Last night, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker became the second candidate to exit the Republican presidential primary race. Walker's huge drop in support over the last two months means he doesn't have many supporters to send to other candidates, but his departure changes the race in other ways. Here are three:
1. New pressure on candidates to drop out and unify behind a non-Trump contender: Walker's exit speech last night was a not-so-veiled shot at the GOP frontrunner Donald Trump. "I believe that I am being called to lead by helping to clear the race so that a positive conservative message can rise to the top of the field," he said, and encouraged other candidates in the field to consider doing the same. Basically, Walker said he was dropping out in order to allow the part of the party that doesn't like Trump to start focusing on unifying behind a challenger strong enough to defeat Donald Trump. The more candidates that drop out, the easier it will be for the anti-Trump forces to align in support of a single candidate.
2. A quick scramble for donors and other resources: While it's true that Walker didn't have much support amongst potential GOP voters, he did have a number of high-dollar donors whose contributions are now up for grabs. As CNN notes, Walker's Super PAC was fairly well funded, having raised $20 million already, with the expectation of at least $10 million more in coming months. Other campaigns are already working hard to pick up Walker's funding sources—and, in some cases, his staff as well.
3. A boost to Rubio: The most likely outlet for Walker donors, according to a number of observers, is Marco Rubio. Indeed, shortly before Walker dropped out, The Washington Post reported that one top donor was already spreading money out to other candidates, including Rubio (as well as Fiorina and Christie). More generally, Rubio is now the best positioned to challenge former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, who so far has proven the establishment favorite, for the insider candidate slot.