Why Michigan Is Such a Big Freaking Deal
Some polls in Michigan are showing signs of a Mittens SURGE there. Notably, the Michigan-based Mitchell Research poll has him leading McCain 35% to 29% as of yesterday, with frisky upstart Michael Huckabee in a distant third at 12%. Also, haha, Rudy Giuliani is beating Duncan Hunter by one point, 3% to 2%. Now people have all their little theories about the meaning of Michigan, but it's as simple as this: (a) If Romney wins, we're back into a potential 4-way race, but (b) if McCain wins, he'll probs get the nomination.
I apologize! Just have to get it out of my system:
a) A Romney "gold medal" in Michigan would kill McCain's outrageous national momentum (he's leading national polls by double digits) and throw South Carolina into a three-way contest between himself, Huckabee and McCain. Romney's currently third there, but within striking distance; Huckabee needs a win in South Carolina to keep up the media love that he's using in place of money to win. And as much as we'd like to kill him off for good, Rudy lives as long a Huckabee-McCain-Romney muddle exists. Until Florida. Which I hope he will lose.
b) McCain winning Michigan in Romney's backyard would all but kill Romney (unless he really doles out for Super Tuesday) and give him enough momentum in South Carolina to squash Huckabee there, in effect killing that poor bastard's chances. Then, if he can make good with the establishment somehow, the Republican party might finally force itself to rally around a candidate -- especially since he's the only one with a decent chance of winning in the general.
Or something like that. I'll be covering the Michigan stuff tonight while Ken is getting happy endings in various Las Vegas casinos slash covering the Democratic debate. Bring your family!