Super Tuesday will not live up to its name this year. In past presidential primaries, the first Tuesday in March was the decisive day when so many big states held their nominating contests that it almost served as a nationwide primary. But when 10 states hold their presidential preference polls a week from today, itís more likely to muddle the picture further than to be decisive.
Of the 2,286 delegates who will attend the Republican National Convention in Tampa, 419, or less than one in five, will be selected next week, and those are allocated by convoluted rules that bear only a limited relation to the respective statesí political influence or population (though they do tend to reward solidly Republican areas.) Thus, Oklahoma has more delegates than Massachusetts, even though the Bay State not only has nearly twice the population than Oklahoma but more Republican voters as well.
The states at stake next week:
Ohio has long been a battleground in general elections, and it will also be fiercely contested by Republicans next week. Newt Gingrich has been campaigning in the state for the better part of a month, even spending caucus night in Minnesota and Colorado on Feb. 7 in the Buckeye State. Although Romney has the support of much of the stateís Republican establishment, he suffered an embarrassing defection there last week when Mike DeWine, the GOP Attorney General and former U.S. senator, announced that he was shifting his support to Rick Santorum.