Rick Santorum Strategy: We'll Win At The Convention

 @DanRivoli
on March 12 2012 5:11 PM
santorum
Rick Santorum said Monday if party delegates can choose their preferred candidate at the convention, "they are not going to nominate a moderate Massachusetts governor." Jim Young / Reuters

Rick Santorum may be unable to beat Mitt Romney in the Republican primaries, but that doesn't mean he will let the former Massachusetts governor go unchallenged to the convention in August as the presidential nominee.

With a splintered conservative vote, Santorum's strategy for the chance to go toe-to-toe with President Barack Obama involves winning enough delegates to deny Romney outright the 1,144 needed to clinch the nomination.

The reality of the situation is that it's going to be very difficult for anyone to get to the number of delegates that is necessary to win with the majority at the convention, the former Pennsylvania senator said Monday while campaigning in Mississippi, according to The Associated Press.

That echoes a campaign memo posted Monday by Buzzfeed that said the Romney math doesn't add up and he will have a very difficult time every getting to a majority of the delegates.

If the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., goes to multiple ballots, Santorum can make a play for the unbound delegates up for grabs. The Santorum memo says the delegates represent the Conservative Majority of the Republican Party, and that is a huge problem for a moderate candidate like Mitt Romney.

On NBC's Today Show Monday, Santorum said Romney, currently with 454 delegates, will be unable to land more than half of the remaining delegates to reach the magic 1,144 mark for the nomination because the rest of the primary calendar will be fought on territory unfriendly to him.

When we go to this convention, if that's where we end up, it's a conservative party, Santorum said. If the opportunity provides itself in an open convention, they are not going to nominate a moderate Massachusetts governor who has been outspending his opponent 10-1 and can't win the election outright.

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