Mitt: Down but Up?

By Conservative Paul Posted in Comments (4) / Email this page » / Leave a comment »

Mitt has lost New Hampshire, now the MSM and invariably some Redstaters are praising McCain as the front runner and claiming Mitt is on the verge of defeat, but lets look at the facts:

  1. Mitt Romney leads the delegate count with 27 over Huck's 20 and McCain's anemic 7.
  2. Mitt Romney has placed first or second in every primary/caucus held so far and is competitive in those to come.
  3. Mitt Romney has virtually unlimited funding compared to other candidates.
  4. The next primary is in Mitt's home state of Michigan.

Expect Mitt to make Michigan his rallying point.  His victory in Michigan will be the turning point for the entire nomination.  Don't listen to the MSM, they are in love with McCain and Huckabee because of there liberalness and entertainment value.  A true conservative will win the nomination or we will most likely end up with a brokered convention, in which case the savior of the GOP will be nominated.  Who is this savior you ask?  I have a pretty good idea but I will save that post for when/if a brokered convention becomes inevitable.

Delegate count is largely irrelevant at this stage since we're talking about such a small percentage of delegates. Momentum and perception are what matter and Mitt has taken another major blow tonight. Mitt is on the verge of defeat, but I'm not ready to say it's over for him yet. Michigan is his last, best chance of turning things around since, as you point out, he has a natural, home field advantage there. If he loses toi McCain and Huckabee in Michigan, it's over. If he comes in second to McCain, it's all but over.

Let me first say the "all but" is merely his silver spoon which he can pawn for campaign $$$$. Without his fortune, Mitt would be out.

Having said that. Let me quickly (and amicably)critique your points.

1. "Mitt Romney leads the delegate count with 27 over Huck's 20 and McCain's anemic 7. "

-------Delegate counts mean little at this stage (see: Rudy's strategy)THis early in the primary its all about momentum and the ability to keep raising money for ads (i believe mitt calls these 'hit pieces')

2. "Mitt Romney has placed first or second in every primary/caucus held so far and is competitive in those to come."

-------This is the perfect time to use the phrase "you get no points for second place" ... you may get delegates, but you also look like a loser...or more importantly NOT a winner.

3. "Mitt Romney has virtually unlimited funding compared to other candidates."

--------This is true...but how much is he willing to risk on what increasingly looks like a losing cause?

4. "The next primary is in Mitt's home state of Michigan. "
---------This just means that there is more pressure to win and in the polls i've seen in michigan, indicate his state of birth isn't pulling ENOUGH weight. If he loses michigan he is not going to win the nomination...sure he could stay in...but IMHO this would just serve to prove the old adage true.........."a fool and his money soon part"

Michigan has many more delagates than Iowa or New Hampshire because it has a much larger population. So, I think the Michigan contest looms very large. McCain won the Michigan primary against George W Bush in 2000 by 8 percentage points (with Alan Keyes getting about 5 percent). So, it could be a very important contest. It's probably not getting as much attention as it deserves.

I Mitt's campaign does depend on a few things:

(1) How much of the Romney portfolio are they willing to spend in a race where the outcome is uncertain. If Romney were in the position of, say, Bush in 2000, where he was heavily favored, he might be willing to spend a significant percentage of his wealth on the race. But if it is iffy, one can presume that he will have some sort of limit to the amount of money he will toss into this race.

(2) How much does Romney eventually lose by in New Hampshire? I don't know if the issue is momentum coming out of New Hampshire so much as a report card. And this relates to point (1) above. If Romney loses by a small margin, say less than 5 percent, he might figure that his chances are better than many realize. If he loses by more than 5 percent, he might figure that the other candidates, especially Huckabee and McCain, have too many advantages over him for him to stage a victory in another state like Michigan, South Carolina or Florida.

(3) What is Romney's internal polling in Michigan telling him right now? If the polls look good for Romney in Michigan, he might look at that state as a good place to stage a 1st place victory.

(4) Does Romney want to spend his own money, not on winning the nomination, but on winning more delagates in a brokered convention? Maybe Romney and his campaign advisors have already concluded what some of us Red Staters have been suspecting for a few days: that if at least 4 of these top 5 candidates are still in the race by February 5th, there will be a brokered convention. If Romney believes this, is it worth it to him to spend more of his own money to get more delagetes? Or would he rather just run the remainder of him campaign as a low budget operation even if this means fewer delagates and 3rd or 4th place showings in future races?

When other candidates underperform expectations, their fundraising dries up and, if they are low on cash, it's hard for them to recover from a setback. Romney, with his personal wealth, can loan his own campaign money even when most political contributors aren't willing to sink any more cash into a campaign that isn't doing a well as expected. This is an advantage for Romney only is he is willing to continue to open his wallet.

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