Six months ago, it seemed the Republican nomination was Giuliani's to lose, but all those "in the know" kept insisting that former Massachusetts governor Willard "Mitt" Romney was the guy to beat. Come fall, as Giuliani's star began to fade thanks to his ability to project his sociopathy quite clearly, many in the establishment wing of the far right demanded and received Fred Thompson as a candidate, although he shambled rather than fell in to the race. Come Iowa and everyone was agog at Mike Huckabee. The one name that few took seriously was Sen. John McCain. Last summer, his campaign was on life-support, out of money and out of options.
Once Iowa was over, and New Hampshire surprised everyone, the big Republican story was the "strategy" Rudy Giuliani was using - a big win in Florida. Except, of course, that kind of didn't work out so well. The other big story was the way Mitt Romney was the center of a concerted attack from all the other Republican candidates. The beating he received took its toll.
This past Tuesday, Romney managed a win in Massachusetts, Utah, North Dakota, and perhaps somewhere else. Huckabee managed to scrape off the religious right for wins in the Confederacy. The rest of the night belonged to McCain. Even though he was touted as the "front-runner" by the press (although never actually leading in polls or delegate count), Romney, following Daniel, read the writing on the wall the King could not, and fell on his sword today to make sure the Democrats don't turn the keys to the executive washroom over to the hordes of al Qaeda who took all of Iraq's WMDs to Syria. Or was it Jordan. Anyway, he's being the good stoic, for the good of the party, for the good of the country and recognizing the reality that no one in the Republican party who actually likes him enough to vote for him.
It's pretty clear that, now that it's official, if Howard Dean is smart (and he is) the Democratic Party will turn its collective eyes upon the presumptive Republican nominee, Sen. John McCain, who has promised more and better wars that no one wants but him.