GOP presidential candidate Mike Huckabee's announcement that he'll hold a press conference tonight is being viewed by political insiders now as the beginning of his likely exit from the 2008 race. Reason: We hear from his own people that Huck knows he isn't going to be president since he can't catch up to front-runners John McCain and Mitt Romney.
He isn't expected to toss in the towel tonight. Insiders say he'll be thanking supporters, but you know what that means, right? Huck swears he's in it to win it, but it's not looking good. His exit could come after the Super Tuesday results come in. Allies say that he wants to stay in, especially after Romney 'dissed him over the weekend.
His problem, say associates, has been that he never caught fire after his Iowa victory. It's a story that Fred Thompson and Rudy Giuliani know very well, and they never even won a state. And even though he won Iowa, say associates, he didn't have the ground game, staff, or money to take it further even in his kind of states, like Tennessee, Mississippi, or Missouri.
Huckabee's future is bright, however. He's a likely short-lister for a McCain presidential ticket. Better yet, he'd like to host a national talk show. His model: MSNBC's Joe Scarborough.
By Paul Bedard