The Romney surge?

Not only is the Post writing stories about Romney’s improving fortunes, but even noted Romney skeptic, Jon Chait is coming around:

I have spent more than a year predicting the electoral demise of Mitt Romney. Here is a Mormon, once fervently pro-choice candidate running to lead an electorate whipped into a frenzied belief that Barack Obama’s health-care plan poses the most dire threat to liberty in American history, having imposed virtually the same plan in Massachusetts himself. Indeed, the economist who designed Romneycare also designed the Affordable Care Act. Romney has tried to elide the problem by citing a state-federal distinction that nobody actually cares about in practice, but even that turns out to be false, as Romney once supported the hated individual mandate at the federal level.

And yet here he is, poised to assume the Republican nomination as Rick Perry tries to stave off a total implosion

we may see a man walk into the nomination of a party whose electorate is dying to vote against him, simply because nobody else could stand in his path without keeling over.

Indeed.  As you know, I enjoy tracking the Intrade markets (even if my wife still forbids me from participating– yes, I know I could do it surreptiously, but that’s no way to have a marriage) and it’s quite interesting to see the dramatic movement in both Perry and Romney of late.  These markets aren’t perfect, but I think they are a much better indicator of relative standing and conventional wisdom than are the polls.  Here’s Romney’s latest chart:

Check out that giant jump in the past week or so.  In contrast, Perry:

Pretty clear where all the Romney gains have come from.  There’s a long way to go and I think Perry has too many resources to just disappear, but this is certainly an interesting development.

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About Steve Greene
Professor of Political Science at NC State http://faculty.chass.ncsu.edu/shgreene

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