How Romney's Surviving the South

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
March 14 2012 11:07 AM

How Romney's Surviving the South

ATLANTA, Ga. -- Aaron Blake tries his hand at a SlatePitch, arguing that Mitt Romney has survived the "gauntlet" of conservative Southern primaries and gets to fight through next month on favorable turf. It's true, but you could go further. Romney muddled through the South while picking up 48 delegates -- five times as many as he won in the Southern states that voted while Romney was still in the 2008 race.

The numbers: In 2008, Romney won zero of 24 South Carolina delegates, three of 69 Georgia delegates, six of 40 Tennessee delegates, and zero of 45 Alabama delegates.

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In 2012, Romney won two of 25 South Carolina delegates (not great, true), 19 of 72 Georgia delegates, 16 of 55 Tennessee delegates and 11 of 47 Alabama delegates. He improved on his vote percentage in each state -- except Georgia.

Hey, the picture's even better than that: Romney lost Mississippi's popular vote narrowly, but may pick up a one-delegate plurality because of where he won it.

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. You can reach him at daveweigel@gmail.com, or tweet at him @daveweigel.