Having trouble keeping track of all the Republican candidates? Dreading a protracted fight that keeps generating headlines right through the GOP convention next July? Have no fear because things will be nicely wrapped up before then, writes David Avella at Real Clear Politics. On March 1, 2016, to be exact. "Mark it on your calendar as when we will know who the Republican nominee for president will be." His logic: After the February contests in Iowa, New Hampshire, and South Carolina, the field will be narrowed to three, max. Then comes March 1, when more than a dozen states vote, and the winner will then be clear.
"After March 1, there will undoubtedly be candidates and their supporters who refuse to acknowledge that a final verdict has been handed down," writes Avella. "It won’t matter." The frontrunner after the March 1 contests will be unofficially "ratified" on March 15 when Ohio, Florida, and other states vote. Forget any talk you hear of a brokered convention. "The Republican penchant for order and clarity will evidence itself," writes Avella, a GOP national strategist. "Republicans love an orderly process. That is who Republican voters are." Click for the full post. (Read more Election 2016 stories.)