Republican voters are going to pick a challenger for President Obama who is a pragmatic member of the party’s establishment — or they will coalesce behind a firebrand whose primary appeal is to the Tea Party movement.The only "establishment" candidate left now that Christie said no — according to the article — is Mitt Romney. So there's Romney, and then a bunch of others fighting for position as his non-establishment competitor.
Aides to Mr. Romney have long predicted that the nomination fight would produce that kind of philosophical contest. His top strategists often compare the Republican primary to a college basketball championship, with two separate brackets.Romney has already won his bracket.
So is the choice "stark"? If the bracket image is apt, then people who want an establishment type have no choice to make. It's Romney. Those who like the other bracket have a set of candidates to keep looking at. Where's the stark choice? We'll only get a stark choice after the other bracket plays out.