Last night we got more results in the presidential primary game. This time it was from Alabama, Mississippi, Hawaii, and American Samoa. Here are those results:
So what’s the takeaway from last night?
Rick Santorum – Santorum certainly needed those wins in Alabama and Mississippi. Even though he took first place, the delegate count is what really matters, and it was essentially a 3-way tie in both of those states. He has admitted what we knew all along – that he needs a brokered convention to win, so his focus going forward needs to be more on getting his supporters through the process of being delegates at the national convention.
Newt Gingrich – Newt had a good showing last night, but since he’s strongest in the South, he really needed to win one, if not both, of Mississippi or Alabama. He also needs a brokered convention to win, but without the momentum of a win where he’s supposed to be strong, don’t expect a win from Gingrich. He’ll not drop out though; he can try to use his influence in the race for a cabinet position if his campaign doesn’t pick up steam whenever people start to realize how awful Santorum is.
Mitt Romney – Mitt sure could have used a couple of wins last night. It was suspected that if he won either Mississippi or Alabama that the race would be all but over. Romney did win Hawaii and American Samoa, but all eyes were really on Alabama and Mississippi. The good side of last night for Romney is that he came out of it with more delegates than Santorum, so even though Santorum had a great night, he still lost ground on Romney.
Ron Paul – Again, Paul did about as well as anyone thought he would, though there was hope for a little better finish in Hawaii. His focus is on getting his supporters to the national convention, so he’ll continue that approach. Any momentum he might pick up from a primary or caucus is great, but he’s running this race much differently than his opponents. We may see some focus on Paul’s approach soon, since Santorum is going to have to shift to Paul’s game if he wants to have a shot at the nomination when the convention comes.
Next in line for the primary process is Missouri on Saturday. They had a non-binding “beauty contest” primary in February, but Saturday is what counts. The delegates to convention will be chosen on Saturday.