Leave while you still have some dignity.
We saw Mike Huckabee and Rick Santorum leave the race after Iowa. Carly Fiorina, Jim Gilmore, and Chris Christie all suspended their campaigns after New Hampshire. So it’s safe to say at least one campaign will end in South Carolina if they don’t get the results they were seeking.
The 50 winner take all delegates in South Carolina’s Republican Primary are the top prize for the winning candidate, but according to Scott Malyerck, what keeps the campaigns in the race are expectations.
“If you overperform, that’s great for you,” Malyerck said. “If you underperform, that’s bad.”
Campaigns like Ben Carson’s have banked on strong expectations in the Palmetto State, heading for South Carolina before the New Hampshire Primaries even closed. And after a stronger than anticipated No. 2 finish, John Kasich’s campaign is banking on the momentum to follow him to South Carolina polls.
But Malyerck says one campaign above all the others really needs to look strong Saturday.
“In 2000, South Carolina saved George W. Bush’s presidency,” Malyerck said. “It could do the opposite of Jeb on Saturday. Jeb Bush has thrown millions of dollars into South Carolina. If he doesn’t finish in the top three it’s going to be hard for him.”
Bush, as well as his Florida counterpart, Marco Rubio, have busted out big endorsements on the Palmetto State campaign trail in hopes of attracting voters — Gov. Nikki Haley and Sen. Tim Scott for Rubio, President George W. Bush for Jeb.