Contested GOP Convention Getting More Likely?


The four main candidates for the Republican nomination for president say they're committed to staying in the race right up to the party's convention this August in Tampa, Fla.

There's just one problem: If they do, it might turn out that no one gets the number of delegates needed to win the nomination outright.

Stumping in Birmingham, Ala., Mitt Romney continued his Southern charm offensive, celebrating an endorsement from the country band Alabama. "Wouldn't you love to hear them sing 'Sweet Home Alabama'? Wouldn't that be wonderful?" he asked a crowd at one campaign stop.

In the race to rack up delegates, Romney has a commanding lead: 396, to Rick Santorum's 146. Newt Gingrich trails with 97, and Ron Paul has 38.

But with four candidates splitting the vote, Romney may not get the 1,144 delegates he needs to clinch the nomination before the convention.

It's exactly the scenario his opponents are hoping for.

"Everybody knows these delegates who are up for grabs, very few are hard-committed," Rick Santorum contended.

Santorum said Friday he's preparing for the possibility of a "contested convention" in which he would try to persuade some of Romney's delegates to change their votes.

Gingrich said he intends to do the same. "We want to make case," Gingrich says, "to all the delegates who are not legally bound that, in fact, the other two candidates cannot beat (President) Obama. And if they come to that conclusion, I think the convention may end up being one of the most surprising in modern times."

Contested conventions don't have a history of ending well.

President Gerald Ford survived a contested convention in 1976, but was defeated in the general election by Jimmy Carter. And back in 1952, Adlai Stevenson eeked out a victory at the Democratic convention, only to fall to Dwight Eisenhower.

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  • by Nath Location: Colo Spgs on Mar 11, 2012 at 06:54 AM
    I wish we had another Barry Goldwater today to take up the challenge.
  • by vietsubvet Location: Cospgs on Mar 10, 2012 at 08:32 PM
    American politics is so money-driven, I don't think any of truly has a clue what's driving this convoluted process. It would be so nice to have a candidate most of us can agree on. 'All of us' is a virtual impossibility, but look what we were left with last election cycle when the smoke cleared....Obama vs. McCain. And how did the worst prez in US history (Carter) ever get elected. Where's The Gipper when we need him?
  • by Disgusted on Mar 10, 2012 at 03:10 PM
    What do you bet Sarah Palin shows up at the last minute and declares herself the nominee?
  • by Jeff on Mar 10, 2012 at 12:52 PM
    If Paul, Gingrich, and Santorum split up the vote against Romney, I will have to vote for Obama. I cannot vote for Keebler elves or a crazy candidate.
    • reply
      by E on Mar 10, 2012 at 01:04 PM in reply to Jeff
      You don't think obama is crazy?
      • reply
        by Disgusted on Mar 10, 2012 at 03:09 PM in reply to E
        I think you're crazy.
    • reply
      by Nath on Mar 10, 2012 at 02:02 PM in reply to Jeff
      Gads, Jeff! It would be better for the country if you didn't vote at all rather than vote for Obummer.
  • by Jack Location: CANON CITY on Mar 10, 2012 at 12:42 PM
    BOB. A maroon? Really? Wow .... I am scared that you can vote. Moron.
    • reply
      by Ted on Mar 10, 2012 at 03:05 PM in reply to Jack
      You're aware that he misspelled it intentionally, right? It's a Bugs Bunny reference.
    • reply
      by uh oh on Mar 10, 2012 at 03:10 PM in reply to Jack
      More of a burgandy, really.
  • by Bob on Mar 10, 2012 at 11:53 AM
    I'd like to hear Alabama sing Lynard Skynard's Sweet Home Alabama also. What a maroon!
    • reply
      by E on Mar 10, 2012 at 12:05 PM in reply to Bob
      Whats wrong with that. Alabama has sung the song before. Matter of fact, it's on my iPod. Who's the maroon?
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