From the beginning, the result of the Republican primaries seemed quite inevitable: among the candidates that threw their hats in the ring, only Mitt Romney was moderate enough, familiar enough, organized enough and had pockets deep enough to compete against Barak Obama for the support of independent voters. This time around, he was even less stiff than in the 2007-8 race - but not exciting enough to be the candidate of the Republican party's base, which went shopping for alternatives, turning the primary race into the roller coaster in which almost every participant got his 15 minutes of fame at the top of polls.

Rick Santorum was the last candidate to claim the frontrunner crown. With his signature vests and jeans, endless answers during campaign events instead of the usual candidate sound bites, he seemed the least probable presidential candidate – even before mentioning his ultra-conservative positions that made even some Republican Party voters feel slightly uncomfortable. The Self-proclaimed "Jesus candidate" wasn't the favorite of the Jewish community either - indeed, the Democrats turned some of his 11 victories into warnings that the Republican Party became too extreme for the Jewish voters to consider it seriously. But he did the unbelievable: from the ultimate underdog complaining about lack of airtime during the TV debates, he transformed the Republican race for a while, as he had pledged, into a two-man race, leaving former Speaker Newt Gingrich and Congressman Ron Paul far on the sidelines.

More importantly, Santorum turned issues such as family values, abortion, and faith into a part of the debate, forcing Mitt Romney far to the right of the place he would probably like to be. It won't be as easy to shift back to the center at the general election "etch a sketch" style, as one of his aides promised - the Obama campaign is working for a year now, documenting every Romney remark that might deter independent voters.

Santorum didn't have much of a chance against Romney's well-organized campaign and plentiful war chest. As his losses in the swing states proved - he didn't have a chance with the independent voters. He managed to get the center of the stage - but he failed to become a mainstream candidate. He probably could give a good fight in some of the 19 states set to vote in the upcoming days leading to the convention- but as Obama's poll numbers rose, the pressure on Santorum mounted, and his numbers didn't look promising enough, even in the April 24 poll in his home state of Pennsylvania, where he already had one painful defeat in his 2006 Senate race.

His unpledged delegates will vote for whoever they deem fit at the National Convention in Tampa come August. His pledged delegates will be obliged to vote for him - unless he sets them free, but Mitt Romney has already over half of the delegates needed to secure the nomination. With calls for Romney to consider a conservative running mate, Santorum's name might now be added to the pool of viable vice Presidents, and Mitt Romney regains his position as the inevitable candidate.