Behold. 12 noon is the number of delegates Romney must have to win the convention (1144) The second hand is the amount of delegates he has secured thus far (65). As you can see, Romney has not even won five minute's worth of delegates on the Doomsday Countdown, and he may end up with even less than that pending some RNC decisions.
Yes, Florida's results were depressing (Romney 46, Gingrich 32, Santorum 13, Paul 7), but they were also to be expected. Gingrich's bump, as I noted earlier in the week, lasted all of two days in the Sunshine State.
To win Florida, you need money, and Romney had that in droves, a tactic that's not going to win him any general elections, or even most primaries for that matter. David Kuhn over at RCP writes:
Romney has carpet-bombed the early primary states with advertising. In Florida alone, pro-Romney groups outspent pro-Gingrich groups by a nearly 5-to-1 ratio. Some estimate more. Kantar reports Romney and his allies spent $12 million on Florida ads compared to $1.8 million, spent by Gingrich and his allies, as of Sunday. Fox News’ “Special Report” cited a ratio nearer to 3-to-1, $17.8 million compared to $5.4 million. Regardless of the precise figures, Romney is overwhelming Gingrich on the airwaves. He would be lucky to match Obama dollar-for-dollar in a general election.Romney also gained from two weak debate performances from Gingrich, and general wheels falling off the bus (moon colony anyone?)
Romney’s recovery in the GOP race is, however, owed to more than money. Gingrich briefly led in Florida after South Carolina. Yet Romney owned the airwaves then too. Pro-Romney groups aired ads almost 13,000 times on broadcast television across the state compared to about 200 times by pro-Gingrich groups, as of Wednesday, according to the Wesleyan Media Project. But Gingrich was still then in contention.
But some of the numbers regarding demographics are concerning me.
Romney's strongest argument will be that he was able to win with conservatives. Though both candidates are insiders, Newt Gingrich tried to make Romney's support within the party a liability. He tried to turn the race into a battle between the establishment and the grassroots. It was people power versus money power, said Gingrich (whose campaign has been aided by $10 million in donations from Sheldon Adelson). Exit polls suggest that the argument didn't work. Romney won by four percentage points over Gingrich among the 65 percent of voters who say they are supporters of the Tea Party. He won by a similar margin among the 65 percent who call themselves conservatives. Gingrich won those who considered themselves "very conservative" and those who "strongly identify" with the Tea Party.Why are "Tea Partiers" and conservatives voting for Romney. The whole inevitability thing makes me beyond frustrated. Why on earth would you vote for the "inevitable" candidate in a primary. It's a primary! Heck, why would you vote for the "inevitable" candidate in any election? What were these people in Florida thinking? That their vote would go to Obama if they didn't vote for Romney? Again, it's the primary! Vote for the person you like. After we nominate someone you have to hold your nose and vote for them, but before then knock yourself out.
In addition, who says Romney is inevitable? Just look at the Doomsday Countdown (I'll repost it for those of you too lazy to scroll up):
Does that look inevitable to you?
Didn't think so. Heck, I could do wall-sits for the length of Romney's delegate count.
Later today, we'll take a look at the month ahead, which doesn't bode too well for Captain Inevitability.