In his latest post for the NYT, Nate Silver writes on the near inevitability of the Romney nomination. (If you are unfamiliar with Nate Silver, he is a statistician who correctly predicted 49 of the 50 states in the 2008 presidential election.)
So why am I nevertheless fairly bullish on Mr. Romney’s campaign? Well, there’s still that issue of one of the other candidates actually having to defeat him. One of the more likely scenarios is that Mr. Romney does take some bruises in the early states, whether at the expense of Mr. Gingrich, Mr. Perry, Mr. Huntsman or even Mr. Paul. But then the other candidate runs out of steam. Mr. Romney recovers and wins, perhaps after a strong performance in Michigan on Feb. 28, on Super Tuesday.
Even candidates as strong as George W. Bush, who was in an absolutely dominant position in the Republican primary in 2000, normally lose a few states. The advantage of winning the prevoting phase of the nomination process known as the invisible primary is that you can give up a touchdown or two and then still come back to win the game in overtime.
But if expectations get too far ahead of themselves, Mr. Romney might be only one Howard Dean scream or one Ed Muskie teardrop from becoming genuinely vulnerable. Mr. Romney would be wise to ensure that he keeps them in check.
One of Silver’s links in the article is this very helpful list of endorsements for Republican candidates. Based on this list, Romney is doing pretty darn well.