March 15, 2012

Is Newt Gingrich’s Presence Helping or Hurting Mitt Romney?

  8:31 am

Newt Gingrich in the wake of two losses in deep South States is seeking a justification for remaining in the race. When challenged by Brett Baier, Gingrich was unable to name a single state that he could win. Indeed, after playing hard as a “Southern Candidate” Gingrich has lost three straight Southern States including two deep South States near his home state of Georgia, so it’s hard to imagine Gingrich winning elsewhere. Still Gingrich claimed a roll in the race.

His argument for continuing is that he and Senator Rick Santorum are playing a “tag team” that is denying Romney the nomination. Gingrich argues that should he leave the race, his supporters will split between Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney and that Romney will turn all of his considerable resources on defeating his remaining foe-Santorum.

The second argument is fatuous. Campaign ads have not been running against Gingrich for some weeks, at least not in any number. The vast majority of its fire has been on Senator Santorum already and will remain so, particularly as Gingrich is no longer a serious threat.

The first argument is worthy of some consideration. The idea that the presence of two conservatives in the race has hurt Romney’s progress is at least mathematically accurate. One can’t take Newt Gingrich’s total support and added it to Rick Santorum. Without Gingrich in the race, some of Gingrich’s support would go to Romney. One poll showed with Gingrich gone, 56% of his supporters would go to Santorum, 27% to Romney and 16% to Ron Paul. Nate Silver of the New York Times did an analysis on this basis that showed that while Santorum would have won Ohio and Alaska without Gingrich in the race, Romney would have netted more delegates because most of the contests up until now have proportionally allocated their delegates.

However, in Alabama and Mississippi, this may not have been the case. Both states allocated congressional districts and an at-large delegation proportionally. With 56% of Gingrich supporters going to Santorum, Santorum would have won Alabama 51-36%, and Mississippi at 50.2%-39%. Santorum would have captured all the at-large Delegates for both Alabama and Mississippi as well as won a majority in most of the eleven congressional districts in the two states, leaving Romney with perhaps as few as six to twelve delegates as opposed to the twenty-three he won through Gingrich’s presence which left the winner with less than a majority.

Looking down the road, there are even more states that are either winner take all by Congressional District or winner take all by state. In addition, Nebraska and Montana will elect their delegates at their June State Conventions, so their primaries are non-binding. However, any chance that Santorum will have of getting delegates in these states will be greatly enhanced by winning the primaries. So, Gingrich splitting the vote isn’t going to help.

Of course those states that have proportional allocation with a relatively low threshold to obtain delegates that allow Gingrich to theoretically help stop Romney by winning voters who would have otherwise supported the former Massachusetts Governor. On the other hand, those that are winner take-all by Congressional District or proportional with a threshold above 15% are likely to have Gingrich advancing the cause of Mitt Romney by splitting the conservative vote and allowing Romney to win a plurality or a larger share of the delegates than he would otherwise.

How do the remaining states line up?

Gingrich’s Presence Will Help Romney
Louisiana (Proportional-25% threshold)
West Virginia
Arkansas (Proportional, but if a candidate wins a majority, they get all delegates.)
New Jersey
South Dakota (Proportional-20% threshold)

Gingrich’s Presence will hurt Romney:
North Carolina

Gingrich’s Presence Will Likely Help Romney
Rhode Island
New York
New Mexico

In fourteen states including California, the presence of Newt Gingrich will help Mitt Romney pick up delegates either by stopping Santorum from winning a majority of the vote (in Arkansas), enabling Romney to win either statewide or in congressional districts, by taking votes from Santorum in proportional contests where Gingrich is unlikely to reach the high delegate thresholds.

In three other states, the pure proportional nature of the contests and lack of thresholds means that Gingrich is marginally hurting Romney by filching a few delegates that would have gone to the former Massachusetts Governor. If we assume 12% for Gingrich in Oregon and Oregon and 20% in both Texas and North Carolina, that would give Gingrich forty-four delegates, of which twelve would have gone to Romney otherwise.

The five other states are somewhat harder to call. While Rhode Island and New Mexico divide their delegates proportionally at fifteen percent of the vote, results in other contests in these regions suggest Gingrich is unlikely to meet the threshold given the momentum in the race, so his presence is most likely to only reduce Santorum’s delegate haul rather than generate any of his own.

Connecticut and New York are dicier. Both states offer some delegates as winner take-all by Congressional District. The remaining delegates (ten in Connecticut and thirty-four in New York) are awarded to the winner of the state if he wins a majority. If no one wins a majority, the delegates will be split proportionally among all candidates winning 20% of the vote or more. Romney is expected to win both states. However, Gingrich’s presence could cost Santorum districts in upstate New York. In addition, if Romney finishes solidly under 50% in both states, Gingrich would cost Santorum at-large delegates.

There is one scenario under which Gingrich’s presence could hurt Romney slightly. If due to a Gingrich split, Romney wins in New York, but not with a majority (say with 48% and Gingrich wins 10%), Gingrich could help Romney win a Congressional District or two in upstate New York while at the same time he could hold Romney under 50%, allowing Santorum to pick up slightly more at-large delegates in one or both states.

Kentucky is also complicated. The state awards eighteen delegates winner-take-all by Congressional District and Gingrich’s presence could help Romney by splitting the conservative vote. On the other hand, it awards twenty-four statewide delegates proportionally with a fifteen percent threshold that Gingrich would probably still be able to get to. However, Gingrich would be unlikely to win enough proportional delegates that Romney would have otherwise won to make up for throwing even one Congressional District to Romney.

The math is simply against Newt Gingrich having a positive impact in terms of stopping Mitt Romney. Overall, Gingrich is now Romney’s best friend in this race.

However, the race is more than math. There is psychology and how voters and activists feel about the race. More victories and wider margins make conservatives feel more confident that Romney can be stopped. Santorum won three of ten states on Super Tuesday, a majority of the vote in Kansas, and single digit wins in Mississippi and Alabama. Without Gingrich, Santorum would have won five of ten states on Super Tuesday to Romney’s four, a super majority in Kansas, and won both Alabama and Mississippi outright by double digit margins over Mitt Romney. This situation may not have changed delegate math much, but it would have increased conservative sentiment that Mitt Romney wasn’t so electable after all and that he could be beaten.

Conservatives can win in fight for someone under one banner, rather than working under multiple banners and attempting to be too cute by half in playing strategy games.

The results are clear, as is the way forward. If conservatives want to nominate an alternative to Romney, their only hope is to unite behind Rick Santorum.



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"However, the race is more than math."

No it isn't.

I don't see a viable path for Santorum to win. If enough voters continue to support him, I perhaps could see him forcing a brokered convention, but in that case I would be surprised if any of current candidates come out of that disaster as the nominee.

If you can show me how Santorum is going to win 70% of the remaining delegates, I'm all ears.

There are only two votes right now: Romney or find someone else in August and pray they can put a national campaign together in 4 weeks.


Good luck convincing Newt Gingrich of that. 😛


"If conservatives want to nominate an alternative to Romney, . . ."

I don't know why conservatives would want to do that. Romney is more conservative that Richard Sanctimonious and Newtron Moonbase.

". . . their only hope is to unite behind Rick Santorum."

Nah, the best hope conservatives have is to dump Richard Sanctimonious and unite behind Mitt Romney.

The sooner, the better, for the party, and the nation.


Despite the attempt of many to argue that Gingrich and Santorum are two peas from the same pod, they are not. Santorum is a big government social con who is harvesting votes from social cons. Gingrich is a regional populist who only has strength in the south playing on the time honored mistrust of "moderate yankees".

Romney is drawing his support from fiscal cons like me and people who don't live and die by issues like contraception. His base of voters is much larger than either Santorum's or Gingrich's, particularly when you get out of the deep south which we pretty much are for the rest of the primary.

By the end of April, Romney will be even more comfortably ahead despite what Gingrich does.


Rick has no chance of entering the convention with a majority of delegates. Clearly, his "path to victory" involves winning it at the convention.

Were Newt and Rick to somehow enter the convention with a combined majority, then I suppose Rick could make a deal with the devil. I'm not sure, however, if a candidate's delegates have to vote for whomever he endorses on subsequent ballots. I suspect not.



Which voters, do you suppose, "live and die by issues like contraception."

Who do you suppose is voting on the issue of contraception?

Thunder (Romney/Rubio 2012)

Long blog, reasonable logic.

Here is the skinny. Up until now, Newt has both helped and hurt Romney. However, if Newt gets out, it would really help Romney. It is now a delegate race. Romney has 498 delegates, he needs a total of 1140, so he needs 642 delegates. There are 1358 Delegates left. So Romney needs 47% of the remaining delegates. So dividing the delegates three ways is not a good thing for Romney.

Now if you consider Utah which is WTA and Romney will easily win. 37 Delegates

Now if you consider DC where Santorum is not on the Ballot 17 Delegates

Romney really has a lead of 562 delegates which means he only needs 578 Delegates or 44% of the remaining delegates.

Consider Romney has won 56% of the delegates so far, in either scenario, Romney will be the nominee.


Matt "MWS."

The truth of the matter is most of the delegates from 30 different contests are not bound to any candidate, and that includes the candidate that won the respective contest.



I've listened to Newt talk about staying in until Tampa, and I think he is dead set against damaging his brand by bowing out early.

I think he's running for future speaking fees, book sales, and TV gigs and so will stay in it to the end.

So, my guess is that all four of the current candidates will be in the race until the end...


If this primary is only about "Stop Romney", the Republican party is doomed. Either he will be the nominee or someone not currently in the race will be the nominee. Neither Santorum nor Gingrich will come out victor at a broken convention. Romney could because the people at the convention can see he has the organization, the skills, the money, and the broader based support needed to defeat Obama in Nov. But if it isn't Romney, it is going to be another power name that has been dropped in the past few months - but not likely Palin.


Connecticut Gingrich much more likely to hurt Romney. Closed primary, so there will be no key Santorum voters, party pooper Democrats present. It is much mores likely that Gingrich being present could keep Romney below 50%, than that Gingrich not being present would help Santy to win congressional districts .



Romney & Santorum have the exact same public and private policy on Contraception.

Tell me where it is different. You can't......but that is not the point is it?



Give em severe "Land of Lincoln" hell Mitt!


The "race is more than math" meme is nothing more than demogaging smoke and mirrors.

Romney has more delegates because he has received more support and more votes than anybody else. That means he's winning the argument.

Romney needs to that message across. Mitt's leading because Mitt's winning the argument with voters.

Contrary to all the slight of hand the Santy is able to use to bedazzle weak-minded "conservatives," the only was a candidate can get more delegates is by getting more support than the other candidates.



"I don’t know why conservatives would want to do that. Romney is more conservative that Richard Sanctimonious and Newtron Moonbase." Now that is funny.

"Tell me where it is different. You can’t……but that is not the point is it?" The differece is that Mr. Romney is less knowledgable and more likely to be a loose cannon.


Great article, Adam. But I'm not sure how much Gingrich's exit would help Santorum. Santorum has had a difficult time establishing himself as the only acceptable non-Romney who can win the nomination. Gingrich is seriously flawed as a candidate, despite his intelligence and many accomplishments. Even if we overlook his mercurial temperment, his marital history alone would insure that the cultural right is ridiculed as hypocritical. A Gingrich nomination would be a disaser that it takes years to recover from. But even so, Gingrich did well in the South considering this factor. And a large number of voters who should be voting for Santorum based on overall ideology and going instead with Romney. I support Santorum, but wonder why he's having such a hard time with people who should be his natural supporters.


#12.....Santorum is on record saying outrageous contraception statements that should never come out of his mouth if he is serious about winning a general election.

Romney has more sense that to say things......and, as he told George S.: "it's working just fine."

(oh, and the things that he does say that the media/DNC followed on the heels by Santy and Ging and conservative 2 cadillacs, I like to fire, I know the owners.....are ALL attacking the capitalist system/class divide. The Repubs should be ashamed of themselves for ignorantly following the DNC's talking points.)


#14 love this: "Santy is able bedazzle weak-minded “conservatives,”

So true....

Mitt IS getting his message out. He have OVER 1 million votes over Ricky to point that out. The MEDIA and the lying of Sant and Ging muddy it for the "weak minded".


It looks like the choice is between either a Santorum-Gingrich ticket with 2 months to campaign in the General, or a Romney-Rubio/Christie/other ticket with possibly more time to campaign in the General.


Conservatives should stop burning bridges with the rest of the party. I listened to an angry rant last night on my local talk radio station as this man is so bitter that Romney is winning the nomination. He blamed Romney and the "establishment" for everything that has gone wrong in this country. He is completely oblivious that Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum have had their hands at the wheel of this country for the last twenty years. The ironic thing here is that had Rick Santorum not lost by 18 points in 2006, he would still be a senator today, would have had to vote on TARP and likely would have taken another one for the team. Romney has never cast one vote to increase the national debt, yet he is the villain, the archenemy of conservatism.

There's no rational reason at this point to continue being opposed to Romney if you are a conservative. He has promised to reform the tax code, to cut taxes, to cut, cap, and balance the budget and to protect life. He is strong on foreign policy and polls show he is the strongest to beat Obama. He appeals to swing voters in swing states. What's not to like?


fallacy in the argument here Adam is that Mitt stands to pickup a good share of Newt's support if Newt drops out. Santorum sure doesn't appeal to a large block of Newt supporters.

Thunder (Romney/Rubio 2012)

Smack1968 Says:

March 15th, 2012 at 9:01 am


Romney & Santorum have the exact same public and private policy on Contraception.

Tell me where it is different. You can’t……but that is not the point is it?


And it is also the same on Obama care, so what is your point?



"Santorum is on record saying outrageous contraception statements that should never come out of his mouth if he is serious about winning a general election."

Good thing Mitt never, ever, ever says anything "outrageous" or unbecoming a President.



Mitt's been called a lot of things... but a potential "loose cannon" is definitely a first. You're getting desperate.



Long blog, but interesting points.

My gut tells me that Mitt and Rick BOTH want Newt out at this point, but he's just not going to do it. He doesn't give a crap about the GOP coming together and beating Obama unless he's at the center of it.

As Dennis Miller said yesterday: "There's no I in team, but remember that there's TWO of them in Gingrich!"


Smack - the problem with Santy is that he MAKES the narrative all about his social issues. . .. even though he may have the same policy as Romney about contraception. That's beside the point. The media picks up on it and all we hear about is Santorum and Birth Control. UGH!!!!!!

Romney talks about the economy. DUH.


I've been here almost 5 years now, having dealt with, agreed with, and/or debated supporters of Romney, Huckabee, Palin, Rudy, Fred, Newt, Rick, Rick, Cain, Michelle, and just about everyone in between.

I have never seen any group of them have more contempt for Republican voters than Romney supporters. I have seen them, at various times, hate on Iowa, New Hampshire, evangelicals, the South, moderates, independents, conservatives, Tea Partiers, those without college degrees, those who earn less than 50k, those whose states don't touch the right mountains or an ocean.

Many of them carry this implicit (sometimes explicit) premise that anyone outside their tribe is either wicked or stupid. Often both.

It's like a group pathology.



The same social cons that Rick has been preaching issues like contraception and bringing God back to government for years to.

Surely you haven't missed him doing this. He never stops talking about it while hardly ever touching on marginal issues like say the economy.


Personally, I get the whole math arugument. BUT, I want Newt to get out so that people really take a good hard look at Santorum.

It remains to be seen just how many people are voting FOR Rick and how many are just voting AGAINST Mitt. People need to really picture Rick as our nominee, and try and play out a GE where he is up against Obama. Mitt may not be perfect, but I happen to think that the party will gather around Mitt even more when the alternative is taken seriously. Rick in anathema to Libertarians, and economic issues is not exactly in his wheelehouse... why would we want to nominate him?!


27 LOL. You need to try being a Romney supporter for one day.



Ugh... don't even get me started about your lame, backward, redneck state that doesn't touch the Rockies, the Pacific, and the Atlantic oceans!

And yes, I do carry the premise that anyone outside my tribe is stupid. By the way, do you want to join? We need someone to jump in the volcano in a couple months...



He's spoken to religious groups about contraception in a non-campaign, non-legislative context.

I roll with the sorts of people who scare and repulse you- people who go to church (at least) once a week, have 5+ kids, don't use contraception, pray rosaries at pro-life rallies, and either home school or send their kids to Catholic school.

Nobody is voting on the issue of "contraception." The HHS mandate? Sure. That's about religious liberty though. I talk a lot of politics, theology, religion, and morality with these folks, and never has anyone suggested a political program regarding contraception, except as it relates to abortifacients.


Mark PA,



Ugh....Romnots are crazy. Adam is 100% correct and Santorum see's a HUGE rise when Newt is not in the race compared to what Romney gets....look at Missouri if you had a question. Can he reach 1144? Im not so sure he can. But there is no chance Romney DOESNT reach 1144 if Newt stays in.


As you point out, he hurts Romney in some states and helps him in others. He certainly helped Romney and hurt Santorum a great deal in GA, AL, MS. The rest of the contests are just nearly a wash.

That said, if Newt stays in, his support will seriously fade over time. I predict by late April, he will be down to 3% and effectively be out. Even those 3% may just not vote if he were then to drop out. You mention CA on June 5. If he is still hanging around by June with his 150 delegates, he will be lucky to get 1% of the vote. Meanwhile Romney will get >50% as he will be on the verge of the nomination.

Another way that Newt can hurt Romney by staying in is the constant idiotic pettiness of Newt makes everyone in the whole process look bad.

McCain was sure lucky to have someone with the character of Romney as his opponent in 2008. If Romney wanted to, he could have gone down this same path, but chose not to. He know he could not get the votes so he did what was best for the party. Santorum is in the same position now as Romney was when he dropped out.



"McCain was sure lucky to have someone with the character of Romney as his opponent in 2008."

I'm glad I wasn't drinking milk when I read that.

"If Romney wanted to, he could have gone down this same path, but chose not to."

For purely holy and righteous reasons, I'm sure, as Mitt is merely an embodied angel.

....Or perhaps it was because the dynamics of 2008 were much different, Mitt has always been a paint-by-numbers candidate, and he was largely having to self fund at that point.



"Another way that Newt can hurt Romney by staying in is the constant idiotic pettiness of Newt makes everyone in the whole process look bad."

This is true, and shouldn't be overlooked. Newt tends to sully anything he is connected to.



You are right we are haters. I have issues.

Give em severe "pathological" hell Mitt!


#23 Matt. Mitt does not say the outrageous things Rick or Newt have said. Like I said,the comments he has made..........are NOT outrageous! It is all (Mitt's wealth remarks) the left has to throw out on spreads it, conservative in the middle, and Ricky and Newt (who have become millionaires off of gov't. influence) repeat the DNC. "Weak minded conservatives" buy it all.

*I have a friend who is NOT rich, has one Cadillac and could certainly have TWO.

*We DO want the option of "firing" businesses that are NOT working for us! Duh

*So WHAT if he is RICH and knows other rich people that own NFL teams? If that's a problem, change your party affliation to Democrat.

Yes, Santy whines about Mitt's $$ while hiding his $2Million home w/large pool in a trust. Yes, he's just like the common folk. Right. "Fake" comes to mind.

We disagree with Romnots because the RECORD shows Ricky is NOT a fiscal conservative. Period.

We are on the edge of massive financial cliff and people want to vote for the guy that doesn't pay attention to "NUMBERS"......but wishes for miracles.

Miracles will be needed, but we gotta have someone who UNDERSTANDS NUMBERS. It ain't Ricky or Newt!

TrickyRicky is a Jackass

Adam, the problem that your of course, unwilling to talk about, is that according to Rasmussen Reports polls, if Gingrich got out of the race, a majority of those voters would go to ROMNEY NOT SANTORUM. Your also forgetting that NO ONE believed Romney had any chance in Alabama or Mississippi even 1 week ago...yet Romney lost Alabama by roughly 6% points, and lost Mississippi by just less than 3% points. If someone had told me even 1 month ago, that Romney was going to lose both Alabama and Mississippi by just 6 and 3% points respectively, I would have said they were crazy. Also, exit polls out of Mississippi showed that evangelicals split right down the line between Santorum and ... wait for it...wait for it...ROMNEY. Its safe to say that Romney appeals to the MOST voters, of all ideology, where Santorum only appeals to those far right nut jobs that by themselves cannot win back the White House or Congress.

Time to get behind Romney, and I would dare to say, Romney and Santorum should just team up now, so that this infighting stops and we can focus on Obama. I would much rather prefer Romney/Rubio, or Romney/Rice, or even Romney/McDonnell...but if getting Santo to shut is whining mouth up, and start the focus on Obama, I would say...Romney, "pick santorum as your running mate now, make a deal, and move on to a fight against Obama."


Question for Santorum supporters- if Santorum meets his objective by preventing Romney from getting a first ballot victory in the convention, and then by some miracle stages a coup in the back rooms in Tampa and becomes the nominee in late August, what chance to you give him to unite the party, raise enough funds, and put together an organization sufficient to beat Obama? I give him zero chance to do any of those things. The question is what do you want at this point? I'm pragmatic, I want to beat Obama in Nov. and Santorum's not able to offr that this year.


"Another way that Newt can hurt Romney by staying in is the constant idiotic pettiness of Newt makes everyone in the whole process look bad."

Agreed. In fact, I think Newt now represents something new, almost Trump-like, in that his campaign is now not about the country. It is a personal campaign. Someone should have the courage to call him on it.

TrickyRicky is a Jackass

CALLING ALL SANTORUM SUPPORTERS...WOULD YOU BE OK WITH ROMNEY IF HE CALLED SANTORUM UP TODAY, MADE A DEAL WITH SANTORUM, AND MADE HIM HIS RUNNING MATE? I see several pluses with this...1) it stops the infighting and allows us to get the fight to Obama. 2) it brings in the voters that Santorum cant get, i.e., moderates, women, independents, non-religious, somewhat conservative, etc., voters...and it brings in the voters that Romney has trouble getting i.e., Evangelicals, Very Conservatives, and some Tea Partiers. 3) It all but eliminates Newt and Paul from the race, even though they could stay in for petty reasons, Romney and Santo would start winning all of the states together.

There are a few more reasons I have for this being an ok thing...for example, Reagan and Bush, H.W., teamed up and they didnt like each other anymore than Romney and Santo seem to not get along.


Tennessean for Mitt

Does Sheldon Adelson figure into this at all? I have not heard lately if he is still contributing to Newt. If he is still contributing is he doing it to hurt Santorum? He must realize Newt doesn't have a chance.


32. That's the problem, nobody is voting on the issue of "contraception", but the Obama media will make that the only issue if Santorum is the nominee. Okay, okay, not the only issue, but it would be about the Social issues. Unfortunately, the social issues are not what people are voting on. It's the economy.

Romney and Santorum are equal on the issue of the social issues. They both believe that abortion is wrong, will elect SCOTUS judges that are Conservative, have faith in God and use Him as support in their personal lives.

Romney is quite clearly better on the economy and in an ability to get hard things accomplished, such as getting on the ballot in VA and DC. And if he is the nominee, the message will be about the economy and Obama's failure as a leader.


Matt - also interesting is that Mitt gets more of the Catholic vote than Santorum.

I too have 5 kids; I too did homeschool; I too go to church at LEAST once a week. But I wouldn't vote for Santorum. He's a Washington insider who does not have my back! He made his money on the back of government - just like Newt. Fake DOES come to mind!



So are you saying that if Romney didn't have any of his own money he would have stayed in knowing he could not get enough delegates to win the nomination. If he was petty and vindictive like Santorum and Newt he could have stayed in with money or without money like these guys and with the help of Rush Limbaugh and the stop McCain crowd, stayed in as long as he wished. McCain would have still got the nomination but not until May (rather than after super Tuesday).



No, I think Mitt would have probably still dropped out, as he is a paint-by-numbers candidate, like I said. But I'm sure weighing the risk/return on his money probably helped push the decision.

And refusing to let Mitt win by acclamation is hardly being "petty and vindictive". These guys think they can either win, or at least will have more influence, with a brokered convention.

Think of it like a hostile takeover from a minority shareholder position. 😉



Okay. My point is that I'm neck deep in the anti-contraception crowd, and nobody votes that issue, like Boomer suggested.

I wasn't meaning to imply anyone is as righteous as you and Mitt.


Didn't Santorum rationalize voting for Sotomayer...........but has repeatedly bashed Mitt on MA judges..which the Gov. does not decide??

#47 James EXCELLENT point! Mitt = Servant Statesman (and what's best for the GOP)

Ricky + Newt = 2 self serving POLITICIANS who have NO CLUE what they are doing to our chances to unseat BHO in Nov.......OR.....they do.......


38 - NOSTRADAMUS - you are my favorite poster; I always look forward to your "Give 'em severe ____________ hell, Mitt" lines. . . . they never fail to make me chuckle. Thank you!


#50.......oh, GRACIOUS! If ANYONE is SANCTIMONIOUS, it is without a doubt ----> Santorum!!

His holier than thou has totally turned off ANY respect I had before for him.


Oh thanks Matt - for cleaning up . Gotta run now and polish my halo. After I drop off my rosary beads at the cleaners. . . .


53 - *clearing that up.*


Ugh, sick of process discussions. Where's the policy? To Gingrich's credit he has at least driven the energy debate.


"Mitt = Servant Statesman"

Some of you guys- with your fawning admiration and hero worship- remind me of those Obama supporters who would show up on YouTube, either having their little children sing songs to Dear Leader, or dressing in camo and barking allegiance in a military cadence.


Matt - Problem for your boy Santorum, is that he MAKES the narrative ALL about contraception and yes, his righteous sanctimonious issues. We are all FED up with it. And you think this is going to win the General in November??? Good grief! All I hear out here in So Cal from the Dems and Indies, is what a freak job Santorum is with his contraception crap! He scares the crap out of most of us!!


56 - oh wait - are you talking about Santorum now??


Nostradumbass, have you ever finished a post without the line "give them severe ______ hell"? Just wondering. It could be that I just notice that line and then look and see your name and not that you actually use it in EVERY post, but im interested to know. Why would Mitt Romney want to give anyone hell? He is religious after all, isnt he? Dont Mormons spend like 2 years trying to get people saved?



Santorum is not my "boy." He's a terrible candidate. I've for at least a few months now that I'm casting a protest vote for the Habsburgs, and thumbing my nose at this whole sorry lot of candidates.


Romney/Santorum would be a gawdawful ticket. In fact, the possibility of that has been the only thing tempering my enthusiasm for a contested convention.



Lighten up dude


60. Why not thumb your nose at the sorry excuse for a dynasty known as the Habsburgs, and vote Hohenzollern?



I do it for us Rombots who endure all the arrows.

This one's for you Kermit:

Give em severe "amphibian" hell Mitt!



Does Illinois allow write-ins? I've been shocked at how many states have totally disallowed write-ins during the primary- a few have even disallowed them during the general. I think Maryland allows you to vote uncommitted but most states don't even go that far.



"These guys think they can either win, or at least will have more influence, with a brokered convention."

That's why they are self serving. A brokered convention would be a disaster for the Republicans. Please make the argument that it would be good for the nominee.

Also Adam,

Please write a lengthy post about how a brokered convention with an eventual Santorum nomination (who may have started out with fewer delegates than Romney but eventually won on August 30) would be good for the Republicans and increase our chances in November? How is he going to raise the money and build an organization in 4 weeks with half the party totally pissed at him? If you can't do that then explain to me how Santorum will get to 1144, because even he does not believe that.


59. How sad. You must be a pretty miserable person.



I live for the irony.

Give em severe "Dumbass" hell Mitt!



IL directly elects delegates, so I'm not sure who they would write in.



The Habsburgs are to the Hohenzollerns as the Sistine Chapel is to my kindergartener's coloring book.



"Romney/Santorum would be a gawdawful ticket."

Amen to that. About the only worse ticket I've ever seen proposed on these pages (in all seriousness) was Romney/Hatch, put forth by some overly-enthusiastic Rombot last cycle.

Rick doesn't really have much of a constituency. He's a vehicle of protest and despair. He brings nothing to the ticket that Huckabee wouldn't deliver 10x more.



"Does Illinois allow write-ins?"

Yes. But to "officially count" in the tally, I think the write in has to be registered and recognized in Springfield.


The Habsburgs are to the Hohenzollerns as pumice is to platinum.


Anyone supporting Rick Santorum at this point is supporting Obama.

Santorum and his campaign have admitted that their path to victory is impossible without entering a brokered convention. If we enter a brokered convention, we don't have a nominee until early September, just two months before election day. If we only have 60 days to build an organization, stake out strategy, pass through national scrutiny, unite the party, focus on Obama, and do all the fundraising and organizing, how can we expect to beat Obama?

We can't.

If we have a brokered convention, we lose to Obama. There is no disputing that. So anyone supporting Santorum is supporting a brokered convention, and by default, supporting Obama.


Can someone like masscon, who knows wtf they are talking about, tell me why Romney doesnt select a VP candidate right now that could just end this thing? I mean honestly as a Santorum supporter who is actually supporting Santorum (not just an ABR), I would love to see a much stronger candidate than Santorum, but I dont think Mitt will make social issues an issue....but if he would just grab Huckabee or McDonnell or a staunch socon RIGHT NOW I think he'd see alot of people who are on the fence start moving his direction. Maybe I am wrong, but I dont think so.



>>Okay. My point is that I’m neck deep in the anti-contraception crowd, and nobody votes that issue, like Boomer suggested.

I didn't know you presumed to speak for an entire movement. And while Santorum has talked specifically about his views on contraception and government that is more a euphemism for Santorum's entire campaign.

The larger point remains as you well know. Santorum has run as the ultra-relgious (interestingly, he himself admits that he wasn't religious at all until he met his future father-in-law and now he can't stop talking about it) candidate who's entire campaign is built on social issues (again, interestingly enough he claims he was mostly ambivalent to the topic of abortion until he decided to run for office in a pro-life district). Santorum rarely talks about the single most important issue of our time which is the economy and ongoing meltdown of the entitlement programs unless it is to talk about them in vague terms or make silly proposals like sectioning off parts of the tax code to help only certain groups like manufacturers. Pander 101.

Reginald from texas

the problem is that Santorum is fiscally liberal. we need a real conservative in the white house.


74. I disagree about a BC. I dont think a big name like Huckabee or maybe even Mitch Daniels would need much time at all....and it would be such a huge breath of fresh air compared to the current crop of candidates that it would electrify the base. I am all for a BC. In fact I support a BC more than I support Santorum, lol...sad but true.


I've heard rumor that Santorum was open to the VP position. Romney rather nixed that idea with recent statements.



The chances a brokered convention ends in us selecting someone who's receive zero votes, raised zero dollars for the GE, done zero campaigning, and expressed zero interest in the office are zero.

Thus, a brokered convention re-elects Obama because we will have shot our nominee in the leg by not wrapping this thing up until Septemnber.


A well-managed brokered convention would attract viewers and would provide a great platform. Plus, everyone is talking contested not brokered convention, the former being not nearly as messy as the latter. And the outcome of a contested convention would probably simply be control over the VP selection.

Speaking of - news of Rubio hiring an investigator to vet himself is just weird, like Sean Young dressing up like Catwoman for the director (she didn't get the part).



The reign of the Habsburgs is to the reign of the Hohenzollerns as the Mesozoic Era is to an NFL season.



Perhaps Mitt could wrap this thing up with a good VP selection, but there would be plenty of backlash because he's be seen as presumptuous. Some people would be ecstatic, others would be furious. I'd advise against it.


79...Romney would be an idiot to take Santorum as VP....Santorum completely cancels out ANY benefit Romney would have of gaining the Indy vote. Mitt and Rick have 2 different and legit strategies for beating obama. Mitt's is gaining the indy vote and targeting a VP that will bring in a voting block such as socons without destroying his indy vote (a guy like huck, mcdonnell, rubio, etc). Santorum's plan is to fire up the social right that got bush 2 terms and pick a VP that brings in something he is missing...maybe someone like paul ryan.



"Can someone like masscon, who knows wtf they are talking about, tell me why Romney doesnt select a VP candidate right now that could just end this thing?"

I don't presume to know wtf I'm talking about, except when it comes to European dynasties, but I think it would look weak, almost desperate.


80. First off, super pacs will have money to spend and I think they could certainly be convinced to spend that on the GOP nominee. 2nd, you miss the fact that someone being selected from a BC has not been tortured by their own party for the past 12 months with ungodly attack adds. If Romney wins you have people in his own party pointing at reasons they arent going to vote for him. Obviously the same thing for Santorum. But if we unite around someone that hasnt been attacked daily for the last year we get a breath of fresh air and a candidate that romney/santorum/newt can all unite behind....even if they are pissed off behind closed doors.

Reginald from texas

romney and rec are polar opposites when it comes to the economic approach. no way they could be on the same ticket. they have such different policies.



"I didn’t know you presumed to speak for an entire movement."

I don't. Can you point to any poll that suggests any conservatives vote the issue of contraception.

"The larger point remains as you well know."

That contraception is just a straw man?


But if we unite around someone that hasnt been attacked daily for the last year we get a breath of fresh air and a candidate that romney/santorum/newt can all unite behind….even if they are pissed off behind closed doors.

"Most undemocratic, illegitimate nominee since Hubert Humphrey 1968" is more powerful reason for Romney supporters to stay home than any reason you might come up with.



We will all unite behind our nominee. Just look at the polls against Obama. Romney consistently does well, and that's despite the harsh campaigning that has defined the primary. McCain was HATED by the base 4 years ago and when it was over, his haters began uniting and the only reason he lost to Obama was because of independents (his Repub turnout was higher than Bush's in 2004).

There is no chance our nominee is someone from outside this race. None. Zero.

So it's Mitt, and let's end this thing and focus on Obama. There's NO POINT in supporting someone else because NO ONE ELSE can win the nomination, admittedly, until August 30th. Doomsday scenario.


90....unfortunately for me, I ran the numbers and you are right about no one being able to get it but Mitt....but id still like to see Mitt vs Santorum heads up and let it play out. I'm not changing my view on a BC. Its my favorite option.



Exactly. The Habsburgs failed and died, while the Hohenzollerns won the Super Bowl.



You know how WWI ended, right?


NOSTRADAMUS!!!!! Love it! Your'e the best! (in spite of what Huckarubio says. . . .)

So Matt - you think ALL the candidates are bad. . . . okay, got it now. You're' just here to be a spoilsport. Okay. Well have at it. Some of us are hoping to get the best person AVAILABLE voted in come November.

Off to slay dragons; party on my favorite political peeps!



That's fine, I respect your opinion. I just think that sometimes one's "favorite" option isn't always the pragmatic one.


In the South, Newt helps Romney. It splits up the NotMormon vote and since there's more than one NotMormon candidate with Newt and Rick, there's no consolidation. Support between Santorum and Gingrich is not really going to move to Romney.

But at this point in the game in other states where voters think outside that one issue, Newt hurts Romney because it's simply a math game and ANY increase of delegates totals for Romney helps Romney reach 1144. Since there's no realistic way for Santorum to surpass Romney in delegates or get to 1144, it's all about Romney capturing as many delegates as possible, not about denying Rick delegates. Even if just 10% of Newt's support goes to Romney and the rest goes to Santorum, it still helps Romney.

The one caveat would be some of the closer WTA states, but the rest of those look solid Romney, I doubt Santorum puts any resources into them.

The other issue to consider is psychological. Newt staying may deny Romney 1144, but it will also mean that Santorum has DRASTICALLY less delegates and votes than Romney going into the Convention. It's going to be VERY difficult for Santorum to make his case to be the nominee when he comes in with half the delegates and votes that Romney has.


81 "A well-managed brokered convention would attract viewers and would provide a great platform."

Well-manged by whom? The establishment?



You know that Germany is the 4th largest economy in the world, right?

You know that Austria is a tiny, land-locked country, right?


I think hoping that brokered convention, that would produce the most undemocratic nomination since Hubert Humphrey 1968, and considering that Humphrey didn't win the general election, hoping that this nominee would become the most undemocratic nominee to win general election since FDR, when they didn't have any primaries, just convention, I don't see how anybody who is truly conservative can think that trying this is a good idea. This kind of idea is either extremely radical or reactionary.

Joe (R42012 Groupie, Joe For Mitch)

RE: Santorum as Veep

* Could Santorum cause hay if he is not taken seriously as Veep. Definitely.

* IMHO, Romney could call and raise this bluff by picking Mike Huckabee as Veep.

* Huckabee wouldnt even be in my top ten for Veeps but since politics is not about defining the winning answer but defining the question itself....its seems the question is does Romney pick a Veep without regard to the base or with regard to the base?

* Had Romney won MS regardless of AL he could put Santorum's base behind him for the veep selection process. Santorum's ability to deny Romney the kill-shot means Romney negotiating room to avoid Santorum's base is weakened

* Bob McDonnell provides MSM a week's worth of stories turning off women (The thesis thing, the gay rights thing, the contraception thing) in a real and tangible way

* Mike Huckabee kills Santorum's negotiating power, address Santorum's base, balances ticket geographiclly/ideologiclly/class, and provides the convention with a united front

Romney's ascension to nominee is fairly well assured, but his inability to seal it sooner rather than later provides opponents with a seat at the table in the Veep decision.



"Austria" is more than just Austria. It is Austria, Hungary, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Southern Poland, most of Rumania, Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia, and the northeast corner of Italy.

Were it not for the hellfire that Nazi Prussia brought down on the region, and the communism that came in its wake, things would be much different now.


"Well-manged by whom? The establishment?"

I assume the RNC would appoint an unaligned chairperson.


#27 -



101. The Prussians were the ones who most opposed Hitler. In fact, much of Hitler's rhetoric was raging against the old rulers.

Almost all of the nations that have arisen in Austria-Hungary's wake have been weak, poor, land-locked, and communist/heavily socialist.


If the stekes of the election weren't so vital, I would almost hope for a brokered convention, if only for the visual of Santorum and Gingrich, after running vehemently against the "establishment" for a year with fire-breathing rhetoric, going hat in hand begging the establishment to pick them over the guy who got way more votes from...the people.



If this primary is only about “Stop Romney”, the Republican party is doomed. Either he will be the nominee or someone not currently in the race will be the nominee. Neither Santorum nor Gingrich will come out victor at a broken convention. Romney could because the people at the convention can see he has the organization, the skills, the money, and the broader based support needed to defeat Obama in Nov. But if it isn’t Romney, it is going to be another power name that has been dropped in the past few months – but not likely Palin.

The most cogent post on this entire thread.

The sad fact that that the StopMitt movement which characterizes this primary is almost entirely a StopTheMormon movement. That's how Santy ended up with IA; the IA pastors went nuts that a Mormon was going to win IA. And then you have all the national pastors meeting at the Houston ranch. Why? To StopTheMormon. And who do they come up with after seven ballots or something? The very inferior candidate Santorum, who has nothing actually going for him as a real POTUS except he does appeal to down home folks and is either Mitt the Mormon nor Nutty Newt.

Santy and Newty's determination to "take this all the way to the convention" (even tho neither of them will EVER be our candidate no matter what--nobody in the GOP is going to allow THAT), tells you everything you need to know about the character of these two and the lame brain people who continue to support them.


102. "I assume the RNC would appoint an unaligned chairperson."

You do know what they say about "assume", right?


#105: Ha! So true. Except the stakes are so dang high and that's why I'm getting seriously pissed at their cavalier and despicable antics--which prove that neither should ever be POTUS. What a couple of self-serving egomaniacs.

They need to be defeated and never, ever, ever play a role in GOP politics in the future. Politics doesn't build character; politics reveals character. What has been revealed is dang ugly.


Hey Adam, if Santorum is the real conservative alternative, why is he only competitive against Romney in open primaries? And why does Romney clean house in closed primaries?

Conservative Independent

Larry Sabato has an issue of his Crystal Ball today. He said that Romney has an 80% chance of getting the nomination. Romney was not supposed to be Illinois until Monday but has put in an extra day this Friday in Elmhurst. He is having a rally with Chris Christie at noon on Friday. He is also going to be in a Pancake House at 6:30 am on Friday in Rosemont. So far, all Romney's ads in Illinois have been about budget and policy issues. My husband liked the one about Romney helping to find that girl. Romney's team has been making phone calls in Illinois for at least a month which is a good thing for all the early and absentee voters. Santorum will most likely get a lot of votes downstate and there is not a whole lot Romney can do about that. Santy is starting out with a 12 delegate deficit in Illinois.


Gallup: Romney up by two!! Go Mitt!! Santy remains the same! Newt dropped one!

Conservative Independent

#108 KG as usual you are correct. The idea of a Romney-Santy ticket makes me nauseous. It's a poison ticket the same way Palin's name on last election's ticket was. Fiscal conservatives shudder at the thought of Santy and I have strong feeling that a lot of Indies and moderate Republicans and Democrats are fiscal conservatives.


#102: You are completely delusional, as usual. Santorum, Gingrich, Palin, and Limbaugh are the GOP's worst nightmare. And Obama's wet dream.

Actually it is Santorum, Gingrich, Palin and Limbaugh low information supporters who are the GOP's worst nightmare.

Here are Mitt's supporters, besides a million more actual primary voters: Mark DeMoss, Ann Coulter, ROBERT BORK, Darrell Issa, JOHN BOLTON, Jan Brewer, Jon Huntsman, Tim Pawlenty, Rob Portman, Orrin Hatch, Mike Lee, Jason Chaffetz, Kelly Ayotte, Nikki Hayley, Pam Bondi, Bob McConnell, Christine O'Donnell, the Sekulows, John Sununu, John Thune, Chris Chrstie, Donald Trump, GHWB and Barbara, Jeff Flake, Sheriff Babeu, Jeff Sessions, Rick Snyder, the Holy See Ambassadors, John McCain, Pete Wilon, Mark Kirk, Cathy McMorris Rodgers, John Ashcroft, Bill Haslam, Dan Quayle, Lisa Murkowski, Eric Cantor, Sen. Coburn, Marsha Blackburn, Lamar Alexander, Jon Voit, Michael Medved, Geo. Pataki, Dierdre Imus, Bernard McGuirk, Roy Blunt, Aaron Schock, Bob Dole, Phil Bryant, Ted Nugent, Kid Rock and Jeff Foxworthy. And many others in the GOP, including by implication Marco Rubio.

The notion that the GOP is going to deny Mitt in favor of Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dumb when the people have spoken and given more votes to Mitt is absolutely insane.

Conservative Independent

Romney media outreach: Am hearing Romney just sat down with Scott Pelley and 60 Minutes today 11 minutes ago · reply · retweet · favorite Alex BurnsPOLITICO - Reporter (DC)

Conservative Independent

Scott Rasmussen ? @RasmussenPoll

Daily Tracking: #Romney: 47%, #Obama: 45%... Obama: 46%, #Santorum: 45%...

Conservative Independent

Larry Sabato ? @LarrySabato

TODAY'S CRYSTAL BALL: Romney's down, right? Not really. CB team projects Mitt to win 70% of delegates thru April.

I trust Sabato's projections


#114: Apparently Mitt was on FOX this a.m. and will be on Hannity tonight. It will be refreshing to see someone (anyone) besides the ubiquitous Newtorum blathering away, speaking lies and nonsense.

Now that people are sick to death of seeing Newtorum, Mitt's making his move.

IMO Mitt was great on Megan Kelly yesterday: Head and shoulders above his whiny, negative, weasley "competitors." And to think I started out kind of liking those guys.

Conservative Independent

Romney is talking about what he would do to try to balance the out of control federal budget.

This is Saint Santy's headline today

‘Vigorous’ Santorum crackdown may catch Internet porn viewers with pants down

Read more:


119. You beat me to it.

Richard Sanctimonious vows to stop internet porn.

Hey, let's not talk about Obama or the economy, let's talk internet porn.

What a loser.


27# MWS stop with the empty accusations. It is the cheapest and weakest technique to call you opponets names or say that their behavior is ???? and then set it up so if they respond you can simply say "See "I told you so"

I am proud to be a supporter of Romney and just because many of us dont respond to your name calling does not mean we are not able to. I guess we are like Romney in that way. We try to be gentle but when we do decide to volley back attacks we can do it better than those who originally served it.

I've noticed many times when an anti-Romney attack is volleyed back with precision that the cry is "See how mean, judgemental or angry they are."

For the most part I have just been here for 3 years and watched the "Antis" come and go. Now I just count up the delegates along the way.


"I do it for us Rombots who endure all the arrows." Huh???


Santorum clearly needs to drop out of politics and go work for Dobson and Focus on the Family.


123 - Welcome back K.G.!!!!



This is why Santorum will, eventually, fade out.

He goes off-topic about perhaps admirable, but so-not-priority issues all the freakin' time. Steady Mitt will continue to garner support from more-worldly conservatives, those of us who realize the extreme so-con but fiscally liberal Sainty is not the answer.

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