Iowa Confirms Mitt Romney As The Weakest Frontrunner Ever

Jan 04 2012 Published by under Featured News

Over the course of one Iowa winter’s night Mitt Romney went from the destined GOP to nominee to being the frontrunner who conservatives won’t vote for.

After Rick Santorum’s near win in Iowa tonight, the old questions about Mitt Romney’s ability to gain the support of conservative voters are ready to roar back with a vengeance.

MSNBC did some exit polling at the caucuses and their results reveal the depth of Romney’s problems. Santorum finished ahead of Romney among voters that make less than $50,000 (20%-15%). Santorum led Romney among those who make $50,000-$99,999, (27%-22%). Santorum crushed Romney among those who considered themselves to be very conservative, 34%-14%. Santorum led with conservatives, 27%-22%. Tea party supporters went to the caucuses heavily supporting Santorum, 30%-14%.

Despite the spending of tens of millions of dollars on his behalf in the state, Mitt Romney is going to finish with the exact level of support that he did in 2008 (25%). If Republicans were expecting to nominate Romney and flip Iowa from Blue to Red, they can pretty much forget it. If tonight’s results are any indication, Iowa Republicans aren’t all that enthused and motivated by Mitt Romney.

One has to question why the Romney campaign changed their mind and decided to compete in Iowa. They would have been better served by their original plan of skipping Iowa and concentrating on other states. By competing and raising the stakes in Iowa to victory or bust, the Romney campaign created big expectations and failed to deliver.

The two story lines coming out of Iowa will be Rick Santorum’s surge, and Romney’s failure to win the support of conservatives. Mitt Romney would not have been hurt if he would have lost Iowa to Ron Paul, because most of Paul’s supporters were crossover Independents and Democrats. What Mitt Romney absolutely could not afford to have happen was to be defeated by a more conservative candidate.

Instead of establishing himself as the dominant frontrunner, Mitt Romney revived the old storyline that conservatives don’t want to support him. Rick Santorum exposed all of Romney’s weaknesses. Conservatives aren’t excited by him. Conservatives don’t trust him, and if Mitt Romney is the Republican nominee there is no guarantee that they are going to show up to vote for him in November.

Mitt Romney wants to be known as the Republican that can defeat Obama, but how can anyone believe that he can beat Obama when Romney beat Rick Santorum by 8 votes in Iowa?

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