The Chris Wallace Line

The honchos at the RNC-FNC machine, along with some Republican machers in Iowa, fear a Ron Paul victory. Why? Because it is asserted that Paul cannot possibly win the nomination and therefore … what, exactly? Should be ruled out of consideration in advance? Why hold a caucus at all? And Pat Robertson and Pat Buchanan? They had a more solid chance of winning the nomination than Paul does today? Instead of engaging his arguments about foreign policy or domestic spending, Paul's opponents are focusing on exhausted mini-scandals from decades ago and electability. But they do have a Plan B:

Leading Republicans, looking to put the best possible frame on a Paul victory, are already testing out a message for what they’ll say if the 76-year-old Texas congressman is triumphant.

The short version: Ignore him.

“People are going to look at who comes in second and who comes in third,” said Gov. Terry Branstad. “If [Mitt] Romney comes in a strong second, it definitely helps him going into New Hampshire and the other states.”