Yeah, Mitt Romney won in Illinois. Via MSNBC.
Updated at 10:26 p.m. ET – Mitt Romney won the Illinois Republican primary with some ease on Tuesday evening, allowing him to grow his delegate advantage over his rivals in the fight for the party’s presidential nomination.
The primary had offered Republicans maybe their best chance yet of a genuine one-on-one battle between the former Massachusetts governor and Santorum, his chief competitor for the nod.
“Elections are about choices. And today, hundreds of thousands of people in Illinois have joined millions of people across the country to join our cause,” Romney told a throng of supporters in the Chicago suburb of Schaumburg.
Except…if you were watching Rachel Maddow tonight, maybe he didn’t.
In a nutshell, for the Illinois Primary, you not only had to vote for the candidate of your choice, you had to vote for the Delegates that would represent said candidate at the Tampa Convention. Therefore, odds are likely that winning the popular vote may not effect the Delegate count.
At this point, you have to be asking yourself, “How in the Cock-a-doody did the Republican Party wind up with this nominating system?”.
Two words: Michael Steele. (Via”Mother Jones”.)
In January 2011, Steele, the first African American chair of the Republican National Committee, was unceremoniously denied a second term by the party’s governing council, after a tumultuous two-year stint marked by the historic GOP takeover of the House but also multiple gaffes (Steelecalled Afghanistan “a war of Obama’s choosing”), blunders (spending $2000 in party funds at a West Hollywood bondage-themed nightclub), and charges of profound financial mismanagement. But during his rocky tenure at RNC HQ, Steele pushed for and won significant changes in the rules for the party’s presidential nomination process and shaped this year’s turbulent race.
These reforms are now bedeviling front-runner Mitt Romney and the Republican establishment by preventing Romney from wrapping up the nomination and keeping him mired in a nasty fight for the support of the party’s hardcore base voters, an ugly and grinding tussle that is defining Romney (and the party) in a manner that’s not bolstering his fall prospects (or the GOP’s). Moreover, the rules Steele bequeathed the party could yield an outcome in which Romney finishes with the most delegates, but not an outright majority, necessitating a brokered convention.
“I wanted a brokered convention,” Steele tells me. “That was one of my goals.” Why in the world would a party chairman desire apparent turmoil? To create excitement and shake up the party, Steele explains. So far this year, he has indeed succeeded in one regard: The Republican race remains unsettled. And that’s unsettling many within the party’s upper ranks.
(Go read the whole thing if you’re in the mood to be gob-smacked.)
Let me make a prediction.
In November, after Obama has trounced the GOP Candidate, (Also winning a more Progressive House and Senate in the bargain.) current RNC head Rance Prebius will be sitting at his desk. A half drunk scotch nestled in his hand. As he struggles to come to grips with the electoral carnage, a messenger will arrive and hand him a large envelope from the White House.
He opens it to find a single photo.
It is of Michael Steele with President Obama in the Oval Office.
They are sharing a fist bump.
Hand written in the corner is a note that reads “SUCKERS! Love Barry and Michael.”
And this song will play in his head.