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Who will eventually be the Republican candidate who faces off against the Democrat candidate and against Michael Bloomberg? The race is close enough that the pundits are refusing to offer predictions. If you don’t make a prediction you don’t have to worry about looking silly when you are wrong. Well, we don’t mind looking silly, so below you will find our state by state predictions as we think they will fall (dominoe style).
Iowa [January 3 – 40 delegates]: Polls have Mike Huckabee and Mitt Romney neck and neck in what everyone is expecting to be a photo finish. However, there is a significant difference between the supporters of Huckabee and Romney. Huckabee supporters are true believers, whereas Romney supporters tend to be pragmatists who are simply voting for the candidate they think can win. This is Iowa, not New Jersey, and in Iowa hearts trump dollar signs. Huckabee walks away with a close but comfortable lead. Romney comes in second and declares himself a winner for having received the silver medal. Everyone expected John McCain’s momentum to carry him into third place, which it does, however the Fredheads which have not yet abandoned Thompson for other candidates and the Ron Paul fanatics are all very committed and they both come in only 1 point behind McCain. Giuliani and Hunter pull a few votes but not many. Fallout: Hunter drops from the race. He does not endorse another candidate, but is quoted by several sources as saying nice things about Mike Huckabee. Fred Thompson waits until after Wyoming (January 5) then drops from the race and endorses his old friend John McCain. Rudy drops two more points in the national tracking polls.
Wyoming [January 5 – 14 delegates] – A very close race between Huckabee, Giuliani, and Romney. Wyoming voters are impressed with Huckabee’s performance on Jay Leno’s show and his win in Iowa gets him lots of press. That makes the difference and Huckabee wins Wyoming. No one notices.
New Hampshire [January 8 – 12 delegates]: New Hampshire voters take pride in not allowing Iowa results to determine for whom they will cast their ballots. In the last 25 years the winners of Iowa have never gone on to win in New Hampshire. However, Iowa results may not be determinative but they do have an influence. The winner in Iowa typically gets a 10-15 point bump-up in New Hampshire. But not this year. Huckabee’s win in Iowa is tempered by McCain’s 3rd place showing. McCain exceeded expectations and in doing so is also considered a winner. Huckabee gets a 6 point bounce, McCain a 7 point bounce. McCain also gets air under his wings from Thompson’s endorsement and crushes all other candidates in a landslide victory.
Michigan [January 15 – 30 delegates]: Michigan is supposed to be an easy win for Romney. After all, it is one of his many “home states.” However, he has been damaged by losses in Iowa and New Hampshire and Michigan voters have started to question his integrity. Huckabee’s identification with voters as being someone like those they work with, rather than the boss who fired them is well received and Huckabee wins Michigan to everyone’s surprise. The media is shocked and “establishment” Republicans bombard the print media and air-waves with every negative Huckabee comment that can be said.
South Carolina [January 19 – 24 delegates]: Huckabee has had a big lead in South Carolina for some time. His wins in Iowa, Wyoming, and Michigan propel him to a landslide of the type that McCain had in New Hampshire.
Nevada [January 19 – 34 delegates]: Romney wins in Nevada. The Republican establishment does everything it can to focus attention on Nevada rather than South Carolina, but the margin of victory in South Carolina ultimately wins the attention of voters.
Florida [January 29 – 57 delegates]: Huckabee’s landslide victory in South Carolina propels him to victory in Florida which was supposed to be Rudy Giuliani’s firewall state. Giuliani has been campaigning in Florida almost exclusively for the last month and the Republican establishment is shocked and scared. Unless something drastic happens on Super Tuesday they are going to be stuck with this evangelical as their candidate. Horrors! Romney’s hopes are crushed at this point, but he refuses to get out of the race because he spent his entire time as Governor of Massachusetts preparing to run for President and he has spent so much of his own money. There are rumors that Ron Paul is considering getting out of the Republican Race now and moving to another party. However, nothing like that happens…yet.
Super Tuesday – February 5
Louisiana [47 delegates] – The folk in Louisianna remember the person who was one of their best friends in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. Huckabee wins BIG!
Alabama [48 delegates] – Mike Huckabee
Alaska [29 delegates] – Mike Huckabee
Arizona [53 delegates] – John McCain
Arkansas [48 delegates] – Mike Huckabee
California [173 delegates] – Rudy Giuliani
Colorado [46 delegates] – John McCain
Connecticut [30 delegates] – John McCain
Delaware [18 delegates] – Mike Huckabee
Georgia [72 delegates] – Mike Huckabee
Illinois [70 delegates] – Mike Huckabee
Maine [21 delegates] – Mitt Romney
Massachusetts [43 delegates] – John McCain. Yes, that’s right. Mitt Romney cannot carry the state of which he was a governor.
Minnesota [41 delegates] – Rudy Giuliani
Missouri [58 delegates] – Mike Huckabee
Montana [25 delegates] – Mike Huckabee
New Jersey [52 delegates] – Rudy Giuliani
New York [101 delegates] – Rudy Giuliani
North Dakota [26 delegates] – Mike Huckabee
Oklahoma [41 delegates] – Mike Huckabee
Tennessee [55 delegates] – Mike Huckabee
Utah [36 delegates] – Mitt Romney
The states use a weird algorithm for designating delegates so it is difficult to figure out exactly what the delegate total is, but by the end of Super Tuesday the candidates have approximately the following number of delegates:
Mike Huckabee – 702
Mitt Romney – 91
John McCain – 186
Rudy Giuliani – 367
With just a little more than 1,000 delegates in the remaining states Mitt Romney realizes he cannot win the nomination. Attempting to salvage his bid, he approaches Rudy Giuliani about the possibility of a VP slot if he throws his support by Giuliani and helps him win enough delegates to take the lead away from Mike Huckabee. Giuliani promises Romney nothing but welcomes his support.
McCain also gets out of the race at this point and give his explicit nod to Huckabee but without a formal endorsement.
Huckabee and Giuliani look to the final 23 states.
Kansas [February 9 – 39 delegates] – Mike Huckabee
Washington [February 9/19 – 40 delegates] – Rudy Giuliani
District of Columbia [February 12 – 19 delegates] – Rudy Giuliani
Maryland [February 12 – 37 delegates] – Rudy Giuliani
Virginia [February 12 – 63 delegates] – Mike Huckabee
Wisconsin [February 19 – 4o delegates] – Rudy Giuliani
Ohio [March 4 – 88 delegates] – Mike Huckabee
Rhode Island [March 4 – 20 delegates] – Rudy Giuliani
Texas [March 4 – 140 delegates] – Mike Huckabee
Vermont [March 4 – 17 delegates] – Rudy Giuliani
By March 4 it appears that there is no way that Rudy Giuliani can win enough delegates to win the nomination. However, he does not drop out and rumors run wild about a coup that will take place at the Republican convention. The Republican Party appears to be about to tear itself apart and there are calls for an agreement to be made for both Huckabee and Giuliani to be on the ticket. However, Huckabee supporters are concerned about a candidate with Giuliani’s social positions and there is a minor uprising. The process goes on.
Mississippi [March 11 – 39 delegates] – Mike Huckabee
Rudy meets with Mike Huckabee and promises to support him in whatever roll Mike Huckabee sees fit. Huckabee does not promise him a place on the ticket, but does indicate his respect for Giuliani and encourages him saying that America will need him in the coming days.
Most of the Republican Party begins to work at pulling itself together for the general election.
However, Mitt Romney announces that after an epiphany he has now become pro-choice. Ron Paul and Dennis Kucinich work together to form a new political party called United For Ourselves which becomes known as the UFO Party. And, Rush Limbaugh claims that he is responsible for Mike Huckabee’s win.
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