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After Supertuesday, A Time For Choosing.

The numbers don't stack up: Newt Gingrich.

At this point, it seems to me the logic of the electoral contest does not leave much time for hesitation.

We know this year the distribution of the delegates is of a more “proportional” nature. This allows candidates who considers themselves credible to keep their hopes for longer. Look at Gingrich winning in Georgia (playing home, granted), when with the winner-take-old system he would probably have finished the money a long time ago. I also note Romney has won six of the ten Supertuesday races and still is if not nowhere – which would be ungenerous – rather far away from imposing his presence and charisma – if any – as the Republican candidate. The way he continues to outrageously outspend his opponents for a summa summarum rather disappointing return (a win of around 1% in Ohio; really?) goes to show an awful lot of Republicans just don’t like Romney and they might vote for him – obtorto collo – only for the sake of getting rid of Adolf Hussein.

I had said in the past that the new proportional system doesn’t make it so decisive to have a quick decision between Gingrich and Santorum, as they continued to accumulate delegates who wold unavoidably vote for the one of them who remained. This was when Santorum and Gingrich together had around the same delegates – acouple more, in fact – than Romney alone.

This does not seem to be the case anymore, though. Last time I looked, Romney had 380 delegates and Gingrich/Santorum together less than 200. Basically, this means the clock is ticking fast and if they go on this way, by staying in the race Gingrich will only manage to destroy Santorum’s hopes of winning the nomination, without even a hope of being picked up as vice president because he and Romney are not exactly best friends, and Romney would probably prefer to pick up Santorum to give himself a conservative virginity.

Romney must, then, now hope Gingrich stays in the race as long as he can, because this is the only way he can avoid the emergence of a candidate the Republican people can really perceive as Republican, and as the alternative to him. It seems to me the time for choosing has now come, and Gingrich should very seriously consider quitting and supporting Santorum, sharpish. It is true he might do better in places like Alabama and Mississippi, but again Santorum could do better than him anyway. Santorum appears to be just better at mobilising the clearly conservative electorate, whilst the more moderate Gingrich cannot profit from his more expendable profile to take away many votes from Romney. If you are distant third after now many races, and could only win in your own state on Supertuesday, how realistic are your chances?

Romney won Ohio for around 1%, but in Ohio Gingrich got around 15%. In Alaska, Santorum lost for only 3 percentage point, and Gingrich got 14%.

What does this tell us?

I still think Gingrich would have better cards than Santorum in November but hey: he will not make it to November, one way or the other.

The time for skirmishes is coming to an end. I think it is now time for Gingrich to admit Santorum has the better cards (or alternatively: that he can damage Romney’s chances more if he quits the race) and supports Santorum.


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