Or possibly “mess,” depending:

  • Rick Perry’s definitely not certified, but is going to contest the results.
  • Newt Gingrich may be certified; there’s this report (via @allahpundit), but I’ve seen no confirmation elsewhere and the VA GOP site is currently melting down. [UPDATE: that report has now been walked back.]
  • Presumably Ron Paul will be next, as he has not actually gotten 15K signatures. [UPDATE: turns out that he was already certified.]

This plays out one of three ways:

  1. It’s Paul/Romney.  In which case, we have a problem: as @bdomenech notes,  “No party registration. Anyone can vote.”  Even if Romney wins, the Republican Party of Virginia’s name is going to be mud for a while among the grassroots.  Gov. McDonnell can also forget about a VP spot, should he be wanting one.  Lastly: expect the cry that the fix was in.  Whether you like it or not (I don’t, myself).
  2. It’s Gingrich/Paul/Romney.  I actually expect this to be the most likely scenario.  Awful for Perry, of course, but it still keeps the entire thing from looking like a backroom deal to keep Gingrich from winning Virginia – which will be alleged, if Gingrich is off the ballot.  In fact, I think that it’s being alleged now.
  3. It’s Gingrich/Paul/Perry/Romney.  I don’t know how they’d manage that at this point, but then the Democrats didn’t know how to pass Obamacare until they managed it, either.  First rule of political organization: there’s always an arcane rule.  I note this though merely for informational purposes; it’s low-probability.

Lastly: I’m not going to waste my time by telling people that they shouldn’t speculate about the fix being in, but at least try to find some evidence first, OK?

Moe Lane