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Thursday, February 02, 2012

Republican Delegate Standings, February Polling

(Note: if you've arrived here via a google search, the standings are probably out of date. Click here for the latest coverage.)
Yesterday, I relayed the competing estimates of each candidate's delegates in the GOP Primary. The CNN Standings, MSNBC Standings, and Real Clear Politics Standings can't seem to agree on their projections. I wrote about why here.

Factoring in each of their projections gives us the following general GOP Primary Standings (represented in ranges):
1. Romney: 65-84
2. Gingrich: 23-27
3/4. Santorum: 6-11
3/4. Paul: 3-10

And I said yesterday, important numbers to keep in mind:
Total possible delegates: 2286
Number needed for majority: 1144

Where do they go from here? I'm glad you asked.

Below are the February contests and their delegate totals. (I'll number them in chronological order. So, Iowa was 1, New Hampshire was 2, South Carolina was 3, and Florida was 4.) It's worth noting that there are 128 total delegates up for grabs in February. The total doled out in January? Only 115. Just like the three NonRoms keep reminding us, there's a long way to go.

I looked for polls in each of these states, but they were all too outdated. All of them were run before Florida, and some before Iowa. (I have to believe polls are in the field as I write this, though, so stay tuned.) Still, this schedule will help set the stage for the next few weeks, and I'll be sure to reference it in the posts still to come. Therefore, I'll simply post the date of the last unreliable poll underneath each one; just don't take much stock in them. I'll also add a thought or two on each of the contests, though they'll get more attention as they draw closer.

Saturday, February 4
5. Nevada Caucus--28 delegates
Last poll: Las Vegas Review-Journal, 12/12-12/20
1. Romney--33 (up 4)
2. Gingrich--29
3. Paul--13
4. Santorum--3

Note on Nevada Caucus: More on this tomorrow in the Nevada Caucus Preview.

Saturday, February 4 to Saturday, February 11
6. Maine Caucus--24 delegates
Last poll: Public Policy Polling, 10/28-10/31
1. Romney--24 (up 6)
2. Gingrich--18
3. Paul--4
4. Santorum--2

Note on Maine Caucus: Why the range of dates? Maine leaves it up to their municipalities to determine when they'll hold their caucus between February 4 and February 11. Kind of cool. Also, this might be Ron Paul's best chance to win a state, so that's always exciting.

Tuesday, February 7
T7. Colorado Caucus--36 delegates
Last poll: PPP, 12/1-12/4
1. Gingrich--37 (up 19)
2. Romney--18
3. Paul--6
4. Santorum--4

Note on Colorado Caucus: Rick Santorum is counting on Colorado to restore his campaign's legitimacy. Yesterday, he drove home his points against Gingrich in his attempt to become the anti-Romney candidate. The poll above--where Santorum is far back with 4 points--means nothing. Santorum barely registered anywhere before his meteoric rise at the turn of the year before Iowa. If Paul wins Maine and Santorum shows well in Colorado (and Gingrich also looks to have some natural popularity in the state), we'll see the Romney campaign lose some steam.

T7. Minnesota Caucus--40 delegates
Last poll: PPP, 1/21-1/22
1. Gingrich--36 (up 18)
2. Romney--18
3. Santorum--17
4. Paul--13

Note on Minnesota Caucus: The weightiest of the February contests, Gingrich had an enormous lead two weeks ago. But that was during his peak--South Carolina weekend. It'll be interesting to see where these numbers end up. If Gingrich maintains his lead, Minnesota could deliver him a nice win. Now I'm starting to think that if Paul, Santorum, and Gingrich could get on the same page between now and Tuesday, and each spend all their time in one state (Paul in Maine, Santorum on Colorado, Gingrich in Minnesota), Romney's delegate count would certainly be curtailed. None of them can actually win a majority of the delegates. Their only hope is ensuring Romney can't, either.

T7. Missouri Primary--0 delegates
Note on Missouri Primary: The February 7 primary will not determine delegates. That will be settled by the March 17 caucuses, when 52 delegates will be awarded.

Saturday, February 18
10. Guam! (Caucus)--9 delegates
I got nothing here.

Tuesday, February 28
T11. Arizona Primary--29 delegates
Last poll
PPP, 11/17-11/20
Gingrich--28 (up 5)

Note on Arizona Primary: Arizona's delegation of 29 is after a 50 percent penalty for holding it too early halved their original total of 58. Its November poll above is meaningles. It's worth noting that this is a winner-take-all state. We might see the candidates cede it to Romney.

T11. Michigan Primary--30
Last poll
EPIC-MRA, 1/25-1/30
Romney--31 (up 5)

Note on Michigan Primary: It's one of several home states for Romney (Michigan, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Utah), but his debate comments about allowing GM to fail might not play well. Still, he should be able to win the state. It's a loooong away, though.

Of the six February states:
Gingrich leads 3 (Colorado, Minnesota, Arizona)
Romney leads 3 (Nevada, Maine, Michigan)
GOP National polls:
Gallup Tracking 1/27 - 1/31
1. Romney--31 (up 5)
2. Gingrich--26
3. Santorum--16
4. Paul--11

NBC News/Wall St. Jrnl, 1/22 - 1/24
1. Gingrich--37 (up 9)
2. Romney--28
3. Santorum--18
4. Paul--12

Rasmussen Reports, 1/23 - 1/23
1. Gingrich--35 (up 7)
2. Romney--28
3. Santorum--16
4. Paul--10

CBS News/NY Times
1. Romney--28 (up 7)
2. Gingrich--21
3. Santoroum--16
4. Paul--15

Real Clear Politics Average of the four:
1. Gingrich--29.8 (up 1)
2. Romney--28.8
3. Santorum--16.5
4. Paul--12.0

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