Is Mitt Romney the Next Republican Presidential Candidate?
January 11, 2012
Topics: 2012 Presidential Election;
Mitt Romney won yesterday's Republican Presidential primary election in New Hampshire by a wide margin. It appears that the nomination is solidly within his grasp, with no strong competitors. After barely winning Iowa last week, by the smallest margin in history, he needed a strong showing in New Hampshire in order to strengthen his lead. Yesterday's victory, combined with Rick Santorum's poor showing, puts him in a favorable position to win the Republican nomination.
In Iowa, Rick Santorum stole much of Romney's momentum by placing a close second. At the time, some polls showed Santorum with a decent chance at placing well in New Hampshire too. If he had done well yesterday, the race could still be close, but he placed fifth, with only 9% of the vote. Not only that, but Romney is also leading in the polls in South Carolina, the next primary state. With wins in the first two states, he is already in a very good position. With a win in South Carolina, he will be poised to clinch the nomination by mid February without any significant competition.
At this point, barring a sudden and unexpected surge, candidates Rick Perry, Jon Huntsman, and Newt Gingrich are extremely unlikely to win the nomination. Between them, only Huntsman has placed in the top three in Iowa or New Hampshire. Perry has staked his entire campaign on South Carolina, and is not doing well in the polls there. If he loses there, he will probably quit the campaign altogether. The same could be said of Newt Gingrich as well. Huntsman is probably in an even worse position, despite placing third yesterday in New Hampshire. He did not campaign in Iowa at all, and placed last. He has also ignored South Carolina, and polls have him getting less than 1% of the vote there. His entire campaign was based on winning New Hampshire, which he failed to do.
Only Santorum and Ron Paul remain within long striking distance of Romney at this point. Santorum's close second in Iowa gave him a boost, and he is doing well in South Carolina's polls. Ron Paul placed third in Iowa and second in New Hampshire, demonstrating that he has widespread support in both states, though not quite as much as Romney in either. He is also ranking well in South Carolina, and will probably rank in the top three again. However, neither Santorum nor Paul have a campaign organization as strong as Romney, and both of them are already well behind him.
Do you like Mitt Romney? Do you agree with the author's assessment that he will be the Republican winner? Would you support him against President Obama in the general election? Is there a third party that you prefer? Are you already sick of politics? Leave a comment with your opinion.