This morning, after Rudy Giuliani dropped out of the straw poll, a Romney staffer told Marc Ambinder:

"We shouldn’t be disqualified or criticized for their campaign strategy and tactics," a Romney adviser insisted to me this morning.

But after John McCain drops out because it will be meaningless, Romney declares victory:

"Our plan all along has been to play in the Iowa straw poll, and that hasn’t changed. Campaigns that have decided to abandon Ames are likely doing so out of a recognition that their organizations are outmatched and their message falls flat with Republican voters in Iowa.

If that’s his attitude, he can be king of the dwarves. But in all seriousness, this probably helps Romney a little when we have the actual caucuses. But there are no bragging rights for a meaningless straw poll. And that’s why the campaign produced the whiny response in the morning.

As I said earlier, there will still be some importance among "the dwarves." The candidate who performs best will have bragging rights. Just none for Governor Romney. But, as David Yepsen points out:

The Ames straw poll has become a shake-down of candidates that, for some, has replaced the caucuses themselves as a test of viability.

Thus the conventional wisdom is set.


cwpete · June 6, 2007 at 11:03 PM

This site is so funny. What’s this? Romney whining? Seems to me the whiners are the quitters bailing out cutting their losses short quitting. They can’t compete with Romney’s message or ability to communicate and campaign.

This means Romney has IA in the bag. Romney can now begin to divert resources to other areas so he will whoop up on McCain & Rudy there.

Romney whining? Nice spin guys.. Very nice.. Should be Romney winning.

karasoth · June 8, 2007 at 6:23 AM

And Gilmore is Dropping out

how funny would it be if only Mitt showed up

ee2793 · June 10, 2007 at 2:16 PM

McCain losing staff left and right, tanking on amnesty, choking on his own failure, the campaign struggling for signs of life. After Q2 #’s, he’ll decide to withdraw, stay in the Senate and help end the Iraq war for the American people.

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