Republican Debate Tonight
January 7, 2012 by staff
Republican Debate Tonight, Mitt Romney’s biggest fear heading into Tuesday’s New Hampshire primary is voter complacency, not Republican rivals Newt Gingrich or Rick Santorum in a contest seen as his for the taking.
“Don’t get too confident with those poll numbers. I watch polls come and go. Things change very quickly. It’s very fluid,” Romney told a crowd of 1,000 people at Pinkerton Academy on Saturday. “I need you guys to make sure your friends get out and vote, and you vote as well.”
Romney’s campaign has called this “Super Saturday” and embarked on an aggressive and organized push to make sure supporters actually vote. The concern is that New Hampshire’s notoriously fickle primary voters could change their minds at the last moment or fail to show up at all.
“The only thing I’m worried about is working against the complacency that Mitt’s up in the polls,” said Jason McBride, who runs Romney’s operation in this first-in-the-nation primary state. “That’s the concern.”
Romney has led the polls for so long and by so much in New Hampshire that victory is considered much more than conventional wisdom.
The former Massachusetts governor spent time this past week in South Carolina, which holds its primary Jan. 21. Much of Romney’s staff from Iowa, where he eked out a victory Tuesday over former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, is in place in South Carolina for the first contest in the South. There are plans for Romney’s New Hampshire staff to head to Florida on Wednesday after the primary; the Florida contest is Jan. 31.
But campaign advisers worry that if they let up in New Hampshire now, Romney supporters are “going to watch the news and they’re going to say, oh, `Mitt Romney’s whooping’ everybody, I don’t need to vote,”‘ McBride said.
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