In April, we will see the early figures for Presidential candidate fundraising. A lot has been made of the absolute amount of hoarding that is going to take place in the next year. The following should explain why that money is going to be necessary.
Here is a possible if not probable (states are currently considering these moves) schedule of Presidential primaries for the Republican party:
January 8— New Hampshire Primary
January 14— Iowa Caucus
January 29— South Carolina Primary
February 5― Arizona Primary
New York Primary
New Jersey Primary
North Carolina Primary
West Virginia Primary
February 7— Nevada Caucus (Republicans)
February 5th looks to be Judgment Day. This thing will be decided then. Look for our Republican brethren in Nevada to move their primary date up to match the Democratic Caucus date, but it will be of little notice. This is the new reality and I believe that there are very few in either the running of the campaigns or the reporting of them who know how to approach it.
It means that you will not be able to ride an early victory or strong showing in either Iowa or New Hampshire to get the fundraising you will need to compete in later states. This structure would have doomed a Bill Clinton or even perhaps a John Kerry. If you don't have a large amount of funds to purchase airtime prior to January, you will be running blind on February 5th and are highly unlikely to compete.
I'll try to do some individual analysis for what this means for the campaigns of the candidates that our readers are following, but suffice it to say that if you do not see at least 10 million after a candidates name when the April reporting comes out, it is highly likely that you can just draw a red line across their name in your bracket.