On Super Tuesday, after a blast of last-minute organization, Rick Santorum won the North Dakota caucus. I spent a strange and happy chunk of my kid-hood in the city of Minot, barely an hour from the Canadian border, and I attended the St. Leo’s parish school downtown, just blocks south of the Souris River and the giant red neon sign of the Bridgeman Creamery. Because this was also a time when my parents happened to be grassroots crusaders in the anti-ERA, anti-secular humanism textbook battles of the late 1970s, I feel a sense of déja vu to see Santorum win in North Dakota.

This is another way of saying I watch him win and feel about ten years old.

The Wisconsin primary was a scramble anyhow, a frozen ordeal that started in February and cost the whole of March until the voting on the fifth of April. The Kennedys needed Wisconsin to prove that they could win in white-bread America. March is a lion of a month that far north among the Great Lakes prairies. There are no white-tie receptions in Wisconsin. All Hubert Humphrey, the straw opponent, had, really, was his bus to ride in and the fact that he seemed to understand these Finnish ice fishermen and Croatian-Slovene brewery workers, knew dairy politics and resort problems: This might be enough.