats in the Fall. In the Senate, they could lose another 5 to 8 seats. With numbers like that, it would only take a handful of cross-over votes from any sympathetic or liberal Republicans for the Democrats to override any vetoes. The Democrats could even block any attempted filibusters in the Senate. Except for foreign policy, it really wouldn't matter to the Democrats if John McCain got control of the White House. And, with a Democratic President in the White House like Barack Obama, there would be no stopping any liberal or progressive agenda coming out of Congress or the Executive Branch.
My guess is that it is too late for the Republicans to stop the bleeding in the Fall. It is quite possible that they won't even maintain the White House this time around. So, in order to regroup, they are going to have to re-establish, in the minds of Americans, what they are for and what they will actually do if they were "ever" given control again. To this, they might very well look at John McCain as the means to their renewed beginning. The polls are "screaming" that this is the kind of Republican that Americans want. They want someone who is tough on the security of our country. The what someone who will control spending. They want the Congress and the White House to work together for the benefit of all American; and, John McCain, a maverick when it comes to cooperation between parties, fits that bill. Most importantly, they want straight talk from the people they put in office; not the typical political pablum that our politicians have been feeding this country for years. In order stop their trek into the political wilderness, they need to develop and commit to a new "Contract with America" that Newt Gingrich so aptly crafted to win the Republicans the control of Congress in 1996.
My guess is that Republicans will have an opportunity to retake control once the Democrats fall out of favor with the American people. Given the fact that the far-left factions of the Democratic Party are well in charge that opportunity could come fairly soon; and, only if the Republicans are really seen as an alternative. I suggest they get to work now by firmly getting to work with John McCain. He is their Moses!