Place your bets! Who will be gone after Rick Perry?

Before we speculate on who will be the next to drop out of the GOP presidential race, I think we should show a moment of respect for Rick Perry.  Even Donald Trump was very nice to Perry, calling him an honorable man:

Rick Perry failed at the border. Now he is critical of me. He needs a new pair of glasses to see the crimes committed by illegal immigrants.

Oh, sorry, that's an earlier quote from Trump's Twitter feed, from July 5.  Interesting how two months can change your view of a man!

I was never hot for Perry because he claimed to be tough on illegal immigration but was anything but.  He made a much publicized move to send Texas's National Guard to the border, but they did not detain a single illegal.  Perry also signed legislation creating an entire university system where lessons are taught in Spanish, presumably for illegals, and he also supported in-state tuition for illegal aliens – if they could get past the National Guard, one assumes.

But worst of all, Perry was bumbling and inarticulate.  And Trump was right about one thing: wearing glasses straight out of Old Navy commercials didn't help.

So who will go next?  Here is my ranking, from least to most likely:

8) Lindsey Graham.  Lindsey loves the spotlight like a proctologist loves an endoscopy.  He won't fold for quite some time, though he probably will before South Carolina, to avoid the embarrassment of coming in 10th in his own state.

7) Rick Santorum.  Rick Santorum certainly will not drop out before Iowa, even if all the polls show him at 1%.  He lives in his own little world and is convinced that on election day, everyone who hasn't talked to a pollster will come out and vote for him en masse.

6) Scott Walker.  Scott Walker is down to 3% in Iowa.  If he can't win Iowa, he can't win anywhere.  But right now he can't get to 4% in Iowa.  Expect him to fold shortly before or after Iowa.

5) Rand Paul.  Rand Paul just got the rules changed in Kentucky so he can run for the Senate and the presidency at the same time.  But he hasn't been a very active, enthusiastic campaigner.  He seems to be going through the motions.  But since he got his rule change, he will probably stay in, at least until South Carolina.

4) Chris Christie.  Christie was supposed to be the Chamber of Commerce's backup man in case Bush faltered.  Well, Bush faltered, but so did Christie, and now Kasich is the new Number 2 for Bush, so Christie doesn't exactly have a purpose.  I expect him to drop out before Iowa.  The only question is when.

3) Jim Gilmore.  Jim Gilmore got in late, and people aren't quite sure that he's really there.  He doesn't seem to be actively running, and he's not even a blip on the polls.  He could be next.

2) Bobby Jindal.  Bobby Jindal is stuck at 1%.  He's right on all the issues but has no passion.  He also has a day job to go back to.  A very high chance he could be the next quitter.

1) George Pataki.  Pataki definitely will not last until Iowa.  I don't even know why he is running.  Perhaps his doctor told him he needed more exercise.  Expect him gone soon.

If you had to put money down, who would you bet will be the next quitter?

This article was written by Ed Straker, senior writer of, the conservative news site.

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