Welcome to ‘The War Room.’ Here are some of the stories we are following today, March 14th, 2012:
Onward! After last night’s Southern sweep, Rick Santorum heads to Puerto Rico to campaign in advance of the Sunday primary there, while a dazed and confused Mitt Romney will stick around to hit up the New York monied elite for more funding. The big prize in the coming week will be the state of Illinois, where Romney is expected to take the lion’s share of the votes due to the state’s more moderate voters concentrated in and around the Chicago area. Nobody is guaranteeing any victories, though. We won’t be doing that again, will we Mitt.
Romney and his Super Pac friends are planning a multi-million dollar ad blitz for Illinois. According to an early tweet today from Wapo’s ‘The Fix,’ no other candidate has started to advertise in Illinois yet. A Chicago Tribune/WGN poll shows Romney with a slight lead in the state, 35-31.
Santorum has campaign disorganization delegate problems in Illinois just like he did in Ohio, failing to file a slate in some congressional districts that may cost him up to 10 delegates. ABC News has more here.
Rumors are starting again that Ron Paul may cut a deal with Romney. “Discussions” are taking place behind the scenes, according to an article in TIME but discussions are being held with the other campaigns, too. Let the courting begin. Newt may be looking for a deal as well.
AP Delegate Count: Romney 495, Santorum 252, Gingrich 131, Paul 48.
Reuters has a new poll out that shows Obama’s approval level at 50 percent. Pew also has a new poll out that shows Obama at 50 percent as well – and beating Romney like a drum in the general election, 54-42. Now that’s more like it. Jonathan Bernstein has a roundup of all the latest polls, and finds that the CBS/NY Times poll from Monday appears to be an outlier. It happens.
It looks like the recall election on Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin is set to take place June 5th. A judge signed off on the motion after all parties involved filed an agreement on the deal.
Democrats are jumping all over Mitt Romney’s comment about eliminating (funding) for Planned Parenthood, as well they should. Republicans are wildly out-of-touch with the American people on this issue; Bloomberg reports that “Seventy-seven percent of poll respondents say birth control shouldn’t be a topic of the political debate.” Planned Parenthood spends 97 percent of its money on health care services such as cancer screenings, STD testing, and contraception and family planning services. Watch the video here:
Greg Sargent points out today that Romney will have to continue to “hug extremism” to appeal to the far-right in the Republican Party, so expect more statements like this as long as Santorum remains in the race.
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