I posted my first rankings of the Republican Presidential field two years ago, and frankly I'm surprised at how little my thinking has changed since then -- other than the realization that Mark Sanford is not going to be the party's nominee after all.
In large part, little has changed because the race has been so slow to get going. Much of that delay, from what I gather, is attributable to the whims and whimsy of Sarah Palin. Until she makes her intentions clear, nobody knows what the game looks like -- and so they don't want to commit their funding, support, time, name, etc. to a candidate whose fate might look entirely different after Palin makes her decision. The campaign doesn't want to launch -- and have people judging their money and endorsements -- while so much of the money and endorsements are on the sideline. And candidates don't want to commit to a strategy -- ie, playing to the religious base, joining the Tea Party libertarians, or selling mainstream-acceptable electability -- until they know whether or not Palin is going to take big chunks of the primary electorate away for herself.
Meanwhile, it's hard to tell Palin's intentions from reading tea leaves, because she just doesn't do things like normal Presidential contenders do -- for good or ill. She seems to be doing absolutely nothing, for instance, to prepare anything on the ground in New Hampshire. But, for all we know she intends to run without doing that. Hard to tell what's going on with her.