A New Hampshire journalist fails to draw the obvious conclusion:
All year, New Hampshire independents have broken for Democrats by about two to one — roughly two thirds have said they’d vote in the Democratic primary, a third in the Republican primary. But in the last University of New Hampshire poll, there was a sudden and huge shift — toward Republicans. The poll found just over half of independents saying they’d vote in the Democratic primary and just under half saying they’d vote Republican. That might help Ron Paul. But if the NH independents suddenly breaking Republican in the last few weeks are not the anti-war independents, they might be switching to vote for McCain, who has pounded the pavement here in the past few weeks much more than any other candidate. Because New Hampshire has so few social conservatives, and most of them are Republican, I’d be surprised if those independents were suddenly deciding to break for Romney or Huckabee or Thompson, who is down into Duncan Hunter territory here.
Hope springs eternal in the professional anti-Paul pundit. Obviously no one is suddenly getting enthusiastic about McCain, his endorsement in the Union Leader notwithstanding, he’s been around forever. This is the sort of hint I’ve been waiting to see, it is the first clear indication that Paul is going to outperform expectations in New Hampshire.
A Ron Paul victory is still unlikely. It always was. So what? If you simply want to associate with a probable winner, then buy a Tom Brady jersey and wear it while voting Democrat next year. But if you possess any principles, then stand by them. As for the pragmatists, it’s worth noting there are 18 million reasons a Paul victory is looking less unlikely than it was three months ago.