In at least one way, both Cruz and Jindal face the same simple question: What do they do if Trump and Carson don’t fade noticeably between now and the end of the year? Do they target one or both men, which is always a risky and unwise strategy in a crowded race, or do they simply wait and hope that others in the field take steps to undermine Trump and Carson?

Cruz isn’t betting everything on Iowa, as Jindal has done. Instead, the Texas senator has spent considerable time in the March 1 states, figuring apparently that his Texas roots and anti-establishment conservatism will have particular appeal in many of the states with primaries scheduled for that day, including Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Oklahoma, Tennessee and, of course, the Lone Star State.

While many in the media seem focused on who is “winning” today, Cruz and Jindal know that the key date for them is Feb. 1, 2016, not Nov. 1, 2015.