Posted on | March 12, 2012 | 18 Comments
Gingrich really needs to win both states to remain in the race, or split them with Santorum at worst case. If Romney wins in Alabama, he can claim to have won in every part of the country, while Gingrich can’t even claim to have won all of the Southern states that he feels is his natural base.
Ed suggests that the Rick Perry VP trial balloon was an attempt by the Gingrich campaign to boost Newt’s support with “very conservative” voters, many of whom once supported Perry.
Given the relative paucity of polling data, the evident closeness of the race, and the level of volatility, it is very difficult to make any prediction beyond “too close to call.”
We know that late-deciding voters are highly suggestible and subject to bandwagon appeals to vote for the candidate they perceive to be the eventual winner. That factor favors Romney, and if it weren’t for the fact that Santorum is being hit with negative ads from every direction (including the pro-Gingrich “super PAC” radio ads I first heard two weeks ago in Michigan), I’d be tempted to predict a third-place finish for Gingrich in both Mississippi and Alabama.
Because there is no way Newt can actually win the nomination, I’d say a vote for Gingrich is a vote for Romney, except that keeping Newt in the race might, by some unforeseen future turn of events, result in Romney being deprived of a majority of delegates going into the convention. Every delegate Romney doesn’t win — no matter whether the delegate is for Gingrich, Rick Santorum or Ron Paul — increases the possibility of a non-Romney candidate getting the nomination in that political wet dream, the “brokered convention.”
“Brokered convention” is, like “beautiful nymphomaniac,” too much of a fantasy to be believed. Political journalists dream of brokered conventions the way teenage boys dream of smokin’ hot babes who just can’t get enough, but in all honesty, which one are we more likely to encounter in Tampa in August?
Yeah: Tampa’s going to be crawling with sex-crazed hotties, except they’ll all be hookers whose ability to simulate erotic enthusiasm is a requirement of their profession. Nevertheless, there will certainly be GOP convention delegates willing to pay for that kind of fantasy-fulfillment action, although it’s highly improbable the delegates will then be so gracious as to fulfill the “brokered convention” fantasies that excite the press corps.
Michael Steele is just teasing us with this “brokered convention” talk, and I’m resisting it the way Republican primary voters are resisting Mitt Romney: Sure, they would like to believe he’s really conservative, just like a GOP delegate might wish to believe that hooker in Tampa is really hot for him — the fulfillment of his adolescent fantasy — but the motives seem rather suspicious.
However, this is not to say that there is no such thing as a beautiful nymphomaniac. After all, I married one. But I’m not sure that has any relevance to the GOP presidential nomination campaign.
UPDATE: King Shamus fears the fantasy:
The fear of a brokered convention forcing the party to put up a weak candidate against President Obama is too horrible for many GOPers to even contemplate.
Look, Shamus: If you think there’s a chance of the GOP putting up a strong candidate, could you please explain that to Karl Rove? Because Karl keeps going on TV to tell millions of Fox News viewers that Mitt Romney’s got this thing locked up.
The possibility that a brokered convention could result in Republicans nominating a weaker candidate than Romney is something that hadn’t crossed my mind. Now that you mention it, though, I suppose Jon Huntsman might be available . . .
But don’t worry about it, Shamus. All this talk about a “brokered convention” is one of three things:
- Liberals messing with our heads by suggesting that the Republican Party is about to collapse in ruins;
- Mitt Romney’s supporters threatening us with a nightmare scenario if we don’t vote for Mitt; or
- Political reporters talking about their fantasy the way some bloggers talk about Christina Hendricks.
Uh . . . NTTAWWT.