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Paul Sees Convention Fight as Best Bet

As they consider their gains and losses from Super Tuesday, the leading Republican presidential candidates are all laying out scenarios under which they win the nomination. Rep. Ron Paul is even thinking one through under which he doesn't win the 1,144 delegates needed to claim the prize.

The Texan's team says the party may go to its summer convention with no candidate holding the necessary delegates, creating a floor fight in which the party turns to him. "A brokered convention is the most favorable situation for Ron winning the nomination," said Jesse Benton, chairman of the Paul campaign.

After 23 nominating contests, Mr. Paul hasn't won a single state. His strategy of focusing on caucuses, where his modest but devoted cadre of supporters might have outsize influence, has produced no victories in nine caucus states so far—including three on Super Tuesday.

Mr. Paul even traveled to Alaska in an attempt to win there on Tuesday, the only candidate to do so. He placed third.

Mr. Paul has gathered 47 delegates, far fewer than the three other major GOP candidates, according to an Associated Press tally. By contrast, Mitt Romney leads the field with 415.

Still, Mr. Paul is neither dropping out of the race nor giving up, Mr. Benton said. Short of claiming the nomination, the campaign said it wants to gather enough delegates at the convention for Mr. Paul's ideas on the Federal Reserve and other matters to be included in the party platform.

"The actual political reality is that he has no shot mathematically to get the number of delegates needed to win the nomination," said Matthew Schlapp, a former political director for President George W. Bush. "If he had won a couple of these early caucus states—and if Gov. Romney were to continue to not be able to put this nomination away—you might be able to construct an argument. But he hasn't been able to do that."

Even so, Mr. Paul has raised a total of about $31 million—more than any of his GOP rivals except Mr. Romney.

He also stacks up well against President Barack Obama by some measures. With his fiscal conservatism and aversion to military intervention, Mr. Paul has attracted a loyal following that some Republican strategists see as more of a movement than a traditional campaign.

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