Well, okay, it sort of is. It’s a big state, especially for Republicans who absolutely must win there in November if any of them have any hope of beating the incumbent president, whose approval rating continues to slowly climb because of (slightly) improving economic indicators in certain areas and (again, ever so slightly) decreasing unemployment.
But seriously, we have to re-examine how we look at presidential primaries, especially in the post-Citizen’s United era. Especially this campaign. Because the only thing Mittens and Newt have in common is that they love their Super PACs—so much so that it’s a little uncomfortable.
A great HuffPost article details recent Super PAC spending on all candidates still in the race. They all have ‘em—even neo-libertarian hero Ron Paul. And, of course, they all want the Republican nomination for the presidency. To put it plainly, there is no incentive for any candidate to drop out of the race when they’re all being bankrolled by the same gigantic corporate interests.
So okay, Florida’s important. Romney might and likely will win there; in fact Nate Silver gives Newt only a five percent chance of victory on Tuesday. Traditionally, even if there were still a lot of states to fight through, that would be the end for Newt. Out of time, money, and volunteers, he would limp back home to his harem. But if there’s a Super PAC willing to keep the fight going, well, that’s exactly what he’s gonna do. Daily Kos caught a NY Times story saying that Gingrich was going to “stay in and fight until the convention.” His donors want a show, and he can’t disappoint them.
This year, the RNC will be determined by the phantom presence of Super PACs, not policy, not “conservative credentials,” not any kind of principle, good or evil, save one: the love of money.