Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Romney fails to Deliver the Crucial Blow in the South

The Republican presidential primaries are far from over. Admittedly, Rick Santorum was playing some “away games” in the conservative south and mid-west of America. He opted, and could afford to let the contest in Kansas go by. There, the conservatives picked Santorum overwhelmingly over Gingrich. This gave the former Pennsylvania Senator a huge win there.

In the Southern states of Alabama and Mississippi, it was a three way battle. Admittedly, Romney would have been soundly defeated if there was only one conservative against him. Gingrich, who is stronger in the South did well by coming second, narrowly edging past the moderate Romney while, Santorum recorded slim victories.

This has been a considerable setback to the former Massachusetts governor who is leading the Republican race. The fact that the conservatives still believe in Santorum’s ability to defeat Romney is an important aspect seen in this outcome. The conservatives are still reluctant to accept defeat. However, they will still have to long way to go, as there were a considerable number of delegates won by Romney even in the two states he lost, Alabama and Mississippi. In Alabama, he won 10 delegates while Santorum and Gingrich ended up with 17 and 12 respectively. In Mississippi, it was much closer with Romney and Gingrich getting 12 delegates and Santorum finishing with 13. Meanwhile, Romney has won convincingly in the caucuses in Hawaii. Once again this is an indication of the moderate-conservative contest within the party.

Santorum, speaking in Louisiana, which is the next Southern state to hold its primary declared, "the time is now for the conservatives to pull together". The results show that while Romney can conserve his energy and funds by letting go some contests, as he chose to do in Kansas, his challengers will have to fight for every inch to be in a position to ultimately derail him from the contest. To do that, the conservatives will have to pull together at once.

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