Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Mitt Romney Clobbers Opposition In Utah Republican Primary, A Bright Spot On An Otherwise Dark Night; Obama Thumps Hillary

Who would have thought that a Western Senator would do better in California and in Eastern and Midwest states, and an Eastern governor would do better in Western states? Yet that's what seems to be evolving in the Republican Presidential race. Today, on Super Tuesday, February 5th, 2008, John McCain padded his delegate lead over Mitt Romney, although he failed to get the necessary delegates to clinch the nomination. And Mike Huckabee succeeded in West Virginia and several "Bible Belt" states to get back in the race.

But if Mitt Romney was running for President of Utah, he would have won by a landslide. According to the latest Utah state totals, Romney literally crushed the opposition, winning nearly 90% of the vote. Romney's victory was so staggering he won in EVERY county in the state. Local media stories by KSL Channel 5, HERE and HERE, and KTVX Channel 4, and the Salt Lake Tribune, and the Deseret Morning News.

Only active candidates are listed here (99.7% of the vote counted):

Mitt Romney: 252,861 votes, 89.6%
John McCain: 15,198 votes, 5.4%
Ron Paul: 8,206 votes, 2.9%
Mike Huckabee: 4,038 votes, 1.4%
Alan Keyes: 250 votes, 0.1%

Mitt Romney picked up all 36 of Utah's delegates. The delegate count now, according to RealClearPolitics, is McCain 560, Romney 226, Huckabee 154, and Paul 14.

Otherwise, it was more of a "Stupor Tuesday" for Mitt Romney. He took home six states; Colorado, Montana, North Dakota, Minnesota (surprise), Massachusetts, and Alaska. But while some are sizable, none have the significance of a California, New York, or Illinois, three of the nine states bagged by McCain. Mike Huckabee bagged five states of his own. But Mitt Romney appears ready to press on with the campaign.

"I think there's some people who thought it was all going to be done tonight, but it's not all done tonight. We're going to keep on battling," Romney said. "We're going to go all the way to the convention. We're going to win this thing and we're going to go to the White House."

If McCain hoped his succession of wins would convince Romney to quit the race, his hopes were premature. Romney vowed otherwise, casting the race as a battle for the nation's future.

"This isn't just about the heart and soul of our party, it isn't just about which party's going to win in November. This is about the future course of our country," he said to about 500 supporters, many of whom wore stunned looks on their faces as the returns came in.

"I'm convinced that if Washington continues on its same course, America will emerge not as the great nation of the 21st Century by the end, but as a second-tier power. It will be passed by someone else; I can't tell you who it will be, but it will be passed by someone else." Romney added: "That will not happen. We'll keep American strong."

In the Utah Democratic primary, Barack Obama won handily over Hillary Clinton, defeating her in all but seven counties:

Barack Obama: 70,373 votes, 56.6%
Hillary Clinton: 48,719 votes, 39.2%

The Democratic delegate count now, according to RealClearPolitics, and including Alaska's Democratic results, is Clinton 764 and Obama 716.

Commentary: It may be time for Mitt Romney to consider some revolutionary strategy. It appears that John McCain and Mike Huckabee may be loosely coordinating their campaigns to deny Mitt Romney the nomination. Perhaps Romney ought to consider something previously deemed unthinkable - reach out to Ron Paul and his supporters. As much as I like Ron Paul, it's becoming apparent that his chances to actually win continue to recede despite the enthusiasm and dedication of his supporters. As a matter of fact, I could live with a Romney-Paul ticket.

Of course, there are significant differences that would need to be resolved. Romney would have to agree to serious simplification and reform of the Federal tax system. Romney would have to agree to ratchet down our military commitments in Asia and Europe, at the very least. Romney would also have to agree to take measures to reduce offshore outsourcing, or at least dampen the financial incentive towards it. And Romney would have to agree to ratchet up his commitment to civil liberties, including serious modification of the USA Patriot Act and put Real ID on hold indefintely. If Romney would agree to discuss such concessions, Ron Paul might be able to consider joining the Romney team without feeling like he's betraying his supporters.

And why would Ron Paul supporters even be willing to consider such a move? Because while most Ron Paul supporters merely disagree with Romney, they truly despise John McCain. They might be willing to hold their nose and jump into Romney's camp to stop McCain.

Stopping John McCain needs to become Job One for American patriots.

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