Reading through the commentary on the Republican primaries, there is this one comment from Toby Harnden from the UK’s Daily Mail that has been noted on a number of occasions. And the related point that is made is that Santorum wins only in states and districts which are “red” zones (ie solid Republican) which will vote for whomever the Republicans nominate. Romney, however, has won solidly in states where there is a large and often majority “blue” (ie Democrat) presence. This is what Harnden wrote (via in this instance Instapundit):
Poor old Mitt Romney.
He wins six out of 10 states on Super Tuesday and a clear majority of the delegates available. He overcomes a 12-point opinion poll deficit in Ohio to narrowly beat Rick Santorum, who wins only three states.
In terms of delegates – the only measure that really counts – Romney is on 386, Santorum on 158, Newt Gingrich on 94 and Ron Paul on 60. He’s still far short of the 1,144 delegates needed to secure the Republican nomination, but that’s because of the proportional system introduced by the Republican party this year.
On Super Tuesday, according to RCP’s Erin McPike, he added to his vote total making it 3.2 million votes to Santorum’s 1.9 million. Thus far, he’s won 14 states to Santorum’s six, Gingrich’s two and Ron Paul’s zero.
Yet this is portrayed as Romney’s ‘worst night yet’, a ‘bad night’, as ‘winning ugly’ and his candidacy is branded ‘lethargic’. Even the most favourable takes on the Super Tuesday results stress that he hasn’t sealed the deal with conservatives, that he’s outspent his rival fourfold but is still only just beating them and that the Obama campaign is delighted with life.
So what’s going on?
What’s going on is that the narrative, as in all instances, is in the hands of the American media whose aim is to demoralise the Republican side as much as possible. For myself, the more I think about it, the less I can imagine a single person voting for Obama who did not vote for him last time, but I can imagine a major haemorrhaging amongst many of those who did. Picking a nominee who has a proven ability to win amongst those blue state constituencies has a lot of appeal. If Romney can win in Massachusetts he can win just about anywhere, and with Israel becoming the issue it is, he could even win in New York of all things.
Media Bias Update: The following story was picked up on Drudge: “Romney Scores Big Win; Press Fails to Notice”.
Mitt Romney won a crushing victory Tuesday, winning twice as many states as Rick Santorum and more that two and half times as many delegates, but his triumph is being portrayed in headlines across the nation as sign of weakness and failure.
Read the rest. This really is the problem for all Republicans in the election in November.