Kucinich has thrown his second-round support behind Obama, and the rumor is Richardson will do the same. The Iowa Independent chalks it up to a desire to hurt Edwards’ chances with second round votes, damaging his campaign and potentially elevating Richardson into the #3 spot as the race moves forward.

Likewise, the Clinton campaign would like nothing more than to take out Obama, and rumor has it they are willing to take a third place finish if they can push Edwards into first. Read Desmoinesdem’s excellent article on second choice math over at MyDD, but it isn’t just the candidates who won’t reach 15% viability who can direct their votes — candidates who reach viability can also direct and swap votes. If Hillary can help Edwards, she probably will.

The beneficiary of much of the Huckabee/Romney squabble seems to be McCain. As Tom Schaller notes, if Huckabee can damage Romney in Iowa, he goes into New Hampshire wounded and an easier target for McCain. Also, as McCain is on the ascent in New Hampshire, his support is coming from "independents" and pulling largely from — Barack Obama. McCain could actually damage Obama’s New Hampshire chances more than anyone, and thus rumor has it the Obama campaign may be thinking of taking McCain on directly there next week.

*Update: The Richardson campaign reports that they have made no deals.