The conventional wisdom now is that Texas Sen. Ted Cruz has no chance to win the Republican nomination, but that he'll fight on until the end anyway.
Both of those assumptions are jumping ahead of the facts.
Yes, his third-place showing in South Carolina, a state with demographics matching his strengths and one where he dumped considerable resources, was bad news for the Texas senator. He is now down to 2 percent in the Predictwise market assessing his nomination chances.
Yet he's one of five remaining candidates, and two of them, Ohio Gov. John Kasich and former neurosureon Ben Carson, are fringe efforts at this point. Cruz has plenty of money, and he'll receive a fair amount of media attention ahead of Super Tuesday, which is March 1. At least six of the 12 states voting that day remain good battlegrounds for him: Texas, Alabama, Georgia, Oklahoma, Tennessee and Virginia.