Aw, heck. If Bill Kristol is willing to throw in the towel, then so am I. Over at the Weekly Standard Bill writes:
It's over: CNN estimates that Barack Obama has won enough delegates to clinch the Democratic nomination for president in 2012.
Oh—the Republicans? OK, I'll concede that contest is getting close to over as well. Mitt Romney will almost certainly be the GOP nominee. Rick Santorum is entitled to stay in the race, and to offer voters in the remaining states an alternative. But it's probably time for him to do what Mike Huckabee did in similar circumstances in 2008—basically to stop attacking the almost inevitable nominee, and instead to adjust his own message going forward to a positive and issues-based one.
Bill continues, offering to Mitt Romney a few words of encouragement--and warning:
For his part, Romney is entitled to savor a hard-earned victory. But not for long. He needs to begin to figure out how to win the general election. In a way, the remaining two months of primaries is a great opportunity for Romney. On the surface, he can go through the motions of finishing up the nomination campaign, using his current team and delivering his familiar message. It will look like business as usual. But beneath the surface, Romney should be quietly but purposefully developing a new and much improved business plan for the fall. Absent adjustment, Romney's effort to unseat the incumbent president now feels destined to recapitulate the losing efforts of Bob Dole in 1996 or John Kerry in 2004.
The former governor of Massachusetts has waged a campaign good enough to grind down a set of weak opponents--but not nearly good enough to take on a talented and ruthless incumbent.