The answer, is that most people (not just Republicans) won't buy a hybrid until the economics work out, and until the cars available will be a minimal sacrifice in handling, room, and performance.
For example, the closest to a no-compromises mid-size hybrid that I have seen to date from a Detroit automaker is a Ford Fusion hybrid. But it costs around $30,000! An I4 Fusion can be bought for much closer to $20,000.
The author makes the argument that some conservatives will be attracted to the national security aspects of hybrids. I agree with this personally, and if hybrids become affordable, I would consider one even at a modest premium to a gasoline vehicle.
Without a clear cost advantage, hybrid sales have to rely primarily on the segment willing to pay more for green -- a segment that has been hard-hit by the financial crisis yet still seems to be growing. But if we really want to expand the number of buyers, we should develop new arguments that appeal to the Republicans who have been holding back. To look at it another way, every hybrid car reduces not just greenhouse gases but reduces our dependence on foreign oil -- especially the new plug-in hybrids under development. And that means that buying a hybrid is not just good for the environment, but good for our energy independence and national security.
Obama is doing his part to promote hybrids in many ways. One way that isn't as frequently mentioned is that his administration is not as friendly to oil drilling as Bush's was. Obama's policy will restrict the supply of new oil, which will drive the price up (and, of course profits to OPEC). This will cause people to consider hybrids, as gas goes back to $3/gal over the long term.
Even Republicans understand $3 gas.