Santorum likely to get Kansas boost today

There hasn’t been much polling for Kansas’ primary, but that’s probably because there isn’t much doubt about its eventual result.  Rick Santorum has been the only candidate to seriously campaign in the conservative state, and that puts him in position to win today’s proportional-allocation contest:

Rick Santorum is favored to win the Kansas caucuses this weekend, if only by default.

The former Pennsylvania senator’s main rivals have left him pretty much alone to woo the socially conservative voters most likely to turn out for the Sunflower State’s GOP caucus.

While Ron Paul is barnstorming the state on Friday, Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich both opted to skip last-minute visits to Kansas and instead focus their campaigns on Tuesday’s primaries in Alabama and Mississippi.

“Romney looked at it like Oklahoma — this is all red meat and it’ll be a waste of time,” said former Republican Rep. Todd Tiahrt, a Santorum backer and national GOP committeeman.

Thanks to the lack of polling, it’s difficult to see exactly how the vote will roll out today, but Politico’s analysts believe that Santorum will win the popular vote and at least two of the state’s four Congressional districts.  That should give Santorum a nice majority of the 40 delegates, and he may potentially win them all.  That would be a nice feather in his cap and yet another argument that he plays better than Gingrich nationally.  It’s also yet another reminder that since Gingrich pledged to fight in every state after his Florida loss, he’s become an almost exclusively Southern candidate.

On the other end of the spectrum, Romney won the non-binding caucuses of Guam and North Mariana Islands overnight, as Jazz noted earlier:

The clean sweep by Romney in the U.S. territory – one of five that award Republican National Convention delegates in the nomination battle – comes as one of Romney’s sons, Matt, is paying a visit to the island to stump on his dad’s behalf.

Romney’s camp was the only one that sent any surrogates to the distant Pacific island.

In a statement, Mitt Romney called the win “an important milestone in my quest to restore America to the principles and practices that made us great.”

Romney has the resources to have done more campaigning in Kansas, but it was probably smarter to focus on Alabama and Mississippi.  A win in either state would almost certainly be a death knell for Gingrich, and possibly Santorum as well.  Today, though, Rick Santorum should own the headlines for at least a little while, and that might give him a boost in both Southern states as the conservative around which voters can consolidate.

Update: Quin Hillyer reports on an unusual end to a Santorum speech in Alabama yesterday:

Just as candidate Rick Santorum was obviously building up to a compelling “grand finale” today in a speech at the Pavilion of the Battleship USS Alabama in Mobile this morning, there was a commotion in front of him and to his left. A middle-aged black woman had fainted dead-out, flat onto the concrete floor (it was a bit muggy; raining outside). A lot of candidates would have looked out, stopped talking, asked people to go see if she were okay, and then perhaps continued speaking once it was clear that responsible people were seeing to her well-being.

Not Santorum. He stopped his remarks dead in his tracks, just before reaching a planned crescendo:

“Oh — well everybody, thank you and God Bless,” he quickly mumbled, already leaving the podium. And then he leapt down the stairs and rushed to the lady’s aid, just about the fifth person to reach her side.

(The lady was soon back on her feet and emergency medical people were making sure she was okay. Thank goodness, it seemed as if she were indeed okay. Santorum never re-took the podium, instead just wading into the crowd to meet people and shake hands.)

About Albert N. Milliron 6987 Articles

Albert Milliron is the founder of Politisite. Milliron has been credentialed by most major news networks for Presidential debates and major Political Parties for political event coverage. Albert maintains relationships with the White House and State Department to provide direct reporting from the Administration’s Press team. Albert is the former Public Relations Chairman of the Columbia County Republican Party in Georgia. He is a former Delegate.

Milliron is a veteran of the US Army Medical Department and worked for Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of Psychiatry.

Be the first to comment