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Breaking news: Mitt Romney endorsing John McCain

February 14, 2008 | 11:29 am

Actually, you could have seen this coming. When Mitt Romney announced he was suspending his presidential campaign, he was looking to the fall and said a prolonged (and, unstated, fruitless) fight for the nomination would give an advantage to the Democrats. So he pulled the plug.

That explanation didn't make it likely he'd be throwing his support behind Mike Huckabee. And he won't. The campaign announced a few minutes ago that he'll hold a news conference at his Boston headquarters at 1 p.m. PST to announce his endorsement of John McCain.

(UPDATE: So what does this mean? Well, the campaigns at this point all come down to delegates, and if Romney's delegates wind up in McCain's column, Huckabee might as well stay in the Cayman Islands.)

The GOP nominee needs 1,191 delegates. McCain has 843, and with Romney's 280, that would set up McCain to seal the nomination in the March 4 primaries. And despite their acrimonious attacks and counterattacks during the campaign, Romney can claim credit for essentially bringing the nomination fight to an end. That kind of favor is likely to get repaid if McCain wins the White House.

-- Scott Martelle

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