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Mitt Romney: Deep South Is 'A Bit Of An Away Game'

The Huffington Post   Posted: 03/08/2012 4:34 pm

With the Mississippi and Alabama Republican primaries approaching, Mitt Romney admitted the Deep South is "a bit of an away game" for him.

The GOP hopeful told WAPI in Birmingham he was "confident" about his chances in the South, noting he hoped to get a majority of Alabama's 50 delegates. Romney said getting the majority of the delegates "would be the icing on the cake."

"I'm confident we're going to get some delegates," Romney said, according to CBS. "That, of course, is what this is all about -- getting the delegates necessary to become the nominee."

The former Massachusetts governor lost one Deep South state on Super Tuesday, when rival Newt Gingrich -- who hails from the Peach State -- won Georgia. Though Romney could face challenges in the southern states, Gingrich would need multiple wins to get to the Republican convention in August.

The AP reports:

Mitt Romney faces a tough sell in the Deep South. With Mississippi and Alabama primaries coming up next Tuesday, there's concern that he's too slick, not really a conservative. In a region where the evangelical vote is important, some are skeptical about his Mormon faith.

But if Romney wins the Republican nomination and it's a November choice between him and Democratic President Barack Obama, the former Massachusetts governor may be just good enough for some Southerners.

"If push comes to shove and he gets the nomination, I'll go in the voting booth like this and vote for him," says Mississippi retiree David Wilke, holding his nose.

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who represented Georgia for 20 years and now lives in Virginia, needs to win every state from South Carolina to Texas to get to the convention this summer, spokesman R.C. Hammond says.

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