Post Super Tuesday Delegate Roundup
Information is in the eye of the beholder. There are many interpretations of where the delegate battle stands, and certain people spin things one way or the other. Many will not agree with this assessment of the race for GOP delegates, but it is as close as I can get by reading both party rules (for each state) and election returns (or the lack of them). I will not make projections or guesses.
First, the bad news. My calculations indicate Mitt Romney has 322 delegates, Newt Gingrich has 99, Rick Santorum has 90, and Ron Paul has 22. These delegate totals are as of March 7th, 2012. Additionally, there are 258 "unchosen" delegates and 69 "unbound" delegates in states that have already voted. That is the good news - and where Ron Paul has a serious opportunity if his supporters push on. Here is the breakdown. Please note "unchosen" means the delegates will be chosen at a convention on a later date, and "unbound" means they have been chosen and can vote for anyone they want. If you see 3 "unbound", it is likely a State Party Chair, National Committee Man and National Committee Woman from that particular state. The list:
Iowa - 25 unchosen, 3 unbound, June 16th before settled
New Hampshire - done, 2 unbound
South Carolina - done
Florida - done, may be controversy over all 50 delegates winner take all
Nevada - done
Colorado - 36 unchosen, April 14th before settled
Minnesota - 37 unchosen, 3 unbound, May 5th before settled
Missouri - 49 unchosen, 3 unbound, June 2nd before settled
Maine - 24 unchosen, May 6th before settled
Arizona - done
Michigan - done
Washington - 40 unchosen, 3 unbound, June 2nd before settled
Alaska - done
Georgia - done
Idaho - done
Massachusetts - done
North Dakota - 28 unbound, April 1st before settled
Ohio - 10 unbound, others are morally but not legally bound based on primary vote
Oklahoma - done
Tennessee - 12 unchosen, 3 unbound, April 7th to settle
Virginia - done
Vermont - done
Wyoming - 20 unchosen, 2 unbound, April 14th to settle
As you can see, there are a huge number of delegates in play for the states who the media would have you believe are already done. Iowa, Colorado, Minnesota, Maine, Washington, North Dakota, and large parts of Ohio, Tennessee and Wyoming still have work to do. Even states I have listed as "done" may not be if a candidate drops out. Most of them have also not chosen who the delegates will be yet, just how they will be required to vote. If a candidate drops out, that would "unbind" their delegates for the National Convention. If no one gets a majority of delegates on the first ballot, most (almost all) of the delegates in the above listed states become "unbound" and will have to figure out who to pick. That is becoming an increasingly likely option.
It is virtually impossible for either Rick Santorum or Newt Gingrich to win outright at this time. Both would need more than 60% of all remaining delegates they are eligible for. This is because they are not on the ballot in all states, and in some states they are not qualified in all districts. Proportional delegate allocation - which all states who vote prior to April 1st are supposed to do - further impedes the three non-Paul campaigns. The Paul campaign is predicated on the rules, and is using them to their advantage. Finally, the Romney campaign is badly hurt by the loss of half the delegates of major early states and proportionality. Just Florida, Michigan and Arizona have lost roughly 110 delegates, and Michigan is also proportional - all Romney wins.
With allegations of fraud and corruption rampant (Iowa, Nevada, Washington, Maine, North Dakota and more) it is critical that those who run for delegate hold the party accountable for honest and fair elections. Keep organized, and keep moving forward. There path to victory requires not only success at the ballot box but more importantly delegate collection at the conventions. Keep up the fight, and remember: Liberty requires vigilance.