Wednesday, February 1, 2012


The writing has been on the wall for a while now, but after tonight's blowout for Mitt Romney, I can't see any path to the nomination for anyone else. Over at Plum Line, I put it this way:
At this point, Romney essentially has the nomination wrapped up. Yes, people will point out that only a very small portion of delegates has been selected, but most of these contests are usually long over when the winner finally hits the mark that technically clinches it. Realistically, only some sort of external and utterly unexpected event could derail Romney now.
As far as I'm concerned, that's just about it. Newt will almost certainly stay in and fight through Super Tuesday in early March, although we don't know yet whether he'll continue going negative or not. And there's nothing wrong with that; to the extent that it was a real presidential campaign in the first place, there's no reason for him to drop out at this point. It's just that we, as observers, can tell that he continues to have no realistic chance of winning -- and if anyone doubted that, it's pretty obvious by now that he's just as vulnerable to attacks as anyone familiar with his record would have anticipated. 

More comments on Florida and the GOP race tomorrow, most likely. For now, congratulations to Mitt Romney.


  1. Like Wesley before him, I believe that Gingrich is only "mostly dead", as opposed to "all dead". The difference might be seen in Gingrich's hostile reaction to his implosion in Florida.

    If you're a Gingrich hater, his recent hostility easily fits your frame. Recall, however, that in his pre-boomlet era it was widely assumed that Gingrich's campaign was an extended book tour. Surely that's still in play, if de-emphasized a bit in favor of trying to win.

    If the party has settled on Romney, as suggested in the open, then it doesn't make sense for Gingrich to go nuclear, as the only effect of that would be to hurt subsequent book sales. You could argue this is just Gingrich being a hothead; however, the attacks certainly feel prefabricated, unlike say an angry candidate reacting to hostile questions in a presser.

    So is Gingrich's hostility sour grapes? Or is he trying to rouse the sizable anti-Romney contingent for another, possibly last, stand? If we assume that Gingrich, like most of us, is at least rational where his self-interest is concerned, then the answer is much more likely the latter than the former.

  2. I can see Santorum building some momentum that might make things a little bit interesting.

    Many of the professional conservative media pundits are not happy with Romney (e.g., Mark Levin) and may end up giving more vocal support to Santorum as this moves along (e.g. Malkin). Combine this with "Romneycare," Newt's antics, and the Mormon issue and there could be a groundswell of support for the seemingly "safe" evangelical conservative, Santorum--especially since many on the right-wing echo chamber erroneously think that any stooge could beat the "failed" Obama.


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