The 2016 contest in New Hampshire could wind up being the "Seinfeld" primary, a political event about nothing. Or at least one that clarifies nothing.
If current polling holds — and that is a massive "if" these days — Donald Trump will score a fairly convincing win. But after Trump, there could be a four-candidate pile-up. Jeb Bush, John Kasich, Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz are all tightly bunched behind. One of them will get the bragging rights of finishing second but none is likely to gain much separation.
If that turns out to be the case, then the question of who emerges as the "establishment lane" alternative to Trump and Cruz will remain completely unclear. Bush, Kasich and Rubio will likely all have rationales for staying in the race at least through South Carolina and Nevada and possibly even through Super Tuesday on March 1.