Why the Florida Republican primary is important, and why Paul and Santorum don’t matter

I know this may sound a bit odd coming from a Texan, especially after the other 49 states’ impression of Texas has now been altered to mean “25 million yahoos just like Rick Perry,” but Florida is totally weird. And that’s precisely why Florida is absolutely key to the Republican nomination for President.

It’s why you see Newt Gingrich talking about building a moon base – it’s to help gain support in space-crazed Florida by pandering to voters there. If Gingrich doubles down and also promises to move to the moon base, he’ll gain even more support among Florida Republicans.

It’s why you see Romney talking about Fidel Castro croaking. Extra credit for anybody who explains in the comments section what Mormons think happens to people after they croak, because Romney is hinting that it could be bad for Fidel.

And it’s why Santorum and Paul matter not one bit.

Florida Republicans apparently love breaking rules. They moved their primary date up in the batting order, which broke one RNC rule. As a result it has cost them half their delegation to the Republican National Convention. So they will presumably get 50 delegates instead of 99 delegates.

But here’s the other rule they broke, and it’s why nobody matters except Romney and Gingrich: it’s a winner-take-all state, not proportional. Nobody gets any delegates unless they come in first. So unless somebody goes to court and wins on that point, one of the leading candidates is about to go way ahead, with more delegates than all the previous states combined.

Ron Paul’s campaign recognizes that, and it’s why he’s not even competing in Florida, instead looking ahead to Nevada, Colorado, and Minnesota. Santorum is the odd man out — too serious a candidate to ignore such a major state, and not serious enough to reap any delegate benefit from it.

Add to that the fact that Florida is a big huge expensive complicated place, with expensive media markets, and you’ll see why the stakes are so high for Gingrich and Romney – it is not without considerable investment and organization that somebody is about to go down big.

Keep and eye on the Florida primary – it’s a big deal.

Comments

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3 Responses to Why the Florida Republican primary is important, and why Paul and Santorum don’t matter

  1. Katy Anders January 26, 2012 at 4:12 pm #

    Go Newt!

    That man is a gift. I could not have picked a better candidate to run against Obama.

    He needs to keep talking extemporaneously into every microphone he sees. Especially AFTER he gets the nomination.

  2. Anonymous January 26, 2012 at 5:35 pm #

    What happens to people after they die? Mormons BAPTIZE them, like they have baptized hundreds of thousands of dead Jews. As Dave Barry would say, I am not making this up.

    And Katy–you are so right! I am rooting for Newt, if only for the entertainment value. Mitt’s deer-in-the-headlights look is wearing a bit thin.

  3. SueN. January 26, 2012 at 6:50 pm #

    The DNC needs to do everything it can to support Newt. I may even vote Republican in the Texas primary (assuming we ever have one) just to do my bit. Because the sheer entertainment value of an Obama-Newt race will be priceless.

    Moon bases by 2020. You can’t write comedy like this!

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