The following article presents one interpretation of the race for the Republican presidential nomination. For a counter-view written by Ben Shapiro, in favor of Newt Gingrich’s electability, click here.
If you can’t get elected, you can’t govern. That’s why electability is a top concern of Republican primary voters, compelling even some of those who would prefer a Gingrich presidency to support Mitt Romney. Each candidate has his flaws and advantages against President Obama, but there are three big reasons why Romney is generally seen as the more electable one. The polls show that Romney is a much stronger candidate, Gingrich has significantly more baggage and Gingrich’s difficulties in leadership could jeopardize his campaign.
The polls have Romney performing better against Obama than Gingrich in every important state. First, look at some of the most Republican-friendly states won by Obama in 2008. Romney wins Missouri but Gingrich loses by 4. In Virginia, Obama loses to Romney by 2 but beats Gingrich by 5. In Florida, Obama leads Romney only 0.2% on average (the latest poll has him up by 2) but defeats Gingrich by 5.5. In North Carolina, Obama leads Romney by 1 and Gingrich by 6. In Ohio, Romney is behind by 5.5, while Gingrich is way behind by 13.5 percentage points.
Now look at some of the more difficult swing states, at least one of which will probably have to be won by the Republican nominee. Romney wins New Hampshire by 6.5 points while Gingrich loses by 10. In Pennsylvania, Obama defeats Romney by 2.3 and Gingrich by 9.5. In Iowa, Romney loses by 2.6 and Gingrich by 10. In Michigan, Obama wins by 2.7 against Romney and 5 against Gingrich. In Nevada, Obama beats Romney by 6.5 and Gingrich by 12. In Colorado, Romney loses by 2 and Gingrich loses by 8.
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