Romney Wins??

It will be interesting to see how the press covers Romney’s win in Michigan last night.

An article on Yahoo Calls it an important win.

Meanwhile, Dan Balz has a more measured take on the win. He questions whether a frontrunner should really have such a hard time winning a state where a grew up, where his dad was governor and where he won 4 years ago. A fair question in my opinion.

On a slightly more wonkish note, Romney’s Michigan win netted him only 14 delegates while Santorum got 12. This is because Michigan broke GOP rules by moving their primary up a week and lost a few delegates and also because the race was very close.

It will be interesting to see if Romney can turn the two wins into some real momentum heading into Super Tuesday and whether Santorum can successfully counter the perception that Romney had two big wins on Tuesday. Then again momentum may be red herring if the real reason for Romney’s wins were that he has more money and is better organized. Scott, care to opine?

24 Responses

  1. Democrats (especially liberals opposed to the tea party) accounted for 9% of the vote in MI and broke 53 to 17 for Santorum. The Romney campaign estimates it cost him roughly 3% of the vote.

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    • I did see that 1 in 10 voters were Democrats. Is everyone else assuming they voted for Santorum because they think he would be easier to beat than Romney?

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      • ashot:

        Is everyone else assuming they voted for Santorum because they think he would be easier to beat than Romney?

        No. They could easily be disillusioned with Obama and would like a preferred alternative come November.

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        • They could easily be disillusioned with Obama and would like a preferred alternative come November.

          It just seems odd to me that a disillusioned liberal would pick the more socially conservative of the two candidates.

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        • Just in case you thought the Rs were hard on each other in MI, here is Pravda on our SecState:

          Pravda: Hillary Clinton ‘despicable’
          By Al Kamen

          U.S.-Russian relations may have truly hit bottom. A vicious, over-the-top newspaper column Sunday blasted Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for saying Russian and Chinese vetoes of an Arab League-backed peace plan for Syria were “despicable.”

          The column in Pravda — formerly a commie house organ and now apparently in a similar mode for that party — was headlined “Despicable is Hillary Clinton.”

          “She started out four years ago as a charming secretary of state,” it began, “the smile on the snout to wipe out the snarl of her predecessor, Condoleezza Rice.”

          Then: “But now, she appears on camera butch, a trucker-type probably complete with tattoos, insolent, inconsequential and incompent. We now understand Bill.”

          The screed slides, with increasing incoherence, downhill from there, rehashing her 2008 campaign embellishment of her landing in Bosnia “under fire,” and then smacking her for blowing a “very easy” shot at the presidency. “Did she pull it off? No she didn’t.”

          Russia and China only “exercised their right to block NATO’s evil desire to make another Libya out of Syria,” the column says. That would be bad? At least the Libyan government, as opposed to Russian ally Syria, is not engaged in a full-scale bombardment of women and children, last time we checked.

          But Clinton’s not the only one who’s “despicable.” We quickly get to the ”Gulf Royals, unelected, but in power,” and not a word of protest from the administration even though the regimes “have carried out the most draconian measures against their citizens.” (As opposed to a full-scale bombardment of women and children, see above.)

          The ravings pivot further to “despicable is the United States of America” and “torture flights,” Guantanamo, Abu Ghraib, Lynndie England and “arm[ing] terrorists overseas, as was the case in Libya and as is the case in Syria.” (Full-scale bombardment of women and children, see above.)

          “Despicable then. . . is Hillary R. Clinton and the hellhole that she represents,” the column concludes, noting that Russia and China were not ”involved” in any of those “human rights violations” he mentioned.

          Of course there was Hungary, Poland, Chechnya, Tibet, Tiananmen Square . . . but we digress.

          Team Clinton was furious with the column, we hear. In truth, “despicable” was a most undiplomatic term. Probably better to say “reprehensible.”

          What happened to U.S.-Russia “re-set” button? Oh yeah, ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul has it — but the Russians are barely acknowledging his presence.

          By Al Kamen | 12:26 PM ET, 02/28/2012

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        • ashot:

          It just seems odd to me that a disillusioned liberal would pick the more socially conservative of the two candidates.

          Agreed. I wasn’t paying attention. I was thinking about the number of Dem voters who crossed over, but didn’t consider the split between the candidates.

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  2. OT: ICYMI, Sen. Snowe is not seeking re-election. and apparently her staff was in dark

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  3. Romney carried the ‘Catholic’ vote over Santorum 43-37 in Michigan, roughly paralleling the overall vote. Pandering to them on social issues isn’t going to be much of a wedge.

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  4. Santorum is on the Huckabee trajectory. He can stay in the race & be a pest to Romney, but he doesn’t have a path to the nomination.

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  5. What I love about the coverage is I don’t even know how many delegates Romney and Santorum each picked up in Michigan.

    Three different sources show three different sets of figures.
    Green Papers: 15-13 Romney over Santorum
    WaPo: 11 each
    This post: 14-12 Romney over Santorum

    Does anyone happen to know how AZ managed to remain winner-take-all? Party rules clearly say that any state jumping the gun on its primary (only 4 were to have been held prior to March 1 and AZ wasn’t among them) must award delegates proportionally.

    Super Tuesday’s primaries are all proportional or largely proportional. The last I looked Santorum was leading in OH, OK, and TN; Romney in VA; Gingrich in GA. Don’t know about the other states. I assume MA is leaning toward Romney.

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    • Three different sources show three different sets of figures.
      Green Papers: 15-13 Romney over Santorum
      WaPo: 11 each
      This post: 14-12 Romney over Santorum

      I had thought they split them, but then I read the article on the Detroit Free Press so I went with what they posted.

      I have no idea how Arizona pulled off what they did.

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  6. It just seems odd to me that a disillusioned liberal would pick the more socially conservative of the two candidates.

    It was mostly mischief-making by voting for the NotRomney.

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  7. Does anyone happen to know how AZ managed to remain winner-take-all? Party rules clearly say that any state jumping the gun on its primary (only 4 were to have been held prior to March 1 and AZ wasn’t among them) must award delegates proportionally.

    Florida wasn’t proportional either. It is something that can be challenged by the candidates, but basically the state GOPs are challenging the RNC to make them do change to proportional.

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  8. MI delegates are allocated by congressional district, plus the overall winner gets 2 more for the state. NPR said they split the CDs, meaning 14 each; plus 2 for Romney for winning the state; should be 16-14.

    aha, but the detroit news says they’ve only received 11 each so far; perhaps they’re waiting on official results:

    “in Michigan, the winner in each of the state’s 14 congressional districts gets two delegates, and two more delegates go to the candidate who takes the most votes statewide, making up a pot of 30. By 8:30 a.m. Wednesday, Romney and Santorum each had been awarded 11 delegates.”

    http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20120229/POLITICS01/202290390/Romney-Santorum-splitting-Michigan-s-share-delegates?odyssey=tab%7Ctopnews%7Ctext%7CFRONTPAGE

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    • in Michigan, the winner in each of the state’s 14 congressional districts gets two delegates, and two more delegates go to the candidate who takes the most votes statewide, making up a pot of 30

      But Michigan lost a couple of delegates for having the primary early, correct? Why is this so confusing and why are there so many different nubers being reported?

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  9. “Florida wasn’t proportional either. It is something that can be challenged by the candidates, but basically the state GOPs are challenging the RNC to make them do change to proportional.”

    Again from NPR this AM; it will be decided at the convention; if at all. The argument is that if Romney has a comfortable lead, the delegates won’t matter. If its close, or he doesn’t have a majority, other candidates might challenge the AZ delegate allocation for being too early.

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  10. ashot, no reason not to go with the Detroit Free Press figures. Based on what I know about the intricacies of GOP delegate allocation there’s truth in all of the figures I read this morning. In any event, the delegate split looks fairly even.

    As to winner-take-all, I think Gingrich has challenged the FL delegate allocation. As I recall, the FL Republican in charge of such matters more or less told Gingrich “KMA.” So Mike is probably on to something there.

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  11. “why are there so many different nubers being reported?”

    good question. detroit news & wapo are likely reporting only official numbers. How they get an odd number is unknown; given that delegates are allegedly awarded at 2 per CD.

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  12. Again from NPR this AM; it will be decided at the convention; if at all.

    Interesting. In my view, if it were decided earlier (say, now) it could possibly shift momentum away from Romney. Looks like the RNC both defers to the states and tacitly supports Romney with that move.

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  13. The number of delegates by state is a complex formula made up of a fixed number of delegates per congressional district, at large delegates, party delegates, and bonus delegates (the redder the state, the more bonus candidates awarded).

    MI originally had 42 ‘congressional district’ delegates (3 per CD), 10 at large delegates, 3 party delegates, and 4 bonus delegates, totaling 59. However, it took the 50% penalty by holding its primary before March 1, hence the 30 that were in play yesterday.

    I can’t find the link, but here’s the gist from the latest I read. There are two CDs whose counts are not yet final. As of lunchtime on the east coast, Romney and Santorum each had 13 of the 30 to be awarded. The last 4 are still up in the air, 2 delegates for each of the remaining districts. Santorum allegedly has narrow leads in both.

    So it’s possible Romney will win the popular vote, but Santorum the delegate race.

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  14. If delegates are awarded in increments of 2, how can either candidate have an odd number of delegates?

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  15. bsimon, delegates aren’t awarded in increments of two. It looks that way in the MI example, I see that.

    The formula for awarding delegates is complicated and convoluted. Overly so, IMO.

    Stop by here for a glimpse.
    http://www.thegreenpapers.com/P12/R-Alloc.phtml

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  16. um, yeah. a 30 second look at that & I’ll accept this clarification: “delegates aren’t awarded in increments of two.”

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  17. bsimon, good move.

    The delegate formulas were developed by a team of mathematical sadists.

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