07 February 2008

Poor Mitt

In a way, it's admirable that Romney decided to put his kids' future before his own ambitions. Of course it was an easier decision to make once he realized that he didn't have a chance anymore, but it does arguably indicate something genuinely conservative in his character. Of course, he did go on to say he'd run again someday, but maybe he'll invest prudently in the meantime so he'll have fresh resources next time, whenever that might be. For now, good riddance to him.

So now it's up to Huckabee to maneuver for influence at the convention. He can argue that, the more delegates he gets, the more he can hope to push the McCain platform to the right, or at least toward his idea of the right. Both men might like the idea of a series of friendly debates, just so they can stay in the public eye while Clinton and Obama settle down for a long war. It might also be wise to remind primary voters that the upcoming contests still matter. After all, what if they hold a primary, and the McCain and Huckabee people stay home, assuming that the race is over. That leaves Ron Paul's people. The libertarian is now the only "real" opposition to McCain. He hasn't the clout or credibility to demand mano-a-mano debates with McCain, should Huckabee withdraw, but his supporters may have fresh opportunities for mischief if the GOP establishment lets its guard down.

Finally, let's laugh once more at all the conservative talkers who are now desperately spinning their failure to stop McCain into proof that the liberal media was wrong about their reputed brainwashing skills. I heard one on the Dan Abrams show say that he never tried to tell listeners how to vote; his sole purpose was to provide information that audiences could interpret for themselves. But there's no getting around the fact that conservative hosts told conservative listeners that McCain and Huckabee were not conservatives, and the listeners either didn't listen or didn't care. That sounds like the end of an era to me.

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