The Parties Stagger On

Ivotedstephenmortongetty

I'm really chuffed about McCain. But his squeaker in South Carolina makes it both more likely that he will be the nominee and less likely that he will unite the GOP enthusiastically behind him. He may have to put Huckabee on the ticket at this rate, which will make him uncomfortable and the economic right apoplectic. A very narrow and divisive McCain victory wouldn't be as bad for the GOP as a narrow and divisive Romney victory, but it's not great news either.

Similarly, the longer the Democratic race goes on, the likelier it appears that Clinton could well win the nomination in a way almost designed to maximally divide and demoralize her own party - and raise her own national negatives to stratospheric levels. It would mean a Clinton candidacy in the fall that had actively alienated independents and repelled Republicans, while undermining a key source of Democratic support - African-Americans.

If both parties commit slow suicide, does either win in the end?

(Photo: Stephen Morton/Getty.)