Super Tuesday Redux and What's Next
Well, today was definitely one for the books. While there have been some surprising results on the GOP side, I think that the once again, some in the media have stepped out too far in making their predictions for what is going to happen.
John McCain had a fantastic evening and won all the states that he needed to win, not all the states he wanted to win, but nonetheless, he clinched the necessities. Mitt Romney picked up some more delegates as well, but didn’t do as good as his campaign would have hoped in some key states. Then of course, there is Mike Huckabee, the candidate who really stood/stands no chance of winning the nomination, who played the role of spoiler for what could have been a fantastic duo between Romney and McCain. But instead of being the bigger man, Huckabee decided that his pride is more important than the future of the United States. Whatever his strategy was, it worked.
While we can gravel for hours about how Mike Huckabee doesn’t have a place in this race, I think that there are more important things that need to be discussed about this election, particularly the pundits and their calls to action from their soapboxes.
Tonight, while watching the returns come in on Fox News, William (Bill) Kristol, someone who has been wrong with just about every assertion he has made regarding this election, thought it would be fitting to suggest that Mitt Romney will bail out of the race after speaking at CPAC later this week. This is not how I see Mitt Romney going out of the race, and I’m sure his advisers don’t see it that way either. However, Bill Kristol seems convinced that Romney will leave the race at CPAC. At this point, that seems like an unnecessary move and a merit less assertion.
Currently (as of 1:18am EST) John McCain has 482 delegates, Mitt Romney 168, and Mike Huckabee 117. Despite the fact that McCain has a sizable lead on the other two, in looking at the next primary states, Romney might bridge that gap significantly. Just looking at some of the states coming up, here are some of the things that will be working in Romney’s favor:
- Kansas: Closed Caucus; many blue collar jobs that run the risk of being sent to China if change isn’t made. (39 delegates, Winner Take All)
- Maryland: Strong Mormon base, as well as strong community of business leaders. (37 delegates, Winner Take All)
- Virginia: Strong conservative base, as well as strong business base. Despite its proximity, many Virginians aren’t looking for someone whose been in Washington a long time. (63 delegates, Winner Take All)
If Romney can do well in just these three states, thats an additional 139 delegates. With a strong media blitz in Louisiana and Washington state (relatively cheap media markets), he could possible score some delegates there as well.
Then comes February 19th:
- Wisconsin: This should be a state where Mitt Romney can do extremely well. John McCain has almost no organization in the state (looking at his website) and Mike Huckabee doesn’t have all that much traction either. With Wisconsin’s cheap media market, advertising should be relatively easy. This could net Romney up to an additional 40 delegates.
Looking beyond, if Huckabee leaves the race by March 4th, Romney will have an extremely good chance of dominating in Texas (140 delegates), Ohio (88 delegates), Pennsylvania (74 delegates), North Carolina (69 delegates), Ohio (57 delegates).
To sum it up, this race isn’t over, nowhere close. The only campaign that should consider their exit is the Huckabee campaign, who truly is playing the roll of spoiler and not much else.
I’ve said it before, if Mitt Romney left the race, I’d be alright with John McCain and would help in any way that I can. However, if the nominee were Mike Huckabee, I’d just have to sit this one out and layout my 4 years rebuilding plan. It’s not over for Romney yet, it’ll just take a little more time and a little more money. Now that the expensive media markets are out of the way, I think Romney can get a better ROI for his campaign.
I’ll have more on this later.