Even When Mitt Romney Wins, He Loses
Supposed frontrunner’s pair of wins this week need to happen again on Super Tuesday.
If you’ve been following along this week, you already know that former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney came out ahead of opponent Rick Santorum in a pair of primaries in Arizona and Michigan on Tuesday.
Santorum spins Romney’s narrow victory in Michigan as a non-win, or rather an omen for his chances in Super Tuesday contests next week. Because Romney won by just a three percentage points, he and Santorum will split the state’s 30 delegates.
Santorum liked that news so much; he nearly sung it to reporters yesterday:
(You can stop listening to that at about 1:11. You more than get the point after he giddily repeats himself about three times.)
Neither Romney nor Santorum is wrong to talk up the importance of next week’s Super Tuesday contest. On the outset, Santorum is set to have a less than impressive week. Romney still has a better ground organization than Santorum and can outspend him where it counts.
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich is also expected to do better than he’s done in the last three or four contests. He’s projected to win his home state of Georgia, a requirement both he and Santorum have professed to be a marker of electability.
There are 437 delegates up for grabs next Tuesday night. Analysts predict the contest results won’t change the number of candidates in the race. Romney’s primary wins, as the supposed frontrunner, have not been decisive enough.
It’s likely to be a knockdown, drag out well into the spring. With the next debate not schedule to happen for nearly three weeks, candidates will have to rely on stump speeches, town halls and rallies in states that they’ve put resources into.
One thing is clear; if Romney doesn’t have an impressive Super Tuesday, party leaders and voters will not forget it come this summer’s nominating convention.