News

    Romney Takes Major Step Toward Republican Nomination

    Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, right, and his wife Ann wave to a crowd in Schaumburg, Illinois, after Romney won the Illinois Republican presidential primary, March 20, 2012.
    Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, right, and his wife Ann wave to a crowd in Schaumburg, Illinois, after Romney won the Illinois Republican presidential primary, March 20, 2012.

    Multimedia

    Audio

    Former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney took another step toward clinching the Republican Party's presidential nomination Tuesday with a convincing win in the Illinois primary.  Romney defeated his main rival, former Pennsylvania senator Rick Santorum, by a 12 point margin and padded his lead in the all-important delegate count in his quest to be the Republican nominee.

    Mitt Romney continues to win the key primary battles with Rick Santorum as he moves ever closer to becoming the presumptive Republican candidate against President Barack Obama in the November election.

    Romney got another boost in the wake of his victory in Illinois when he won the endorsement of former Florida governor Jeb Bush.  Bush issued a written statement that said it was time Republicans unite behind Romney as their nominee.

    In his speeches, Romney mentions Santorum less and less and focuses most of his attention on drawing a contrast with President Obama.

    "The genius of America is that we nurture those dreams and the dreamers," said Romney.  "We honor them and yes, we reward them.  That is part of what is uniquely brilliant about America.  But day by day, job-killing regulation by job-killing regulation, bureaucrat by bureaucrat, this president is crushing the dream and the dreamers and I will make sure that finally ends!"

    Romney's base of support among Republican voters includes those who say their top priority is defeating Obama in November.  He also does well among Republicans who describe themselves as moderates.

    Rick Santorum continues to draw support from religious voters and from Republicans who consider themselves very conservative.  He argues that he would offer general election voters a bolder alternative to the president than would Romney.

    "They want someone who is not going to go to Washington, D.C. because they want to be the most powerful person in the world to manage Washington," said Santorum.  "They want someone who is going to take that power and give it back to the people of this country!"

    It takes the support of 1,144 delegates to secure the Republican nomination at the party's nominating convention in Tampa, Florida, in late August.

    The latest Associated Press unofficial tally gives Romney more than 560 delegates, more than twice as many as Santorum.

    Santorum is favored in the next primary in Louisiana on Saturday, but expert Henry Olsen of the American Enterprise Institute says Romney remains the strong favorite to eventually win the nomination.

    "I think right now the way things are going, Mitt Romney just needs to be patient and he's going to be the nominee," noted Olsen.

    Some analysts note that Republican voter turnout in the primaries and caucuses this year is down from four years ago.  Some party leaders have also expressed concern that the lengthy and divisive primary campaign could hurt Republican chances in November.

    But John Fortier of the Bipartisan Policy Center expects that the Republican Party will unify behind its nominee in time for the general election campaign in November.

    "I think there is a great likelihood at the end of the race that most Republican voters will come home, just as after the [Hillary] Clinton and [Barack] Obama race where there was bitterness and different types of voters, most Democratic voters ended up supporting the nominee," Fortier explained.

    The delegate math demonstrates how difficult it would be for Santorum to overtake Romney at this point.  Santorum would have to win about 70 percent of the remaining delegates at stake to win the nomination, while Romney only needs to win about 45 percent to emerge victorious.


    Jim Malone

    Jim Malone has served as VOA’s National correspondent covering U.S. elections and politics since 1995. Prior to that he was a VOA congressional correspondent and served as VOA’s East Africa Correspondent from 1986 to 1990. Jim began his VOA career with the English to Africa Service in 1983.

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Valentine's Day Stinks for Lebanese Clownsi
    X
    February 09, 2016 8:04 PM
    This weekend, on Valentine's Day in Lebanon, love is not the only thing in the air. More than half a year after the country's trash crisis began, the stink of uncollected garbage remains on the streets. Step forward "Clown Me In," a group of clowns who use their skills for activism. Before the most romantic day of the year the clowns have released their unusual take on love in Lebanon -- in a bid to keep the pressure up and get the trash off the streets. John Owens reports from Beirut.
    Video

    Video Valentine's Day Stinks for Lebanese Clowns

    This weekend, on Valentine's Day in Lebanon, love is not the only thing in the air. More than half a year after the country's trash crisis began, the stink of uncollected garbage remains on the streets. Step forward "Clown Me In," a group of clowns who use their skills for activism. Before the most romantic day of the year the clowns have released their unusual take on love in Lebanon -- in a bid to keep the pressure up and get the trash off the streets. John Owens reports from Beirut.
    Video

    Video Rocky Year Ahead for Nigeria Amid Oil Price Crash

    The global fall in the price of oil has rattled the economies of many petroleum exporters, and Africa’s oil king Nigeria is no exception. As Chris Stein reports from Lagos, analysts are predicting a rough year ahead for the continent’s top producer of crude.
    Video

    Video Foreign Policy Weighs Heavy for Some US Voters

    VOA talks to protesters in Manchester, New Hampshire who sound off on foreign policy issues such as the Guantanamo Bay Prison, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Middle East Affairs and national security.
    Video

    Video 'No Means No' Program Targets Sexual Violence in Kenya

    The organizers of an initiative to reduce and stop rape in the informal settlements around Kenya's capital say their program is having marked success. Girls are taking self-defense classes while the boys are learning how to protect the girls and respect them. Lenny Ruvaga reports from Nairobi.
    Video

    Video New Hampshire Voters Are Independent, Mindful of History

    Once every four years, the northeastern state of New Hampshire becomes the center of the U.S. political universe with its first-in-the-nation presidential primary. What's unusual about New Hampshire is how seriously the voters take their role and the responsibility of being among the first to weigh in on the candidates.
    Video

    Video Chocolate Lovers Get a Sweet History Lesson

    Observed in many countries around the world, Valentine’s Day is sometimes celebrated with chocolate festivals. But at a festival near Washington, the visitors experience a bit more than a sugar rush. They go on a sweet journey through history. VOA’s June Soh takes us to the festival.
    Video

    Video 'Smart' Bandages Could Heal Wounds More Quickly

    Simple bandages are usually seen as the first line of attack in healing small to moderate wounds and burns. But scientists say new synthetic materials with embedded microsensors could turn bandages into a much more valuable tool for emergency physicians. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Bhutanese Refugees in New Hampshire Closely Watching Primary Election

    They fled their country and lived in refugee camps in neighboring Nepal for decades before being resettled in the northeastern U.S. state of New Hampshire -- now the focus of the U.S. presidential contest. VOA correspondent Aru Pande spoke with members of the Bhutanese community, including new American citizens, about the campaign and the strong anti-immigrant rhetoric of some of the candidates.
    Video

    Video Researchers Use 3-D Printer to Produce Transplantable Body Parts

    Human organ transplants have become fairly common around the world in the past few decades. Researchers at various universities are coordinating their efforts to find solutions -- including teams at the University of Pennsylvania and Rice University in Houston that are experimenting with a 3-D printer -- to make blood vessels and other structures for implant. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Houston, they are also using these artificial body parts to seek ways of defeating cancerous tumors.
    Video

    Video Helping the Blind 'See' Great Art

    There are 285 million blind and visually impaired people in the world who are unable to enjoy visual art at a museum. One New York photographer is trying to fix this situation by making tangible copies of the world’s masterpieces. VOA correspondent Victoria Kupchinetsky was there as visually impaired people got a feel for great art. Joy Wagner narrates her report.
    Video

    Video German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibit

    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video E-readers Help Ease Africa's Book Shortage

    Millions of people in Africa can't read, and there's a chronic shortage of books. A non-profit organization called Worldreader is trying to help change all that one e-reader at a time. VOA’s Deborah Block tells us about a girls' school in Nairobi, Kenya where Worldreader is making a difference.
    Video

    Video Genius Lets World Share Its Knowledge

    Inspired by crowdsourcing companies like Wikipedia, Genius allows anyone to edit anything on the web, using its web annotation tool
    Video

    Video In Philippines, Mixed Feelings About Greater US Military Presence

    In the Philippines, some who will be directly affected by a recent Supreme Court decision clearing the way for more United States troop visits are having mixed reactions.  The increased rotations come at a time when the Philippines is trying to build up its military in the face of growing maritime assertiveness from China.  From Bahile, Palawan on the coast of the South China Sea, Simone Orendain has this story.