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Florida Flashpoint: GOP Mason Dixon Line

Updated on February 9, 2012

There’s a highway that runs across the Great State of Florida, essentially cutting it in half. Interstate 40 starts in the East around the Gulf coast town of Yankeetown and ends near the Atlantic Ocean’s Daytona Beach. It is widely accepted as the Mason-Dixon Line of Florida. The Republican demographic conventional wisdom asserts, north of this line consists of the Southern Conservatives and south of the line quarters the Northern Moderates.

Newt Gingrich has attacked his opponent Mitt Romney calling him a Massachusetts moderate. Newt has vowed to take this battle all the way to the convention later this year in Tampa. The Florida Primary has bared the evidence all were expecting. It has led to the speculation; the third Party candidate could very well be Newt Gingrich.

A key element in this year Florida Primary is the amount of cash spent by the Super PACs. The combined total of Romney bucks and his supportive PAC ‘Restore our Future’ ran about 12, 768 Television Ads for an estimated net media bonanza of $15.7 Million. The Newt camp and his PAC ‘Winning Our Future’ countered with about 210 TV Ads costing about $3.9 Million. Needless to say, the messages of the candidates were overwhelming negative attack Ads, because the proven resultant is, they win votes.

It is customary for the losing candidate to congratulate the winner of the Primary event. The Florida event broke that tradition with Newt failing to deliver that message to Mitt. In fact, the results seem to have reinforced the Gingrich position that he is strong in the south. His resolute statement of ‘46 States to go’ suggests he is in it for the long haul.

The candidates for the Republican nomination resume their fight next heading west to the Great State of Nevada for their Caucus and the prize of 28 proportional delegates. In other words, Not a 'winner take all' state It should be an interesting battle given the subtext of Newt financial backer and casino owner Shelly Adelson.

Here is a look at the upcoming February schedule of events:

February 4, 2012

Nevada (caucus)

February 4–11, 2012

Maine (caucus)

February 7, 2012

Colorado (caucus)
Minnesota (caucus)
Missouri (primary)

February 28, 2012

Arizona (primary)
Michigan (primary)

The next debate is not until February 22nd

February 22, 2012

8pm ET on CNN (Originally Dec 1, then Nov 30)
Location: Mesa Arts Center in Mesa, Arizona
Sponsor: CNN and the Republican Party of Arizona
Participants: TBD

The current Republican Delegate after this contest stands at Romney 70...Gingrich 23...Santorum 11...Paul 6

Going forward here is what the data compiled suggests:

Ginrich leads Romney by 11 pts with very conservative Republican voters in Florida 41-30 %. Also exit polls claim 41% of voters say Romney is not Conservative enough while 38% are still looking for someone else to enter the fray.

If the Gingrich strategy was not clear before, it is now. The Southern delegate math amounts to about 600 allocated delegates. This lends credibility to his self-identified Conservative Republican position while attacking Romney stance; the Northern Yankee Moderate. To note; North Carolina's 55 delegates and Alabama's 50 delegates are both 'Winner Take All' states. If the strategy holds this is not over by any means.


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