AP reports Mitt Romney wins the primary in Massachusetts.
HuffPost's Jason Linkins give his take on the political power play the McCain-Huckabee alliance ran on Romney.
The Romney campaign is not happy with how they lost the West Virgina convention. Campaign manager Beth Myers issued this statement:
Unfortunately, this is what Senator McCain's inside Washington ways look like: he cut a backroom deal with the tax-and-spend candidate he thought could best stop Governor Romney's campaign of conservative change.
Governor Romney had enough respect for the Republican voters of West Virginia to make an appeal to them about the future of the party based on issues. This is why he led on today's first ballot. Sadly, Senator McCain cut a Washington backroom deal in a way that once again underscores his legacy of working against Republicans who are interested in championing conservative policies and rebuilding the party.
Romney must be disappointed with his loss to Huckabee in West Virginia's state GOP convention:
Mike Huckabee won the first contest declared on Super Tuesday, picking up all 18 national delegates awarded at West Virginia's state GOP convention.
Huckabee bested Mitt Romney, who entered the Mountain State event with the largest bloc of pledged convention-goers. Both men and Ron Paul made in-person appeals to the more than 1,100 convention delegates attending Tuesday's convention.
But the former Arkansas governor beat his Massachusetts counterpart after delegates for John McCain defected to his side.
The New York Observer has a good piece on why Romney has risen in California after looking like he was on the verge of losing the state handily to McCain a week ago:
1) Immigration. A Field Poll, the gold standard for California polling, released two weeks ago found that 40 percent of G.O.P. primary voters pegged illegal immigration as the top issue -- perhaps not a surprise given that California, a border state, once embraced Proposition 187, which barred state spending on illegal immigrants and their children. Romney has courted these voters relentlessly in this campaign, consistently attacking McCain for his support of comprehensive immigration reform -- or "amnesty," in the rhetoric Romney has adopted.
Even though Romney's own history on immigration (he registered no objections to McCain's plan just two years ago) invites skepticism, his strategy already worked in Florida, where he won most of the "no-amnesty" vote. But in Florida, more G.O.P. primary voters favored a less drastic approach to immigration--and those voters flocked to McCain. In California's more extreme illegal immigration political spectrum, Romney could be getting more mileage out the issue.
The fighting between Romney and Huckabee continues as Huckabee levels a pretty serious charge against Romney:
Mitt Romney on Monday told Republican rival Mike Huckabee to quit "whining" after Huckabee accused Romney of trying to suppress turnout on Super Tuesday.
Both candidates are vying for win some Super Tuesday states in an effort to deny John McCain a decisive victory that would nearly wrap up the delegate count he needs to win the Republican presidential nomination.
Huckabee's accusation followed Romney's remarks to FOX News last week, in which the former Massachusetts governor said: "A vote for Huckabee is a vote for McCain, and if they want John McCain as their nominee ... that's exactly what the vote would do."
Romney, aware that Huckabee's message of insurgent populism is peeling away crucial votes from him in some Super Tuesday states, is recasting himself as the anti-sider populist.
This morning, Romney surrogate Mary Matalin went on MSNBC's Morning Joe, with Joe Scarborough, and took what looked like a back-handed swipe at McCain's family:
I think there's something else about Romney that's attractive. ... He's also the future. They call it change, but it's a really good example of what campaigns are always about -- which is the future. He is the future.
He understands global economics. He understands how to run things. He's fresh. He's new. He's got what all Americans want in the White House -- which is an all-American family.
Visit Think Progress to watch the video, as well as pictures of Romney's and McCain's family.
California gets a last-minute pitch from Romney, who hopes to carry the state.
Mitt Romney, forever trying to paint himself as the more viable conservative candidate, took a bit of a cheap shot at John McCain by comparing him to former presidential candidate Bob Dole.
Taking a cue from former candidate John Edwards, Mitt stayed up all night campaigning for those final votes.
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