Local

Romney & Santorum In A Fight To The Finish

View Comments
(credit: KTVT/KTXA) Jack Fink
Jack moved to Dallas after three years at WESH-TV, the NBC affil...
Read More

Get Breaking News First

Receive News, Politics, and Entertainment Headlines Each Morning.
Sign Up

From Our CBS Music Web Sites

1133928 Romney & Santorum In A Fight To The FinishPick The Best Halloween Candy

181572784 8 Romney & Santorum In A Fight To The FinishFunny Faced Cheerleaders

 alt=Musicians Then And Now

452359772 10 Romney & Santorum In A Fight To The FinishBikini Models Because We're Missing Summer

 alt=Celebrities And Their Dogs

cowb thumb Romney & Santorum In A Fight To The FinishCowboys Cheerleaders

139556615 Romney & Santorum In A Fight To The Finish

Republican presidential candidates Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney debate on February 22, 2012 in Mesa, Arizona. (credit: DON EMMERT/AFP/Getty Images)

DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - Numerous polls out Monday morning show Michigan’s Republican presidential primary is too close to call. Three polls give the edge to Mitt Romney by four points or less. One poll says Rick Santorum leads by two points.

Michigan has turned out to be one of the most important election tests during the primary. It wasn’t supposed to be, because Romney was always considered the favorite. He was born and raised in Michigan, and his father was governor there, and a former auto executive. But earlier this month, the dynamics of the race changed when Santorum unexpectedly won in Missouri, Minnesota and Colorado.

Suddenly, conservatives in Michigan started believing that they didn’t have to “settle” for Romney, who many have been uncomfortable with. At one point, Santorum surged far ahead of Romney. But that ended after Romney aired many negative ads against Santorum, and slowly regained some momentum — and the lead — in the polls.

Santorum has fired back. But as he told me last week, during his second fundraising trip to North Texas this month, Romney has outspent him by three-to-one in Michigan. Romney cannot afford to lose in his home state.

Many analysts say it will change the entire race, and really raise questions about his ability to not only win the Republican nomination, but the general election itself. While many believe, on paper, that Santorum offers the most conservative alternative to President Barack Obama, many others believe he is too far to the right of today’s general electorate.

It all goes back to the question: Do conservatives want a “pure” candidate and face the possibility of losing this fall, or have a more moderate candidate — such as Romney — to try to appeal to independents? Conservatives, though, have said they believe a conservative candidate can attract independents. But how conservative is too conservative?

Even former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, in Dallas last week, cautioned Republicans not to push themselves so far to the right that independents run the other way.

If Romney wins Michigan, that will calm some Republican’s nerves. He is expected to win Arizona handily. But the next big race is already shaping up to be in Ohio the following Tuesday — Super Tuesday.

Also Check Out:

View Comments