A few days ago when Newt Gingrich routed Mitt Romney in the South Carolina primary, I thought it was the turning point in the campaign. Now, I'm not so sure.
Gingrich had an uncharacteristically poor performance in the Florida CNN Debate, and he may tumble a bit. I actually think Romney will win Florida because of his massive advertising budget there.
It certainly didn't help Gingrich when several GOP leaders came out and bashed him in public, including former nominee Bob Dole.
I still think Gingrich can fire up the base in a way that Romney never will.
But I see a clear path to the nomination for Romney if he continues to do well. He made the ballot in all 50 states, whereas Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum missed a few ballot deadlines or requirements.
Romney may not get to the convention with the necessary delegates, because Gingrich and Ron Paul will hound him all the way to Tampa. But if he gets there with a plurality, there will be pressure on the others to step aside.
I'm predicting a 6 to 7 point win for Romney in Florida, and a big win for him in Nevada.
That should slow down Newts momentum coming out of South Carolina.
Romney is not out of danger yet, but he is looking like he's in the best position so far.