How badly does Mitt Romney want to be President? If he really does, he will throw everything he has at McCain– temperament, immigration, taxes, conservative unity, “cap and trade,” and robo-calls — in a final, last ditch charge, a political Pickett’s Charge, to slow the McCain march to the nomination. (You may recall who won that encounter.) The risk to Romney: he stirs a backlash, McCain appears to rise above it, and both McCain’s nomination and Romney’s reputation are sealed for the history books. (Consider also that Romney is only 60 years old and might have other races in his future.)
How badly does John McCain want to be President? If he really does, he will show no trace of annoyance and no anger when Romney tries to get under his skin. If challenged on the latest flap over Romney’s alleged support for a timetable for withdrawal in Iraq, he will repeat in measured terms that he supported the surge and risked his nomination, but Romney played it coy until the surge was succeeding. As to all charges of disloyalty to the Republican party, he will simply invite the voters to compare their relative records of fidelity to conservative positions.
How badly does Mike Huckabee want to be Vice President? If he really does (and thinks he faces stiff competition from Charlie Crist, who helped deliver Florida and specifically the Tampa area to McCain), he’ll side with McCain on every dispute and use his most biting humor against Romney. The downside: an over-the-top performance may leave voters with a bitter taste in their mouths. (At 52 years old, he too may be thinking of future political runs.)
My guesses: “That badly” on #2 and 3.