Yesterday, after a disappointing showing on Super Tuesday, Mitt Romney officially dropped his bid for the Republican presidential nomination. According to The Wall Street Journal Romney was prepared to make the following statement at a political conference yesterday, “This is not an easy decision for me. I hate to lose. My family, my friends and our supporters… many of you right here in this room… have given a great deal to get me where I have a shot at becoming president. If this were only about me, I would go on. But I entered this race because I love America, and because I love America, I feel I must now stand aside, for our party and for our country.” Romney was already well behind McCain and the chances of him catching McCain were slim to none. This move is probably a wise one on behalf of Romney, and it will likely end up being helpful to his party.
The next question is whether Mike Huckabee and Ron Paul will drop out. According to The Wall Street Journal, Huckabee has no intentions of dropping out. "We're still in the race and we're still competing for delegates, and today demonstrates how long and windy to the White House this is," Chip Saltsman, Huckabee's campaign manager, said. If Huckabee really is planning to continue his run, this move by Romney should only help him as he now has one less obstacle in his way. However, he is so far back right now that things don’t look good for Huckabee.
Paul also doesn’t appear ready to throw in the towel yet, even though he trails all other nominees for delegates and has yet to win a single state. His campaign website makes it clear that his intention is to fight this battle all the way to the end, and because of his fundraising ability, he has the resources to do so. Still, the chances of Paul winning the nomination are slim. In order for that to happen, McCain would have to basically be removed from the race altogether, and unless McCain has some scandalous secret still hiding away, it probably isn’t going to happen.
It will be interesting to see how this all pans out and whether Huckabee or Paul follow Romney’s lead. After all, if they want to do what’s best for the Republican party, and if they want to have the best chance of having a Republican president, they would back out now. The more time McCain has to focus on the general election, and the more money he can raise, the better his chances. For the most part, he has already won the Republican nomination, but he can’t overlook the rest of the primaries just yet. It wouldn’t be sporting of Huckabee or Paul to just give it away anyway, and it doesn’t appear like that is going to happen.