Mitt Romney, for those of you who aren’t paying attention is actually doing well as far as his chances in his bid to win the Republican nomination for President. You would not know it from the news coverage, though. As far as the popular vote goes he is the only Republican to get over a million total votes so far. He has received slightly over 41% of the vote in all so far, with his closest challenger being Newt Gingrich with just over 31% of the vote.
If you wanted to show how well Mitt is doing though, you should also have a look at the delegate count at this point. Mitt has over 50% (98 of 194)of the total delegates that have been meted out so far, with his closest challenger Rick Santorum having only 22½% (44 of 194)of the delegates.
Viddy of the day: Romney tops Santorum in CPAC Straw poll
So why is Mitt being seen as struggling? That is fairly simple, no Republican front runner has been able to hold onto front runner status for very long, and Mitt has had it and lost it, only to regain it again. Which is nice, but now that he is seen as losing momentum to Rick Santorum over the last few weeks, the reporting community at large seems to think that Mitt is hearing footsteps, to use NFL vernacular.
Santorum’s poll numbers over the last two weeks over all have been nothing short of impressive. 2 weeks ago on the 28th of January, Newt Gingrich actually had a lead in national polling over Mitt Romney, 31.3 to 27.5%, with the former Pennsylvania senator behind with only 15.8% of the populace behind him.
But behind evangelical populism, strong rhetoric from Santorum against the contraception rule (which the Obama White House has since waived) and millions from a religious super pac have pushed Rick into prominence in the field. His strong conservative values didn’t hurt, either.
The race is now much different as a result.
Newt has fallen into a hole, with his numbers dropping over 10% in the last 2 weeks to 20.4%. And while Mitt has actually added some more voters to his side of the equation, with his rolling average up to 30.6 percent from 27.5%, It is the Santorum groundswell that has gotten most of the attention, and added almost 8 ½% to his numbers over that time span, with his support now sitting at 24.2% of the rolling national average of polling data from all polls taken over that time period.
Far from it being Mitt’s race to lose, even with former Gov. Romney’s tight win in Maine, it is now Rick Santorum who looks to be in the drivers seat, and it is his race to win.
Mitt needs to make some big breaking news, some good news, needs to dominate the news cycle positively in order to break away from Santorum here or else this turns into a real dogfight for him, and he might not be able to win that fight.
So it is a lot of things, as you can see that are making someone who is seemingly doing quite well fall apart before our very eyes.
Pic of the day: Assumption of the Virgin, by Peter Paul Reubens
Solutions nearly always come from the direction you least expect, which means there’s no point trying to look in that direction because it won’t be coming from there.
Douglas Adams, The Salmon of Doubt
Mitt Romney can’t catch a break. On a Saturday, a normally slow news day, the week after the end of the NFL season Mitt has what one would think is the only story that would circulate around the airwaves, his win in the Maine caucus. After a week where he has taken a pounding over his inability to take over and win in 3 states where, until late last week he was winning, he needs the coverage, the national exposure of his win in Maine to bring him some momentum.
Two problems with that.
The first one is the fact that he didn’t win by much. At this point in the proceeding, Mitt has won, but he won by a not very impressive margin, 3% or to put it in perspective he won by a grand total of 194 votes. It isn’t the dead heat that Iowa was, or the big losses of earlier this week, but the man didn’t exactly run away from the field. And so close to his base in Massachusetts, the state he used to govern.
The second one is a fluke. And not a pretty one, but one which will be talked about on all the regular news stations as the lead story. The death of Whitney Houston at 48 years old. I will not speak on entertainment news, as that is not news I am offhand interested in, and not being a fan of the late Mrs. Houston. What I will say is that this poor kids untimely demise will take much headline space away from Mitt on a night when he normally could have expected to be the only news of national import going on.
I’d feel sorry for the guy, but he’s a multimillionaire who put himself in a position to lose, in a position where he needs all the positive exposure he can get. Sucks that Whitney’s dead though. I wasn’t a fan but she did a great job of singing the National Anthem at Super-Bowl XXV, and that is worth a moment of silence.
That’s it from here, America. G’night.