Go to HHH home page.
Smart Politics
 


Land Baron: Santorum Winning Nearly 60 Percent of Counties in GOP Contests

Bookmark and Share

Buoyed by support in rural areas, Rick Santorum has won 215 more counties than Mitt Romney and 58 percent overall after the first 11 contests

ricksantorum02.jpgMitt Romney has won more contests than Rick Santorum, has received 740,000+ more votes, and has amassed approximately twice as many delegates in the early stages of the 2012 Republican primary season.

There is, however, one metric on Romney's electoral scorecard in which he is losing quite badly to his chief challenger - a metric which perhaps symbolizes his inability thus far to unite Republican voters behind his campaign.

A Smart Politics tabulation of voting through the first 11 Republican primaries and caucuses of the 2012 presidential cycle finds that Rick Santorum has won more than twice as many counties (360) as Mitt Romney (145) and nearly 60 percent of all counties to date.

Five candidates have carried counties in the contests thus far, with Newt Gingrich in third with 79 (all but two from South Carolina and Florida), Ron Paul with 31, and Rick Perry with two.

Santorum has won 58.3 percent of the 617 counties in these 11 states, with Romney claiming 23.5 percent, Gingrich 12.8 percent, and Paul 5.0 percent.

The Santorum/Romney county map conjures up the once popularized image of the 2000 presidential election, in which the United States looked like a sea of red with George W. Bush carrying more than three times as many counties and four times as many square miles nationwide as Al Gore, despite Gore winning the popular vote.

What this means today in the 2012 primary race is that Santorum is dominating Romney and the rest of the field in more sparsely-populated rural areas.

County lines (unlike congressional district lines, in some states) are, of course, fairly meaningless designations when it comes to counting votes on Election Day, but it does provide yet another glimpse into Romney's inability thus far to win over rural Republican voters (and more steadfast conservatives) in many states - including states he is winning.

Santorum's advantage over Romney by this metric is so large, that even if one eliminates all the counties the former Pennsylvania Senator won in Missouri (114) and Minnesota (82.5), he would still have carried nearly 20 more counties than Governor Romney.

No candidate has won counties across all 11 contests:

· Santorum has carried counties in six states: 64.5 in Iowa, 82.5 in Minnesota, 45 in Colorado, 114 in Missouri, one in Maine, and 53 in Michigan. Santorum won a majority of the counties in all these states, with the exception of Maine. (Note: Santorum was involved in ties in Iowa (with Paul), Minnesota (with Paul), and Colorado (with Romney twice)).

· Romney, meanwhile, has won counties in all but two states - Minnesota and Missouri - recording 16 in his column in Iowa, nine in New Hampshire, three in South Carolina, 33 in Florida, 13 in Nevada, 18 in Colorado, eight in Maine, 30 in Michigan, and 15 in Arizona.

· Gingrich has tallied 43 counties in his victory in South Carolina, 34 in Florida, and one each in Nevada and Colorado.

· Ron Paul was victorious in 16.5 counties in Iowa, one in New Hampshire, two in Nevada, 4.5 in Minnesota, and seven in Maine.

· Rick Perry carried two counties in southwestern Iowa back in early January.

Number of Counties Carried by Republican Presidential Candidates in Primaries and Caucuses (Through February 28th)

State
Santorum
Romney
Gingrich
Paul
Perry
Total
Iowa*
64.5
16
0
16.5
2
99
New Hampshire
0
9
0
1
0
10
South Carolina
0
3
43
0
---
46
Florida
0
33
34
0
---
67
Nevada
0
13
1
2
---
16
Minnesota**
82.5
0
0
4.5
---
87
Colorado***
45
18
1
0
---
64
Missouri
114
0
---
0
---
114
Maine
1
8
0
7
---
16
Michigan
53
30
0
0
---
83
Arizona
0
15
0
0
---
15
Total
360
145
79
31
2
617
Percent
58.3
23.5
12.8
5.0
0.3
 
* Santorum and Paul tied in Louisa County, Iowa. ** Santorum and Paul tied in Lincoln County, Minnesota. Santorum and Romney tied in Lake County and San Juan County, Colorado. Table compiled by Smart Politics.

Despite his six wins, Romney has won the most counties in just four contests - New Hampshire, Nevada, Maine, and Arizona - taking a back seat to Gingrich on this metric in Florida (34 to 33) and Santorum in Michigan (53 to 30).

While delegate counts remain fluid (and vary wildly in media reports) given the fact that half of the contests awarding delegates to date have been caucuses, one firm number in Romney's favor is the raw number of votes cast.

The former Massachusetts governor has racked up a substantially larger number of votes than Santorum and the rest of the GOP field.

Through the first 11 contests, Romney has received 1,811,463 votes compared to just 1,070,154 for Santorum.

Newt Gingrich has received 977,942 votes followed by Ron Paul with 493,145.

Votes Received by Leading Republican Presidential Candidates by State (Through February 28th)

State
Romney
Santorum
Gingrich
Paul
Iowa
29,805
29,839
16,163
26,036
New Hampshire
97,591
23,432
23,421
56,872
South Carolina
168,123
102,475
244,065
78,360
Florida
776,159
223,249
534,121
117,461
Nevada
16,486
3,277
6,956
6,175
Minnesota
8,240
21,988
5,263
13,282
Colorado
23,012
26,614
8,445
7,759
Missouri
63,852
138,988
0
30,645
Maine
2,259
1,051
391
2,024
Michigan
409,131
377,153
65,007
115,778
Arizona
216,805
122,088
74,110
38,753
Total
1,811,463
1,070,154
977,942
493,145
Table compiled by Smart Politics.

Follow Smart Politics on Twitter.

Previous post: Will Snowe Retirement Give Maine Democrats Rare Congressional Delegation Majority?
Next post: Rick Perry Edging Herman Cain for the Ex-Candidate Vote

Leave a comment


Remains of the Data

Is There a Presidential Drag On Gubernatorial Elections?

Only five of the 20 presidents to serve since 1900 have seen their party win a majority of gubernatorial elections during their administrations, and only one since JFK.

Political Crumbs

Strike Three for Miller-Meeks

Iowa Republicans had a banner day on November 4th, picking up both a U.S. Senate seat and one U.S. House seat, but Mariannette Miller-Meeks' defeat in her third attempt to oust Democrat Dave Loebsack in the 2nd CD means the GOP will not have a monopoly on the state's congressional delegation in the 114th Congress. The loss by Miller-Meeks (following up her defeats in 2008 and 2010) means major party nominees who lost their first two Iowa U.S. House races are now 0 for 10 the third time around in Iowa history. Miller-Meeks joins Democrat William Leffingwell (1858, 1868, 1870), Democrat Anthony Van Wagenen (1894, 1912 (special), 1912), Democrat James Murtagh (1906, 1914, 1916), Democrat Clair Williams (1944, 1946, 1952), Democrat Steven Carter (1948, 1950, 1956), Republican Don Mahon (1966, 1968, 1970), Republican Tom Riley (1968, 1974, 1976), Democrat Eric Tabor (1986, 1988, 1990), and Democrat Bill Gluba (1982, 1988, 2004) on the Hawkeye State's Three Strikes list.


Larry Pressler Wins the Silver

Larry Pressler may have fallen short in his long-shot, underfunded, and understaffed bid to return to the nation's upper legislative chamber, but he did end up notching the best showing for a non-major party South Dakota U.S. Senate candidate in more than 90 years. Pressler won 17.1 percent of the vote which is the best showing for an independent or third party U.S. Senate candidate in the state since 1920 when non-partisan candidate Tom Ayres won 24.1 percent in a race won by Republican Peter Norbeck. Overall, Pressler's 17.1 percent is good for the second best mark for a non-major party candidate across the 35 U.S. Senate contests in South Dakota history. Independent and third party candidates have appeared on the South Dakota U.S. Senate ballot just 25 times over the last century and only three have reached double digits: Pressler in 2014 and Ayres in 1920 and 1924 (12.1 percent). Pressler's defeat means he won't become the oldest candidate elected to the chamber in South Dakota history nor notch the record for the longest gap in service in the direct election era.


more POLITICAL CRUMBS

Humphrey School Sites
CSPG
Humphrey New Media Hub

Issues />

<div id=
Abortion
Afghanistan
Budget and taxes
Campaign finances
Crime and punishment
Economy and jobs
Education
Energy
Environment
Foreign affairs
Gender
Health
Housing
Ideology
Immigration
Iraq
Media
Military
Partisanship
Race and ethnicity
Reapportionment
Redistricting
Religion
Sexuality
Sports
Terrorism
Third parties
Transportation
Voting