I’m sick and tired of reading posters on conservative websites and hearing from contributors on the cable news channels – including Fox News – pushing the trope that the Republican primary is pretty much over. As they see it, Mitt Romney is the winner and should be declared as such and any further primary elections should be suspended.
As usual, talk show host and political pundit Rush Limbaugh framed this issue in the proper perspective during yesterday’s radio broadcast:
…Oh, no, no, no. It’s not time to put a stop to it, anoint anybody and say that we’re done. Newt’s not getting out. He’s gonna stay in through Super Tuesday. That’s where he’s got all of his money banked. This thing could go on as far as May. Santorum’s not going anywhere. Santorum doesn’t have a lot of money even now. Romney outspent Santorum six to one in Michigan. I mean just some facts about Michigan. Romney won by nine points in 2008. He won by three points last night but got more votes last night than he did in 2008. But the percentage of his victory in 2008 was nine. It was three points last night. Santorum — and this is preliminary, I’ve gotta double-check this all, but this is what I have now — Santorum won 57 out of 83 counties.
As of now, Santorum, who lost the popular vote, won because of the way delegates are apportioned. Seven of the 14 congressional districts, Romney has won six. So that’s seven and six, a total 13 out of 14. One is still too close to call. Now, according to what I’m told, the 28 delegates, of those 28 delegates in Michigan, Santorum will either win 14 or 15, something like that, the way things get apportioned because of the number of delegates and counties, districts, so forth and he won in Michigan. So it’s not winner-take-all. So when you ask me if I should pronounce it over, it’s not my job to do that anyway.
I think the weakness that Romney has is not the conservatives won’t show up in November. They will. They want Obama out, and that will override everything. The problem is with the Reagan Democrats, the white working class that Obama lost in 2008 by I think about eight or ten points. You’ve gotta win that by 20 points, and you can do that. Some of the Republican candidates in theory could do that. Romney is weak with that segment. He knows it. That’s why he tries to do the everything and he keeps tripping over himself. If he wins that constituency, he wins the presidency, but that’s where he’s gotta work.He is just not all that good a candidate. So here are the numbers: Romney won by nine in 2008; he won 41-38 or three points last night.
Santorum won 57 out of 83 counties. That’s an incredible percentage, and it reminds me of the map of the United States, red and blue by county, when you look at that after a presidential race. The whole country is red (signifying Republican) except LA, San Francisco, Seattle, Miami, Washington, New York, Boston, Chicago and Detroit. The Republicans win 80% of America’s counties and lose the White House. Santorum won 57 out of 83 counties. And, as of now, Santorum, while losing the popular vote, has won seven of the 14 congressional districts; Romney won six; there’s still one at least right now (earlier this morning it was one) still too close to call. This means that, of those 28 delegates, Santorum will either win 14 (if the last district goes to Romney) and 16 if Santorum wins the last district.
So the delegate count from those 28 will be either a 14-14 tie or 16-12 Santorum.
The manner in which Michigan was divided between the two candidates is a metaphor for the political blood bath currently taking place in the GOP between conservatives and moderates.
This whole primary battle reminds me of Aesop’s Fable “The Country Mouse and the City Mouse:”
There once was a mouse who liked his country house until his cousin came for a visit.
“In the city where I live,” his cousin said, “we dine on cheese and fish and bread. Each night my dinner is brought to me. I eat whatever I choose. While you, country cousin, work your paws to the bone for humble crumbs in this humble home. I’m used to finery. To each his own, I see!”
Upon hearing this, the country mouse looked again at his plain brown house. Suddenly he wasn’t satisfied anymore. “Why should I hunt and scrape for food to store?” he said. “Cousin, I’m coming to the city with you!”
Off they went into the fine town house of the plump and prosperous city mouse.
“Shhh! The people are in the parlor,” the city mouse said. “Let’s sneak into the kitchen for some cheese and bread.”
The city mouse gave his wide-eyed country cousin a grand tour of the leftover food on the table. “It’s the easy life,” the city mouse said, and he smiled as he bit into a piece of bread.
Just as they were both about to bite into a chunk of cheese, in came the CAT!
“Run! Run!” said the city mouse. “The cat’s in the house!”
Just as the country mouse scampered for his life out of the window, he said, “Cousin, I’m going back to the country! You never told me that a CAT lives here! Thank you, but I’ll take my humble crumbs in comfort over all of your finery with fear!”
Conservatives like me can identify with the Country Mouse.
We would rather hold on to our ethics and values, than compromise and elect a left-leaning moderate who will “reach across the aisle” to shake hands with Liberals. By electing a conservative candidate, we won’t have to spend time worrying about the knifes that the Liberals are holding behind their backs with the other hand.