Upcoming - Maine, 2nd Half of the 1st Quarter...
As you know, Maine released the results of about 84% of their caucus events and declared Mitt Romney the winner, by 194 votes. This is a short note to put this in perspective. First, there is another county yet to vote, and 16%+ of the precincts statewide are not accounted for in the straw poll. I expect we shall see a large turnout tomorrow in Washington County, and Ron Paul will probably "win" his first state, in the eyes of the media. Second, this is another glaring example of bias by the establishment party against those with new ideas. Iowa, Nevada, and I'm even seeing reports of biased algorithms in New Hampshire and South Carolina are all pointing to "rigging" or "fraud" or just flat out manipulation. Whatever you call it, the attempt has been made to control the narrative of who is winning, and it has been somewhat successful. And finally third, and most importantly -
The Straw Poll does not matter.
The media and political pundits, the elite and the establishment can spin this any way they want. The fact is that right now there are 59 delegates for Romney, 23 delegates for Gingrich, 3 delegates for Paul, 0 delegates for Santorum, and THAT IS ALL. Romney is also going to get challenged for those 50 from Florida as well, since there's an RNC rule that makes them proportional. See my other post (http://www.capitalistsooner.blogspot.com/2012/02/republics-d...) for a complete breakdown of the delegates.
Compare politics to football. The 1st quarter is the Precinct Meeting (which Maine is in the middle of right now). Delegates are usually chosen here to go to the next "quarter", and people sign up for committees such as Rules, Credentials, and Platform. Rules are the rules that govern the next convention, Credentials determine who can and who can't attend the next convention, and the Platform is a statement of what the party believes, that moves up the process until a final one is settled on at the National Convention.
The 2nd quarter is the County Convention. Again, you have delegates chosen to move on, and you have the three committees that people volunteer for at the next stop.
The 3rd quarter is the District Convention. Think of this as the delegates based on Congressional Districts. In my state (Oklahoma) there are 3 delegates chosen from each of the 5 Congressional Districts who go to the National, along with 3 alternates, for a total of 15 delegates and 15 alternates.
The 4th quarter is the State Convention. Again you have delegates, but this time you have delegates that represent the State at the National Convention (along with the District Delegates, who of course represent the Congressional Districts). Using my state again as an example, there are 25 delegates and 25 alternates from Oklahoma.
The Super Bowl is where all the delegates from all the State and District Conventions (43 from Oklahoma, 24 from Maine, etc.) gather and select the nominee for the Republican Party. This year, Tampa, Florida gets to hold the GOP Super Bowl from August 27th to August 30th. There are 2286 GOP delegates that will be chosen, sometimes in a caucus (like Maine, Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, and Nevada so far) and sometimes in a primary (New Hampshire, South Carolina, and Florida so far). You need 1144 to win the nomination - and there are only 85 that have been chosen and are bound to vote a certain way, for a certain candidate, as of this posting. The final total of delegates for a state will not be known until that state has played all 4 quarters.
Keep your powder dry, we're just getting started - and keep going to those Conventions!