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Monday, March 05, 2012

Super Tuesday: State-By-State

Super Tuesday Preview: Part II
Part I here.

We're just over 24 hours from our first Super Tuesday results. For Part II of my preview, I'd like to take a close look at each of tomorrow's contests. Here's a list of them and their delegate quantities.

Alaska (caucus)--27
Georgia (primary)--76
Idaho (caucus)--32
Massachusetts (primary)--41
North Dakota (caucus)--28
Ohio (primary)--66
Oklahoma (primary)--43
Tennessee (primary)--58
Vermont (primary)--17
Virginia (primary)--49
=437 combined on Super Tuesday (19.1% of total delegates)

Though this primary is all but decided, the door still stays open for a perfect storm for Santorum. Let’s do some Super Tuesday delegate math, shall we?

If you combine Romney's three "lock" states--Massachusetts, Vermont, and Virginia--that's 107 possible electoral votes. If Santorum can crack 15 percent in Massachusetts and 20 percent in Vermont, he can steal a handful of delegates combined, but Romney's getting the rest. Since Romney will get all 49 of Virginia's delegates through winning every county and a majority of the state vote, Romney will take 100 delegates from those three states.

But then there's the big contests. In descending order of weight:

Gingrich is dominating in Georgia and can expect about 40 to 45 of Georgia's 76. Romney's momentum has raised him to a clear second place, so look for him take home about 20 and Santorum about 10. This would bring Romney up to 125 on the day.

Let's save Ohio, the second largest prize tomorrow, for last. In the third largest state--Tennessee--we see Santorum clinging onto a narrow polling lead for the state's 58 delegates, awarded through district and statewide numbers. Frustrating for Santorum is an enormous surge from Gingrich in the state, and the three big candidates are now in a three-way race in the state. The key for Santorum will be to win the most districts in addition to the popular vote, which would give him a strong majority of the delegates. As of now, however, it's difficult to see him getting that big win. I'd say Santorum edges out Romney and they would each get 20 to 22 delegates, with Gingrich in the teens. Romney's up to 145, Santorum up to 35.

Virginia, as mentioned, is fourth largest; Oklahoma is fifth at 43 delegates. It looks similar to Tennessee. Santorum narrowly leads Romney, though here Gingrich is a strong but distant third. Pencil Santorum and Romney in for 18 to 20 delegates each, with Gingrich earning a handful and costing Santorum a big win. Now, Romney's up to 160 to 165, Santorum about 50 to 55, and Gingrich up over 50 as well. (Paul has zero, as he’d need to reach 15 percent in these states to earn delegates, and he will not.)

What remains, besides Ohio, are smaller delegations from Alaska, Idaho, and North Dakota. Combined, they're worth 87, but since Paul will be very competitive in each, we can reasonably conclude that no candidate will get more than one-third of those 87. Let's ballpark Romney, Santorum, and Paul at 25 each, with Gingrich at 12. (I suspect Romney and Paul will be a bit higher.) Romney's up to 185, Santorum approaches 80, and Gingrich rides Georgia to be right on Santorum's heals (not counting Ohio). Paul's at 25.

All counted from nine of the ten contests, we've apportioned 371 delegates, with Romney winning about half of those. Remarkably close to half, actually. (It was accidental, I swear!)

All that remains are Ohio's 66. Ohio, you can begin to understand, might be high noon for the Santorum campaign, and the Buckeye State is the subject of Part III later tonight.

Super Tuesday draws nearer!

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

"A strong but distant third?" That sounds like something Romney would say if that's where he landed. Or any other loser, I guess.

(And that's what we have here, when you think about it: Three losers locked in battle.)

IC said...

Zing!

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