For the first time since the start of the primary season a decisive victory is in sight. If Mitt can win Ohio (or Tennessee and Ohio), then the fat lady will clear her wide throat, stride onto the stage, and begin her concert. At that point, the delegate math will be too daunting and Mitt’s momentum too great to stop him.
But what happens if he doesn’t win Ohio or Tennessee? After all, the polls are within the margin of error, and the Tennessee polls make Santorum a narrow favorite. Does that flip the momentum once again?
It’s doubtful. Even if he loses Ohio and Tennessee, he’ll likely win most of the Super Tuesday delegates. If he wins most of the Super Tuesday delegates, then either Rick Santorum or Newt Gingrich would have dominate the rest of the primary season to secure the nomination.
Even when Mitt has been down, he hasn’t fallen far. When he’s been up, he’s won key states, including Florida and Arizona in landslides. As his delegate count mounts, his opponents’ window closes . . . slowly but surely. Tonight could end the race, or it could “just” be another giant step towards the nomination. Either way, I’m happy. While nothing is certain in politics until the votes are counted, I’m feeling optimistic.
EFM readers, here’s my Super Tuesday prediction. Leave yours in the comments.
Mitt wins: Virginia, Vermont, Massachusetts, Idaho, North Dakota, Alaska, and Ohio (in a nailbiter).
Rick wins: Oklahoma.
Newt wins: Georgia
Too close to call: Tennessee (but if you force me to choose, I say Santorum by less than 2 points).
We shall see. The first polls close in less than three hours.