Wednesday, January 16, 2008

You read it here first.

In passing, I was rather peeved that Big Media did not notice that Ron Paul soundly defeated Giuliani in Michigan. Paul got more than twice as many votes as Giuliani, almost more than Thompson and Giuliani combined. And I don't buy the excuse that Giuliani didn't campaign there. Are we to believe that people in Michigan have never heard of Mr Nine Eleven?

And I'll elaborate below on why they are ignoring the delegate story by simply looking at the "winner".

Anyway, over six months ago I predicted that the primaries were very unlikely to play out like they did in the past with a simple cascade of wins and dropouts so the race would be decided by February 6. (The idea actually goes back even further but I was not blogging back then.)

Suddenly everyone is talking about the race continuing well past Super Tuesday with a chance that it might only be decided on the floor of the convention. In my not-so-humble opinion, the Democratic nomination might even be decided by an old fashioned credentials fight over whether to seat delegates from Michigan and Florida. One wonders just how uncommitted those Michigan delegates actually are. It could be very interesting. I hope there is an Arthur Schlesinger somewhere inside waiting to write a history of what takes place behind closed doors at those conventions.

My new observation is that everyone seems surprised by Romney's big lead in delegates. Well, duh, they wouldn't be if they read their own news reports about how delegates are split up. Romney was ahead of Huckabee by 24-18 (and 24-10 over McCain) before he won Michigan. Solid second place finishes can produce more delegates than a win and a bunch of weak third-place finishes, but the horse-race fans on cable news shows seem unaware of the delegate counts. You need to go somewhere like to see those data. These are not winner-take-all primaries.

On the Democratic side, Edwards trails with 18 delegates to 24 and 25 held by the two leaders ... and there are over 4000 delegates at the convention! They don't exactly have an insurmountable lead over him. He is only in trouble due to perception and money, not his place in the race. If he had money like Romney, he might be able to keep it a 3-way race until he got to a state where a win would put him in the spotlight.

OK, some of my June predictions were far from perfect. I also predicted that McCain might be screwed over when Bush starts pulling troops out of Iraq, just as he did after each previous surge. However, it is starting to look like McCain might be able to spin that to his advantage, but only if the insurgents don't suddenly attack next summer during the conventions. They have shown a pattern of lying low at times that correlate to US elections.

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