America

With Santorum Gone, What Next?

Some of the morning-after analyses of what Rick Santorum's exit from the Republican field means for the 2012 presidential campaign:

— "Santorum's departure means [Mitt] Romney is finally in a position to draw to his ranks that part of the Republican electorate that until now has preferred his numerous rivals." (It's All Politics)

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney at a campaign event Tuesday in Wilmington, Del. i i

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney at a campaign event Tuesday in Wilmington, Del. Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney at a campaign event Tuesday in Wilmington, Del.

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney at a campaign event Tuesday in Wilmington, Del.

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

— "The exit of Rick Santorum on Tuesday marks a new operational stage for Obama's Chicago-based campaign, away from the game-prepping and office-opening in battleground states to a more intense one-on-one battle against an opponent who can now focus his energies exclusively on President Barack Obama." (Politico)

— "The focus in the presidential race now turns to how quickly and enthusiastically the party will unify behind Mr. Romney, and how free he is to turn his attention to a general-election audience." (The Wall Street Journal)

— A Romney-Obama contest could come down to four states: Colorado, Nevada, Ohio and Virginia, strategists in both parties say. (Los Angeles Times' Politics Now blog.)

— Santorum's supporters want him to keep speaking out on conservative social issues. He's been giving clear signs that he's going to do just that. (NPR's Don Gonyea on Morning Edition.)

— "It is fair to say [Romney] is a better candidate now because of the long and at times brutal primary campaign against tough opponents. Rick Santorum was his toughest." (Des Moines Register editorial.)

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