So now it's down to basically two in each party: Obama vs. Clinton on the left and McCain vs. Romney on what used to be the right (and Huckabee, stealing votes from Romney in the hope that McCain will reward him later, maybe as veep). As I've said before, predictions are only fun if you go out on a limb in advance. So here are mine, which are worth exactly what you paid for them:
Democrats: After Super Tuesday, Hillary will be the nominee. Obama is a far better candidate, but the demographics are all in her favor. Just doing the math will tell you that her margins among whites, women, and Hispanics equal more eventual votes in more states than his among African-Americans and Ivy League students. I hope I'm wrong, but that's my pick.
Republicans: McCain has done the near-impossible--become the GOP front-runner while never winning over most Republicans. And the "establishment" really hates him. But sadly, the other choice is Mitt Romney, and he can't win. I'm sorry, but he's just tough to like. I've tried. I actually agree more with Romney's (recent) positions than McCain's. And I've tried to tell myself that it's not his fault that he looks like a Ken doll, and that it's just envy to resent his money, and I know his family life is a lot cleaner than McCain's.... but whatever it is, I can't make myself LIKE him. And if I can't, then he's not gonna beat Hillary. Period. That's the calculus--conservatives know that McCain will stick it to them if he ever gets in the White House, but that's still better than what Hillary would do, and a vote for Romney ensures that worst-case scenario. And if it's Obama, either one of them would almost certainly lose. So McCain will be the nominee. He's the least-bad choice.
Bonus Prediction: If nominated, I'll bet McCain picks as his running mate SC Governor Mark Sanford. Sanford balances McCain's age, and brings a solid Gingrich-Revolution voting record from his three terms as a congressman, plus a hatred of pork and a reputation as a bit of a "maverick" with a flair for "straight talk" himself. And Sanford was a McCainiac in 2000. He could do a lot worse (Huckabee would be a lot worse, as would Rudy, at trying to hold together the party). Hillary likely asks Obama. No, she doesn't LIKE him. But she'll do what it takes to win. I think he'd be smarter to turn it down, though, and live to fight again in 2012 or even 2016 (when he'll still be young by presidential standards, and a mere babe by McCain's) without having ever been tarnished by Clinton, Inc.
There you have it. By Wednesday, we'll see!