This is the second time that the best GOP candidate, a conservative, was not on the ballot. Instead Moore and Trump became the GOP candidates. The DNC put Trump on the ballot while the RNC put Moore on the ballot. GOP leadership I believe would have been comfortable with Trump or Moore loosing to the Democratic Candidate. The excuses are gone since Trump became President. They now have all three of the critical elements to keep promises made for years to voters. There isn't a rush to keep there promises, and they are watering down the promises, YES YES. Moore loss prevents another vote in McConnell's caucus that opposes is agenda and a platform to speak to the public opposing him.
Elimination of Ted Cruz ended the change of conservative voices being heard in the GOP. Conservatives can only disruptive Congress, GOP or Dem agendas, but risk corrupting their principles by working in such an abusive environment. GOP attack the conservative more ruthlessly then Democrats. Democrats prefer to have GOP establishment candidates then conservatives. Both are willing to aim the deep state against conservatives. For example the IRS singling out tea party non-for-profit organizations.
President Ronald Reagan was the last conservative. He fought the GOP as much as he did the Democrats. Presidential W. Bush rejected conservative principle and his tax increase both ended Reaganomics and put President Bill Clinton in the White House. The GOP didn't complain much.
The Crown governments in the Colonies produced a wave of conservatism in America that created this country, but once the Crown was gone it started to fall apart into our two party system. Parties with self interests. Only when the parties became a new Crown government it seem that conservatism grows in popularity. Odious regulations on the states is causing a revolt but the state legislature that will send candidates to second method of drafting Amendment, a convention, may not draft amendments that return us to the founders principles.
Conservatism need to goes back to the grass roots and educate a voting base. Regulations on local governments today are so odious that even if elected conservative principles can not be applied. Thus education to create a ground swell to overwhelm the special interest is the only hope. That has happened twice it the past two and a half centuries.