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April leap or May slog, Romney on pace to GOP nod
GOP campaign » At this point, only a total collapse will deny the former Salt Lake Olympics leader the nomination.


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The same for New York, where polls have shown Romney dominating, and for Delaware, where Restore Our Future is the only group advertising.

Restore Our Future is advertising in all five April 24 primary states, including Pennsylvania.

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Romney shows no signs of ceding Santorum’s home state. Polls show Santorum leading, but Romney has amassed support from key GOP leaders and fundraisers.

Santorum’s Senate tenure and grass-roots following give him an edge, Pennsylvania GOP strategist Leslie Gromis Baker said. But Romney is poised to outperform expectations.

"Santorum may win it, but it may not be as convincing," said Baker, an adviser to former Gov. Tom Ridge and former President George W. Bush.

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MAY: SOUTH RISES AGAIN

Santorum hopes to continue to drain delegates away from Romney in North Carolina and West Virginia on May 8.

Drawing support from evangelical conservatives, he has won four of eight Southern states while Romney has won only Florida and Virginia.

Indiana’s Midwestern flavor and urban pockets give Romney hope on May 8. But the race looks southward again, favoring Santorum, with May 22 primaries in Arkansas and Kentucky.


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Santorum’s Christian following gives him the edge in Texas, but Romney can compete. On Thursday, he added the support of former President George H.W. Bush to a long list of local and congressional GOP leaders.

Texas’ huge delegate cache will be split according to the vote, and add to Romney’s overall lead, even if he loses, Maryland’s Hug said.

"You’ve got big ones in May like Texas, where, even if he doesn’t win, he’ll get his share of votes," Hug said.



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