I think Newt Gingrich’s decisive victory over Mitt Romney in South Carolina can be summed up this way.
When Mitt was leading in the polls by double digits in the Palmetto state it was because Republicans felt like they had to vote for Romney. But when Newt won by double digits it was because Republicans wanted to vote for Newt.
It isn’t to say that Romney won’t be the GOP nominee. His resources can’t be casually dismissed and Romney has already expended considerable resources in Florida. It could be that Newt won this battle but that Romney will win the war.
But now he’ll really have to earn the nomination because that aura of invincibility has been shattered and a lot of Republicans in Florida who felt like they had to vote for Mitt, could very well end up voting for Newt in ten days time.