By Ken Feltman
The big news from Louisiana this weekend will not be Rick Santorum’s victory. He is cruising toward a big win. Conservative voters are abandoning Gingrich for Santorum, with a smaller number going to Mitt Romney.
Most voters are done with Gingrich. One put it this way: “Gingrich is like the guest who never leaves.” Another said “Why doesn’t he get the message?” A Republican official said Gingrich is in danger of “destroying any goodwill he has left.”
Gingrich may not care. But Romney and Santorum do care and will watch how the former Gingrich supporters split in Louisiana. So far, polls seem to point to a bigger slice going to Santorum than national polls have been indicating. But it may be too late. The one last hope Santorum had was to consolidate the “anybody but Mitt” voters and hope that the media reported a head-to-head Santorum-Romney race. That will not happen now. Gingrich lingered too long.
After Illinois, the media seemed to shift. The race is all but over, they seemed to be saying. The nomination is all but decided. How ironic that Gingrich wanted to stop Romney. Perhaps he has instead prevented Santorum from putting up a serious head-to-head challenge to Romney.